Do you love adventuring on the water with your little ones?
If so, you know that choosing the right outfit for kayaking with kids can make all the difference.
Whether you’re exploring calm lakes or riding rapids, having durable, flexible, and comfortable clothing is essential.
But where do you even begin?
In this article, we’ll dive into a variety of fun and functional outfit ideas, so you and your mini adventurers can conquer the waves with style and comfort.
From wetsuits to dry suits and everything in between, get ready to level up your kayaking outfit game!
Type And Climate Considerations For Kayaking Clothing
When preparing for a kayaking adventure, one of the most important aspects to consider is the appropriate clothing. The type of kayaking and the climate of the location play crucial roles in determining the right outfit.
Different types of kayaking, such as whitewater kayaking, kayak surfing, or leisurely recreational kayaking, require different clothing choices. Additionally, the climate of the area, including the air and water temperatures, must be taken into account when selecting the gear.
For more adventurous activities like whitewater kayaking or kayaking in colder climates, a wetsuit or dry/semi-dry suit is highly recommended. These suits provide insulation and protection from the elements, ensuring that the kayaker stays warm and comfortable. A wetsuit is designed to keep the body warm by trapping a thin layer of water between the suit and the skin, which is then heated by the body. On the other hand, a dry/semi-dry suit prevents water from entering and keeps the body dry, making it suitable for colder conditions.
In wet and cold conditions, it is important to wear durable and flexible clothing that can withstand the elements. Waterproof jackets and pants made from materials like Gore-Tex are excellent choices as they provide protection from rain, wind, and splashing water. These garments are also designed to be breathable, allowing sweat to escape while keeping out moisture.
For recreational kayaking in milder weather, the focus should be on wearing comfortable and supple clothes that allow for freedom of movement. Loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and shorts made from quick-drying fabrics like polyester and nylon are ideal. These materials prevent discomfort caused by wet clothes and provide protection from the sun’s harmful rays.
Choosing The Right Wetsuit Or Dry/Semi-Dry Suit
When engaging in more adventurous activities like whitewater kayaking or kayak surfing, it is crucial to invest in the right wetsuit or dry/semi-dry suit. These suits provide both warmth and protection from the elements, allowing kayakers to fully enjoy their experiences.
For kayak surfing, a breathable and supple wetsuit is recommended. This type of wetsuit is designed to provide heat retention, protect the body from cold water, and offer UV protection. Additionally, it should have a good grip on the paddle and allow for freedom of movement. Pairing the wetsuit with a kayak life vest and a semi-dry suit featuring neoprene gaskets can provide additional warmth in colder conditions.
For activities like whitewater kayaking, a dry suit is the preferred option. A dry suit is fully waterproof, ensuring that the kayaker remains dry even when submerged in water. It is also water-resistant and breathable, allowing moisture to escape while preventing water from entering. The Level Six Emperor dry suit, for example, is a popular choice among whitewater kayakers due to its durability and excellent insulation properties.
Durable And Flexible Clothing For Wet And Cold Conditions
When kayaking in wet and cold conditions, it is crucial to wear clothing that is both durable and flexible. These qualities ensure that the clothing can withstand the rugged environment and allow for easy movement.
Layering is key in these conditions. Start with a base layer made from synthetic materials that wick away moisture from the body. This helps to regulate body temperature and prevent discomfort caused by sweat. Over this, wear a mid-layer of insulating material such as fleece to provide additional warmth.
A waterproof and windproof outer layer, such as a paddling jacket with a fleece lining or a drytop, is essential to keep dry and protect against the elements. These jackets should have gaskets at key areas like wrists and neck to prevent water from seeping in. Additionally, splash pants or long underwear can be worn as a base layer for the bottom half to provide additional warmth and protection.
Accessories like a beanie or balaclava hat are also recommended to keep the head warm. Neoprene gloves and pogies provide hand protection and improve grip on the paddle. Neoprene boots or water-resistant socks paired with waterproof or thermal socks will keep feet warm and dry throughout the kayaking adventure.
Comfortable And Supple Clothing For Recreational Kayaking
For recreational kayaking in milder climates and calm waters, it is important to wear comfortable and supple clothing that allows for freedom of movement. Avoid clothing that restricts or hinders movement, as this can affect the kayaker’s overall enjoyment and performance.
Loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and quick-dry shorts or yoga pants are the preferred choices for summer kayaking. These garments are made from lightweight, breathable materials like polyester and nylon that wick away moisture and dry quickly. This prevents discomfort caused by wet clothes and also provides protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
Water shoes or sandals with heel straps are recommended footwear options as they provide protection and stability. A wide-brimmed hat helps shield the face and neck from the sun, while sunglasses with polarized lenses minimize glare on the water. It is important to use water-resistant sunscreen with a high SPF rating to protect exposed skin from sunburn.
Clothing Tips For Kayaking With Kids
When kayaking with kids, it is essential to ensure their safety and comfort by choosing appropriate clothing. Consider their age, size, and swimming ability when selecting their outfit.
For bottoms, opt for quick-drying and comfortable options such as swim trunks or waterproof pants. These will keep them dry and allow for easy movement. Pair these with 100% waterproof jackets that have gaskets at key areas to provide layered protection against water splashes.
It is important for kids to wear kayak shoes to protect their feet and provide stability. Hats with a wide brim offer sun protection for their sensitive skin, and sunglasses with polarized lenses minimize glare. Kayak gloves are recommended for hand protection and a better grip on the paddle.
Kayak life vests are mandatory for kids’ safety and buoyancy. It is important to ensure that the life vests fit properly and are comfortable for prolonged wear. Consider using a semi-dry suit with neoprene gaskets for additional warmth and protection in colder temperatures.
Additionally, it is advisable to pack spare clothes in a watertight bag in case of accidental splashes or if the kids get wet and cold during the activity. Dressing them appropriately for the water temperature rather than the weather is essential to prevent cold shock and hypothermia.
Choosing the right clothing for kayaking is essential for both safety and comfort during the activity. Factors such as the type of kayaking, climate, air and water temperatures, and the presence of kids must all be taken into consideration when selecting the outfit.
- Whether opting for wetsuits, dry suits, layering, or specific gear for kids, the focus should always be on wearing breathable, quick-drying, and flexible clothing that allows for freedom of movement and protection from the elements.
Frequently Asked Questions
What clothing should you wear for kayaking?
When preparing for a kayaking adventure, it’s crucial to prioritize safety and comfort by dressing appropriately. Instead of focusing on the air temperature, it is important to consider the water temperature and dress accordingly. Wearing a wetsuit or dry suit can help regulate body temperature and provide insulation in colder waters. Additionally, opting for layered clothing on top allows flexibility in adjusting to changing conditions. Lastly, don’t forget about sun protection, as spending a day on the water means being exposed to the sun’s rays. Remember to wear sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to shield yourself from the elements.
What are the tips for kayaking with kids?
When kayaking with kids, it is important to ensure their safety and enjoyment. First and foremost, children should be familiar with safety rules such as abstaining from jumping in or out of the kayak and knowing how to hold a paddle correctly. Teaching them to use paddles only for paddling and not to lean or stand in the kayak will help minimize accidents and maintain stability. Lastly, it is crucial for children to keep their life vests on throughout the entire kayaking trip to ensure their safety until the adventure reaches its end. By following these guidelines, kayaking with kids can be a fun and safe experience for everyone involved.
What should a beginner wear when kayaking?
For a beginner, wearing appropriate attire while kayaking is crucial. It is recommended to wear a waterproof jacket to ensure that the underlayers stay dry. Look for a highly waterproof jacket that can protect you from water splashes and keep you comfortable throughout your kayaking adventure. Additionally, depending on the weather, opt for polyester leggings and waterproof shorts. If it’s cold, the leggings will provide insulation, while in warmer weather, they can be kept as a backup option. Being prepared with the right clothing will not only enhance your comfort but also ensure an enjoyable kayaking experience.
What shoes do you wear kayaking?
When it comes to kayaking, ensuring the right footwear is essential for comfort and optimal performance. Ideal options include water booties or water shoes, which provide a secure fit, protect against rocks, and maintain warmth during your kayak adventure. Additionally, if the weather permits, water sandals with sturdy straps like Tevas, Chacos, or Crocs can be a viable alternative. However, it’s important to note that these may not offer as much insulation on cooler days, potentially resulting in chilly feet while navigating the water.