Can You Kayak With a Disability?

November 26, 2022

Kayaking is a fantastic way of getting out in nature whilst keeping fit and healthy. All different abilities can enjoy the thrill of being on the water, young and old, beginners and advanced. But did you know kayaking is a great hobby for those who use a wheelchair or are disabled?

You don’t have to be able bodied to enjoy all the benefits that kayaking has to offer. There are many ways in which disabled people can make the most of paddling in rivers, lakes, and the seas. It may sound like a challenge, but with the right equipment, guidance and skill, kayaking can become a fulfilling and rewarding past time.

With a range of kayaks for sale, Cambridge Kayaks stocks many different products suitable for all abilities. Our expert team is dedicated to helping people get out and about on the water, and in this blog post we’ll be sharing some of the ways disabled people can get the most from their kayak.

Where Can You Start?

The first step is to investigate and research any disabled friendly clubs in your local area. ‘Paddle-Ability’ clubs can be found up and down the country and these organisations provide specialist support and training for people of all abilities.

If you’ve never kayaked before, investing in some lessons would be a great way to increase your confidence and improve your skills.

Do I Need a Specially Adapted Kayak?

Not necessarily. Depending on your range of movement, it is possible to use a traditional kayak. However, specialist kayaks are available which make getting in and out of the water a lot easier. These can include higher backed seats or foam blocks for extra stability.

Do I Need Special Equipment?

As mentioned above you don’t necessarily need a specially adapted kayak or equipment however there are some things which could be helpful such as a higher backed bucket seat or adaptive paddling gear such as stabilisers or outriggers.

Depending on your ability, a ‘Paddle-Ability’ instructor will be able to advise you on what you may need.

What Are the Benefits of Kayaking?

Kayaking is a great sport to partake in and can provide numerous health benefits. From increasing strength and stamina, to improving mental health by being out in nature, it’s a great option for everyone.

It can even help improve your mobility by engaging with muscles that aren’t always used on a daily basis.

What If You Can’t Swim?

It’s very unlikely that you would be required to swim when kayaking if you follow the proper safety procedures.  This is because you will aim to stay in the boat and if you were to fall out your floatation aid or life jacket will keep you out of harm’s way, ensuring that you do not go under the water.

If you’re interested in finding out more about kayaking with a disability but you’re not sure where to start, why not get in touch with one of our team members today. We can help guide you on what type of kayak to buy, any equipment required and the best way of getting out on the water.

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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  1. Pingback: Accessible Travel: Planning A Vacation When You Have A Disability | My Beautiful Adventures

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