Types of Kayak Paddles

There are different types of Kayak Paddles for boat riders to choose from, which are broadly categorized into the various group based on shape, size, materials, and usage. Based on that above, we have whitewater kayak paddles, wooden, fiberglass, fishing, touring, and flat water touring kayak paddles, among others. Besides, choosing the right kayak paddles ensures that you will have memorable paddling and maneuvering of the boat. A poorly selected paddle will cost you money and time. Moreover, it will affect the Kayak’s health, and will also result in poor performance of the boat by reducing both efficiency and effectiveness of the canoe. If you want to have fun with your Kayak, it is recommended to select appropriate paddle based on weight, size, and the type of Kayaking you intend to do. For example, the whitewater kayak paddles are shorter than the flat water kayaking paddles.

Feathered and un-feathered paddles

There are feathered and un-feathered types of kayak paddles. A feathered paddle refers to the adjustment of the ferrule on the shaft, causing the blades to align at an angle with each other as opposed to straight alignment. The point at which the separate kayaks paddles join in the middle of the shaft is known as a ferrule. If you are looking for a paddle that can provide forward speed, then feathered paddles are the choice. Further, the paddles rely on ergonomics and body dynamics to achieve optimum forward speed. If you intend to kayak more often and worried of speed, it is recommended to buy the feathered paddles, while learners who want to know how to move the Kayak and does not care about the speed, the preferred paddle is unfeathered. Though unfeathered makes learning joyful, but have poor efficiency performance. Good example of these types of paddles are the intex kayak paddles.

Type of Kayak Paddles According to Usage.

According to the usage, there are recreation, sea, touring, and whitewater paddles. The paddles designed for recreational have a shaft made of metal and a plastic blade. Other features are the number of vanes, drip rings, and the type of the blade, cupped or uncapped. The recreational kayaks paddle have shorter length compared to other types. Besides, they are heavier and cheap compared to other paddles. The sea kayak paddles, on the other hand, are longer and manufactured from either fiberglass, Kevlar, carbon, or hardwoods. Racing paddles have cupped edges and extremely lightweight but very pricy. Last, Whitewater kayak paddles have a large blade which help draws a large volume of water, and with the blade tip reinforced to endure rock bashing effects. Besides, the models are known for their single shafts and short lengths. Materials for construction are the epoxy tips, plastic, aluminum, Kevlar, Carbon, among others and are designed for rapid kayak fan. When selecting paddles for whitewater, consider forte and sturdiness, and to achieve this, composite paddles are suitable for the situation. Other than that, aluminum and plastic would also offer durable quality products. The latter is best suitable for white water paddler beginners. The lighter paddles types are preferred for the flat water touring, which requires less energy to maneuver.

Kayak Paddles Types According to Shape

There are three types of paddle shapes, namely Asymmetrical, symmetrical, and Greenland style kayaks. Currently, manufacturer favors asymmetrical flat water kayak paddles, while paddles for the white water kayaks are symmetrical in style, and the Greenland shape kayaks which borrow similarities with the symmetrical kayaks.

Paddle Types According to Materials

Traditionally, paddles were made of wood and were popular among boat owners as they were easy to make customized the roaring equipment. They are cheap, available, and easy to construct and applies for most Kayaking situation, but requires regular maintenance. Of recent, innovation in technology has seen the rise of alternative materials for construction. These materials have both pros and cons and applied for different kayaking outing. Besides composite and plastic materials are the new kid in the game.


Today, most Kayak paddles are made of plastic materials. These materials offer good quality Kayaking paddles armor-plated with plastic composites. To strengthen the shaft and blade of the plastic, fiberglass, Kevlar, and graphite are mixed with plastic resin providing medium to high-quality paddles. Further, the item is favorite among paddlers due to the strength and lightweight offered by the materials. With advantages, comes the disadvantages, contrary to the wooden, the plastic kayak paddles lack the appeal and not friendly to the environment in decomposition. Also available are the plastic kayak paddles with fiberglass shaft and not forgetting the Carbon Fiber Kayak Paddle which are becoming more popular among watersport users. The best kayak paddles are strong, durable, easy to hold, and cost-effective. There are cheap paddles of high quality which will serve you well in any kayaking environment.

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