How to recover from a capsized kayak

One of the fantastic things about sit on top kayaks is the fact that if you capsize they are safer than closed deck kayaks. There is very minimal chance of being trapped inside. Also, due to their stability it is really easy to get back on again.

How to reduce the risk of danger during a capsize before you set off:

  1. Wear a lifejacket or other suitable PFD (personal flotation device).
  2. Wear clothing which is as non-restrictive as possible and not too heavy if it is wet.
  3. Know how to remove leg straps quickly if you are using them.
  4. If you have kit/equipment with you, make sure it is securely fastened to the kayak with rope or it is inside on of the watertight hatches. A paddle leash is also advised. This reduces the risk of your personal items floating away!

Demonstration Video – Recovering from a capsize.

Credit: Engage Watersports.

Kayak: Fatyak Kaafu.

Recovering from a capsized kayak:

  1. Do not panic. Look for your kayak and if it is close to you, hold on to it. Do not attempt to swim after your kayak if it is floating away from you fast – get to shore instead.
  2. Get your breath back whilst you use your kayak as a float.
  3. When you are ready, flip the kayak upright again. At Fatyak we have self-bailing scuppers so there is no need to worry about ridding the kayak of water.
  4. Our kayaks are really stable, and they are easy to climb back on to. Climb back on and find your paddle. See the video for a good example of how to do this.

We hope this has helped you minimise the potential risks during a capsize and has made recovering from a capsized kayak a little easier for you!

Happy and safe kayaking,

The Fatyak Team

Related articles: Why Choose a Sit on Top Kayak?Top 10 places in the UK to Kayak, Choosing the right kayak for you