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Thursday, 23 June 2011 02:00

Kayaking With Kids

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Kayaking With Kids Photograph by Steve Gibson

As a parent there is nothing better than getting your children out on the water and enjoying the outdoors. It’s a great bonding and learning experience for both kids and parents. I introduced my son to kayaking at the age of 2. This is not an easy age to start but I feel the earlier the better. If you’re looking to get your child into kayaking there are a few good things to know first.

Kayak Fishing With Kids

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You’ll want to make sure you have the proper safety equipment for the child. Make sure you’re aware of the child’s weight for a proper & comfortable fitting PFD. Comfort is very important to keeping them happy on the water. Proper sun protection is another must have for anyone enjoying the water.

What kayak works best? I feel that its best to use a stable sit on top tandem kayak for a child’s first paddling experience. There are many to choose from. I am using the Emotion Tandemonium and the Native U-14.5. Both kayaks are very stable and comfortable. As your child grows older you may want to put him or her in their own kayak. There are many manufacturers that make smaller kayaks that children can paddle. My advice would be to locate your local dealer and demo as many kayaks as possible.

How to keep them interested? On the water there are many different things to keep them interested. Let the child help with paddling, this will give him or her sense of pride and importance. A little praise will go a long way with the little ones. Children are always looking to learn new things. Take the time to explain and teach them about kayaking. Take the time to stop on sand bars or beaches. Let them get out and explore these areas. These sand bars and beaches are also a great place for a shore lunch. Do some research on the area you will be kayaking and try to find areas that will be full of life; the wildlife alone can keep their minds busy.

Introducing your child to kayak fishing will take some patience. I started out catching the fish and letting my boy land them, hold them for a photo and then release. This is a great way to introduce them to fishing. Take the time to educate the young ones about conservation, proper handling and releasing of fish. This is very important information that will stay with them for life, and possibly even pass it on to their little ones in the future.

Kayak Fishing With Kids 2



About the Author: Steve Gibson is a SW Florida native fishing the beautiful waters of Sarasota & Tampa Bay. He operates Shallow Pockets Fishing which is Sarasota's premier kayak guide service with over 20 years of fishing experience. He specializes in targeting Snook,Redfish Trout & Tarpon throughout his region. He is a member of team Florida Paddle Sports & Reellife Gear.

Read 6868 times Last modified on Thursday, 14 June 2012 10:16


+2 # redfish chuck 2011-06-23 06:40
very nice!
+1 # Hammerhead 2011-06-23 20:15
Nice Article
-1 # Kyak Kenneth 2011-06-23 23:09
This is very sad. We have an adult out on the water with a youth which is very commendable. Age 2 is a very good age to introduce children to water activities. However the adult is not wearing a pfd, which is completely irresponsible not only for the adult's safety but for the safety of the youth. And the pfd on the youth is so loose fitting that it is of minimal safety benefit. When the child is in the water, the youth will be prone to slide out of the loose fitting pfd as the pfd floats to the water’s surface and the weight of the child’s body settles into the water. In addition a person attempting an assisted rescue of the youth could pull her right out of the pfd in the rescue attempt. In what could be a very rewarding development part of growing up, a child has been put in great endangerment. Please take some safety training classes. Teach the youth to enjoy the water "safely." As we are all only kayakers between swims.
+3 # shallow pockets 2011-06-24 09:00
You are correct, there were some safety issues that were overlooked. When fishing in general, and especialy with young children safety should be number one concern. However your comment was in poor taste and could have presented in a more polite manner.
-1 # Kyak Kenneth 2011-06-24 16:31
Child endangerment is the issue here. Putting the child at risk without proper safety considerations should be of grave concern to all of us. Safety has to be the primary concern when you are dealing with water. If things go wrong, situations have the potential of becoming very serious, very quickly. The photos in the article do not convey Safety. They ‘talked the talk’ in the article but they did not ‘walk the walk’ in the photos. It is possible the Pfd pictured on the young girl may have crotch straps which would be a good idea. However, a tighter, better fit over the shoulders and chest is definitely needed. And ‘Dad’ needs to wear a Pfd for his own safety as well as for the safety of his ‘daughter’. It is unfortunate that you think a comment concerning Safety and Child Endangerment is in poor taste. (Yes, I could have been more polite, however my first concern was safety. This was the more polite response as compared to my reactions expressed in the first draft of my comments.)
+1 # shallow pockets 2011-06-24 20:47
Kyak Kenneth. Please submit an article on proper PFD usage please.
# YakSushi 2011-06-25 06:59
Quoting shallow pockets:
Kyak Kenneth. Please submit an article on proper PFD usage please.

Kenneth you may use this link to submit your article: ----->Submit an Article Link

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