Everything You Need to Know About Pedal Kayaks

Kayaking has become one of the best outdoor activities that many are actively taking up. As a result, many are giving attention to the various types of kayaks and kayaking, and one in particular - pedal kayaks.

Pedal kayaks are one of the sought-after types of kayaks among kayak lovers because they don’t disturb the water and fish below. They are also the best alternative to paddle kayaks as the former has several advantages over other types of kayaks.

If you are looking to gain complete information about pedal kayaks, keep reading. As you scroll through, you will get a thorough knowledge of pedal kayaks.

What is a Pedal Kayak?

Pedal Kayak

A pedal kayak is simply defined as a foot-powered kayak. A traditional form of kayak uses a paddle to propel the kayak forwards. Pedal kayaks will use your muscle power to move the kayak. It is similar to a bicycle mechanism where the rider has to pedal in a rotation motion to move the bicycle.

Advantages Of Pedal Kayaking

Pedal kayaking carries plenty of benefits. A beginner or an expert will find himself comfortable with a pedal kayak.

  • With pedal kayak, you will be able to cover more distance. Using the leg power to kayak is easy compared to paddling
  • Seating positions in a pedaling kayak are more like a normal chair position which makes it easier for people to propel the kayak
  • Hand muscles are not disturbed in a pedal kayak
  • Pedal kayaks are heavy. This is the main reason for kayakers to choose a pedal kayak in rough tides
  • People of all ages can use a pedal kayak as the mechanism is simple and easy to catch
  • Pedal kayaks can be covered with overhead sheets to protect yourself from rain, tides, and storm
  • Pedal kayaks are faster than other types of kayaks
  • If you are choosing a kayak for recreational purposes, pedal kayaks are the best option
  • Pedal kayak is apt for fishing spots. Learn the best fishing spots and put your pedal kayak in the water to reap all of them. Storage space is also ample for you to store the catch.

Types Of Pedal Kayaks

Different types of pedal kayaks have been constructed using the two basic structural designs. These are the rotational pedals and push pedals.

1.Rotational pedals

As the name suggests, a rotary motion goes into play to push the kayak forwards and backward. It is similar to that of a mechanism in a bike. A propeller is present beneath the kayak that receives signals from the pedals to move the kayak. Rotational kayaks are one of the widely preferred types of kayaks as they are easily available and everyone can easily use it

2.Push pedal kayaks

Push pedal kayaks can be propelled forward by pushing your feet against the pedal. Feet and ankles are the prominent players in driving pedal kayaks. Flaps are present beneath the kayak to propel the kayak in directions.

Materials Used In The Making Of A Pedal Kayak

Kayaks are made from various materials. The selection of materials depends on the type of kayak. Manufacturers are cautious and wise when choosing the material for the kayak. When it comes to pedal kayaks, polyethylene is the preferred material because other ones such as wood are not suitable for this type.

Polyethylene is the widely used material in the manufacture of a kayak. It is attained by recycling plastic. It offers the needed grip, stability, and strength to the kayak. High-density polyethylene is rigid to give the needed strength for the kayak.

Are polyethylene kayaks expensive?

Pedal kayaks made of polyethylene are not expensive when compared to kayaks made of other materials. Kayaks are also made using aluminum which is pricey compared to kayaks made of polyethylene.

How Far Can You Travel In a Pedal Kayak?

An expert kayaker who is traveling solo using a mid-sized kayak will be able to cover around 15-20 miles a day. It entirely depends on your personal power and determination. Also, the type of kayak is the component that matters the most. In addition, the type of water also decides the distance covered in a day.

Tips To Maintain Your Pedal Kayak

Maintaining pedal kayaks is quite similar to that of other types of kayaks. Ensure to get a gist of these maintenance tips to keep your pedal kayak in a good condition.

1.Clean them regularly

Cleaning a pedal kayak at regular intervals is a must. If you leave it untouched for a long time, the sand and water remains will spoil the texture of your kayak. Also, there are chances of rust formation on the pedals. So, ensure to clean them at regular intervals. If you are planning to take your pedal kayak for long sailing, clean them in advance as long tours will need space to keep your belongings. Dirty spaces will make everything dirty.

2.Avoid dragging the kayak

A kayak must never be dragged on the ground before or after kayaking. It is always advisable to carry them overhead or keep them at a place above the ground. Dragging a kayak will leave them scratched. This will make your kayak damaged. The chances of cracks are high when put to dragging. Ensure to possess a thorough knowledge of transporting a kayak if you stay far from the water bodies.

3.Keep sharp objects away

Knifes, rocks, and objects with sharp edges are to be kept away from the pedal kayak. It may cause damage to the entire kayak. If you are kayaking with sharp objects, ensure to tie and cover the edges of those objects.

4.Keep it away from direct sunlight

It is recommended to keep your pedal kayak from direct sunlight. This will prevent the color from fading. The scorching heat may also damage the material if not covered properly when not in use.

5.Grease the pedal regularly

The pedal is the propelling force of the kayak. Greasing it or oiling it at regular intervals will keep the pedal well-ordered. The absence of oil and grease may give room to the formation of rust and corrosion.

Tips To Maintain The Pedal Unit

It is highly recommended to rinse and dry the pedal unit after every single usage. Extract the water in the pedal unit to prevent the formation of ice. Also, make sure to vacuum out sand and dust in the pedals.

There are chances of water plants hanging to the pedal belts. Remove them after each ride. Propelling pin is the most essential element for a pedal kayak. It is safe to carry an extra pair of pins when going into the waters. This will help you from any mishappenings.

Things To Consider When Buying A Pedal Kayak


If you are a person who is investing in a kayak to travel long distances, it is highly recommended to look for storage options. Pedal kayaks usually offer more space for storage as the construction itself allows you to store things. Ensure to shortlist the options before ending up with one.


The size of the pedal kayak should be a major consideration. If you own a garage to store a kayak, you can confidently buy a kayak that is 13 or 14 feet long. A smaller kayak will be 7 or 8 feet long thus making it easy to store.

3.Passenger count

Solo kayakers will be gifted with the chance to opt for lightweight kayaks. Tandem kayaks are becoming popular as more people are taking kayaking as a recreational activity. The best tandem kayaks will give you a great kayaking experience.


Advanced pedaling kayaks are equipped with rod holders and storage units. A few kayaks also offer space for the rider to rest. If you are looking for such variants, carefully examine the options.

Frequently Asked Questions

1.Are pedal kayaks safe for kids?

Pedal kayaks are entirely safe for kids. It is highly recommended that the kid is assisted by an adult at all times while seated on the kayak. Invest in a pedal kayak that has more space so that kids can sit comfortably.

2.What is the difference between paddles Vs pedals?

A paddle kayak is operated with a handheld tool. Be it a beginner or an expert, paddling requires a higher amount of hand power as a lot of pressure has to be exerted to operate the paddles only then will the kayak move. The pushing force of the kayak entirely depends on the individual hand power. A pedal kayak operates with a pedal mechanism similar to a bicycle. Muscle of the feet and ankle and leg power is the pushing force in a pedal kayak.

3.Does kayaking have a weight limit?

Yes, and kayak weight limits must be taken seriously. Choosing a kayak based on your body weight and physique is important. If you overload the kayak beyond its weight limit, it will sink.

4.Can I polish a pedal kayak?

Pedal kayaks are easy to polish. Polishing gives a fresh look. Mineral spirits or car wax can be used to polish a pedal kayak. If you are looking for an intense polish, an abrasive polish will help to serve the purpose. Ensure to use a protective glove before polishing.

5.Can a crack be filled in a pedal kayak?

A minor crack can be rectified using a marine epoxy sealant. Apply it 24 hours before entering the water.

6.How much does a pedal kayak cost?

The cost of a pedal kayak ranges around $1000 - $4000. Dimensions and features lead to variations in the prices of the pedal kayak.


People are taking up pedal kayaking for the mental and physical wellness associated with it. Many are interested in the activity and they are actively spending time learning the kayaking terminologies associated with it.

Moreover, they are affordable and come in various sizes and patterns. You can choose one based on your necessities. Manufacturers have added and eliminated elements on the pedal kayak to make it more comfortable and easy to ride. Plus, they are also a great option for fishing as they’ll help you stay in one place due to their great stability.

Now that you have a brief knowledge of pedal kayaks, you would have understood the reason behind the love towards them. If you have any questions regarding the pedal kayaks, feel free to add a comment.

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