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What Size Kayak do I need?

What Size Kayak Do I Need?

When looking for the perfect kayak size, you should consider these 4 elements.

The Length

The length of your kayak goes a long way to determine its efficiency and the level of satisfaction you would derive from using your boat. For instance, a shorter kayak is an excellent option for people who want to turn the boat easily and have better overall control. 

On the other hand, longer kayaks move better on a straight line (straight tracking). This attribute makes longer kayaks preferable for longer trips because it takes less energy to keep the boat moving fast on the same track.


The stability of wider kayaks is high, you can even stand conveniently in the boat while paddling or fishing. The downside of a wide kayak is that it leads to a decline in speed and tracking accuracy. However, you can use the skeg and rudder to mitigate these performance issues if it’s a major bottleneck.

The kayaker with a narrow boat can move faster and paddle more efficiently on both calm and rough conditions. 

Weight Capacity 

Most kayak fishermen move around with all sorts of gears. So, depending on the purpose of your kayak, you should make due diligence to research its maximum weight capacity. One method is to add 150 lbs to your body weight to determine the bare minimum weight capacity that your fishing kayak or sea kayak should have. 

People who plan to use the kayak for leisure alone can add 100 lbs to their body weight to determine the weight capacity of the kayak they should select.


The amount of legroom available on the deck of the kayak is crucial for every paddler irrespective of their height. Features like adjustable footpegs, which allows you to position your legs comfortably, would be useful.

Another factor you should consider is the center console. Consider the benefits and drawbacks of the kayak that has an integrated console in the middle of the deck. Such can undermine the legroom to provide more storage. Although easily accessible storage is cool, it would not be a desirable feature if it affects the free movement of your legs in the kayak.


Remember that your height and weight are not the only factors you should consider while selecting the perfect kayak size. Other important considerations include your kayaking preference, the traveling distance, and your storage requirements. These crucial factors will help you select the right kayak size that would serve your objectives.

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Robert Johnson

I'm Robert Johnson the guy behind I went to my first kayaking trips with my father as a little boy and immediately fell in love with it. It is still my favorite hobby today. I love to go on kayaking trips with friends and family and I wanted to share my passion and knowledge around this wonderful outdoor activity with this website.

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