Kayak Outfitting 2 – The seat

Feel like you’re sitting in a bath tub?

Lots of people have their kayak seat too low. Ideally, you want your hip bone to be level with the cockpit rim, to really get your weight over the edge of the boat – great for edging and so much easier for playboating! As an additional benefit, it will push you up in to your thigh braces more, for increased connectivity.

It’s worth looking at your seat height for river running, but definitely makes a big difference in playboating. Playboaters turning kayaks in to C1s may even go up a size to what they’d usually paddle. Not only do they get extra rotation, but they also gain more leverage from a higher sitting position.

I gave this a try:

It’s a 1.5 inch thick swimming pool float, thats been cut to fit the seat of my playboat. Ok, perhaps not the nicest looking piece of paddling kit ever, but it seems to work well. I did, however, upgrade to a product that I can highly recommend:

Jackson Kayak “Sweet Cheeks”

The sweet cheeks live up to the marketing hype – they really do make the boat much more comfortable to sit in. As well as that, the sweet cheeks conforms to your body shape for a totally custom fit. Luckily, it was easy to install as well:

1) Remove the old seat pad and add the adhesive backed velcro patches included in the pack:

2) Stick the sweet cheeks pad down, strap in to place, then mould to the right shape using the blow tube and the instructions provided:

I used the Sweet Cheeks 200 (the biggest size) to raise my seat up as well as  padding it out for more comfort and i’m dead impressed! However, I don’t have the money to get another one for my river boat, which is why the next blog will be on how to pad out your seat on the cheap…

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