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10 Tips for a Smooth Kayak Launch

Kayak Launch Tips

A relaxing day paddling on the river or lake sounds great, but how do you get from here to there?

If you’re struggling to get from dry land to the water, read on for ten tips for a launching your kayak.

1)) Find A Good Spot To Put In

This is arguably the most important part of launching your kayak.

Some parks offer man-made kayak launches, while others may have a sloped bank going down to the river that you can slide your kayak down.

A dock can also be used to help launch your kayak. And if all else fails, simply push your kayak into the water and get in.

2)) Latch Your Footrests

Most recreational kayaks come equipped with footrests that help give you leverage when paddling.

Prior to launching your kayak, sit inside and adjust each footrest so that your feet are comfortably pressed against them.

This is much more difficult to do once already in the water.

3)) Stow Your Paddle

Particularly important if you’re launching your kayak by yourself, make sure to stow your paddle inside the kayak before launching.

This will allow you to easily grab it when you’re in the water.

Leaving the paddle on land while you’re in the kayak could lead to tipping over trying to grab the paddle.

>> See a great selection of Kayaks on Amazon

4)) Secure Your Gear

Place your phone, car keys, food, sunscreen, and any other gear you need inside a waterproof bag and secure it to the kayak.

Many kayaks have a dry storage compartment. If yours doesn’t, attach it to the outside of the boat by using rope– most kayaks do have hooks that you can tie the rope around.

5)) Wear A Life Jacket

Before getting into your kayak, be sure to put your life jacket on. Even the calmest of waters can turn stormy fast, and it’s better to be prepared.

A life jacket is a must, no matter what your skill level is.

6)) Launching With A Partner

Launching with a partner is a best-case scenario.

Starting from land, simply step into the kayak, sit down, and have your partner pull or push you into the water.

7)) Launching From Land

If you’re launching from the land, look for a sloped bank. Position the kayak so that the nose is in the water but the compartment is still on land.

With your paddle stowed, step into the kayak and sit down. Next, scoot yourself forward slowly.

You may need to get your paddle out to help push yourself down the bank and into the water.

8)) Launching From A Dock Or Kayak Launch

Launching from a dock or kayak launch is much easier than launching from land. Place your kayak in the water, alongside the dock or kayak launch.

Next, place your hands on either side of the kayak and gently step into the boat.

You can hold on to the dock to steady yourself as needed.

9)) Launching From Shallow Water

Pull your kayak into the water, until the water is about midway up your calf.

Place one hand on each side of the kayak’s compartment, and step in one foot at a time.

Slowly and steadily sit down, careful not to tip too far in either direction.

10)) Get Out Your Paddle And Go

Once you’re in the kayak and in the water, break out your paddle and go!

>> See a great selection of Kayaks on Amazon


These 10 tips for a smooth kayak launch will help you to have a relaxing day paddling on the river or lake!

When it comes to kayaking, you have the option of selecting calm or rough white water runs. There’s nothing more freeing than being out on the open water away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. If you’re interested in learning more about the sport of kayaking, then stop by Kayaking Insiders often!

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