Choosing a kayak of the right size for your height can be difficult. Taller or heavier people might want to choose a larger kayak, which would fall under the category of a recreational sea kayak.
Since knowledge on kayak length can be overwhelming, we’ve created a chart highlighting one of the most crucial aspects of purchasing a cost-effective watercraft and some guidelines for sizing. Kayak size should correlate with your life jacket or how far you can stretch when standing
What is the best size kayak for my size and weight?
Kayak Size For 6ft Person
Manufacturers classify the volume of kayaks in terms of how much room is available. Low, medium and high-volume types each have their own benefits.
If you are looking for a recreational kayak, you will find that there are three different types of kayaks that range in size.
Larger paddlers have a problem with their longer legs. Here, a high-volume kayak has sufficient space to accommodate the taller person. Conversely, small paddlers are more mobile in low-volume boats because there is less distance separating the deck from their hips and thigh braces.
The one piece of advice I would offer to anyone looking for kayak gear is this: get a kayak that’s the right size for your height and weight. This will give you more leg room and make it easier to paddle comfortably as well as maneuver.
Because one manufacturer’s medium volume kayak may feel like another manufacturers’ large volume kayak, it is necessary to check the dimensions closely before purchasing.
What Size Kayak Is Best For My Height?
Long Kayak VS. Short Kayak
Different kayaks are designed for different types of water activities; for surfing and paddling, it is best to select a shorter type. For better speed with more control, consider choosing from slightly longer kayaks that provide excellent versatility.
Wide Kayak vs. Narrow kayak
A wider kayak provides a more stable body of water for paddling and fishing in waist-high or higher waters compared to a narrow kayak.
But wider kayaks don’t always mean they’re extended in length, as the width can make paddling more difficult.
In contrast, narrower kayaks excel in speed and can maneuver particularly well. This chart provides a general length for different categories of kayaks:
Kayak Weight Capacity
It’s crucial to check the weight capability of a kayak before taking it out on the water. Attempting to paddle an overfilled kayak will result in tiring quickly.
Kayak experts suggest that the safest weight capacity to accommodate for in a fishing kayak is about 150 pounds (add your bodyweight and add 150). This will provide you with plenty of flexibility when it comes to heavy fishing equipment.
If you plan on using your kayak for recreational purposes, then add 100 lbs to your body weight to find the maximum amount of weight your kayak can carry.
Legroom In Kayaks
It seems that both standard recreational or sea kayaks can accommodate paddlers with most sizes of feet. Depending on your shoe size, many feet are able to adjust their position at the footrests in those models. Still, it’s important to make sure you’re comfortable when looking over your options. In general, taller paddlers may complain that the don’t have enough legroom in their kayak to be comfortable.
What Size Kayak Do I Need?
Finding the right size kayak for your needs can be tricky if you’re not sure what kind of paddling and activity you want to do.
6-8 foot kayak
- White water kayaks belong to this category and are easy to maneuver.
- Children or teenagers will find lightweight kayaks to be perfect for their age and size.
- Smaller kayaks have slower speeds than other sizes.
- They may not be large enough for adults or tall individuals to be comfortable
8-9 foot kayak
- Easy for operators and it turns quickly, so that’s why it does better on a narrower river.
- A recreational kayak is a good option for those with no outside experience or children.
- A kayak is very easy to transport, either by pickup or an SUV. If you are using an inflatable kayak, they are even easier to transport.
- If you are significantly taller or heavier than average, this option would not be ideal.
10-11 foot kayak
- I have a strong preference for those kayaks that offer effortless paddling. Furthermore, I often find them more stable than fast-moving designs.
- Normally 10-11 foot kayaks come with rod holders. Additionally, this type of boat is decorated with more storage which makes them a great choice for fishing and touring alike. We talk about this in our sit on vs sit in kayak article.
- Sometimes, short-paddle boats can be found.
12-13 foot kayak
- They are proficient in water conditions. In addition, longer kayaks are faster than shorter ones.
- The exterior of this kayak is decorated with enough space. Thus, it also provides a rare feature for fishing or equipment.
- Finally, I could say paddling with this is like a free ride. You can use it anywhere from the river to the ocean in any water condition.
- Some hand pumps need a greater amount of strength to use.
- These sizes are difficult to control for individuals without as much experience. We talk about this in our canoe vs kayak article.
Best Kayak Size For A 6ft Person
Choosing the right size kayak for a six-foot person really depends on the importance of these features: storage, stability, speed, and legroom. Understanding which one will work better for you should narrow down your decision.