Make an Informed Choice after Reading Our Kayak Paddle Reviews
It’s hard to beat the fun and excitement of spending a day on the water kayaking. Beginners find themselves quickly hooked, and experienced kayakers rarely give up on the sport. But to truly enjoy your time out on the water, you need a good paddle – one that won’t tire you out.
Shoreline Marine Kayak Paddle Rounded 96″
Our favorite for 2020
SeaSense X-1 Kayak Paddle
A great value option
SeaSense X-TREME II Kayak Paddle
Comes in 2 different colors and sizes
Whether you’re looking for the best fishing kayak paddle or a simple model that will see you through all of your kayaking adventures, you’ll find that you have a lot of options to choose from. Consider these points when you’re comparing models:
- Paddle Length: One of the most important things to consider is the length of the paddle. The right length for you will be largely dependent on the size of your kayak and your own height. The taller or wider your kayak, the bigger your paddle will need to be. You’ll find that most paddles come in sizes of 84” or 96,” but there are other sizes available as well. Determine which size you need before you consider buying any paddle.
- Quality: Never underestimate the importance of quality when buying a paddle. Poor quality models never last long, and the last thing you want is for the blade or shaft to break mid-trip. Look for paddles made of aluminum or fiberglass for maximum durability.
- Ratings: While you’re researching each paddle, take the time to check ratings and reviews from buyers. Ratings will give you an idea of the paddle’s quality, so you know whether to consider buying it, or moving on.
We’ve done our best to make the paddle-buying process as simple and easy as possible by rounding up five of the best models on the market.
The Top Kayak Paddles for 2020
Shoreline Marine Kayak Paddle – Measuring 96” in length, the Shoreline Marine kayak paddle features a three-position system that allows you to customize the paddle to your needs. When your adventure is through, simply disassemble the paddle into two pieces for easy transport.
Each paddle features drip guards designed to help keep you dry, and its contour molded blades allow you to move through the water with ease. Foam grips add comfort, and the aluminum shaft prevents corrosion.
Great for users of all heights, this paddle is ideal for both long and short trips alike.
If you’re looking for an affordable paddle that offers the ease of use and durability of higher-end models, the Shoreline Marine is a great option.
SeaSense X-Treme II – The SeaSense X-Treme II is a sea kayak paddle that comes in two sizes and features a feathered blade design. Lightweight yet durable, this paddle is ideal for all of your kayaking adventures.
The X-Treme II is available in lengths of 84” and 94,” so you can choose the right size for your needs. The three locking positions allow you to customize the fit, while the support ridge adds strength.
Adjustable drip guards are built-in to keep you dry while you paddle. The aluminum shaft is resistant to corrosion for exceptional durability.
Like the previous paddle on our list, this model can be broken down into two pieces for easy storage when it’s not in use.
If you’re in need of a shorter paddle, the X-Treme II is a smart choice.
SeaSense X-1 Kayak Paddle – The X-1 from SeaSense is similar to the X-Treme II in design and durability, but it only comes in a length of 84”.
Complete with ergonomic foam grips and adjustable drip rings, this paddle will keep you dry and comfortable while you’re out on the water. The X-1 is also lightweight and balanced, so you can paddle for longer without getting fatigued.
The aluminum shaft can be disassembled into two pieces for easy storage in between uses. The shaft is also resistant to corrosion, adding to the durability of this model.
The X-1 is a bit lower in price than the X-Treme II, so if you’re on a tighter budget and need an 84” paddle, this model is a great option.
SeaSense X-Treme II Mix – The X-Treme II Mix is nearly identical to the X-Treme II. The only real difference between the two models is the color of the paddles. The Mix comes in two colors: Blue/White and Orange/Yellow.
These bright, colorful paddles let you show off your personality when you’re out kayaking. But they also allow you to paddle for longer without getting fatigued thanks to its smart design.
Like the original X-Treme II, this model has a feathered blade design for optimal propulsion. Adjustable drop guards keep you dry, while the support ridge adds strength.
Three locking positions allow you to choose the right fit for you, and the shaft disassembles to allow for easy storage. Foam grips add comfort while preventing slips.
Carlisle Magic Plus – The Magic Plus paddle from Carlisle is exceptionally lightweight (just 35.6 oz.) and comes in three different lengths: 220cm, 230cm and 240cm.
The Magic Plus is perhaps the most high-end paddle on our list, and that’s primarily because of the shaft. All of the other paddles on this list have an aluminum shaft. This model has a lightweight fiberglass shaft.
The polypropylene blades are filled with fiberglass, and there two bright colors to choose from: sunrise (orange/yellow) and cloud (blue/white).
The great thing about fiberglass is that it’s durable yet flexible. This paddle can achieve strong, powerful strokes while offering the flexibility needed to minimize stress on the joints.
If you’re an experienced kayaker looking for a high-end paddle, the Carlisle Magic Plus is the right choice for you.
Buyer’s Guide – How to Choose the Right Option from All the Kayak Paddles on the Market
We’ve provided you with reviews for some of the top-selling paddles out there, but how do you narrow down your choices to just one? Here’s how to choose the right paddle:
- Size and Comfort Level: We talked about the length of the paddle earlier, and it cannot be stressed enough that you need to choose an appropriate length for your kayak and your height. Comfort level is also important. Look for paddles that have foam grips to prevent fatigue and discomfort while you’re out on the water.
- Weight: The heavier the paddle is, the more difficult it will be to paddle for longer periods of time. Opt for lightweight models, so you can maximize your time out on the water. Aluminum and fiberglass are both light, but fiberglass is the lightest option between the two.
- Blade Design: Some blades have a feathered design, while others have a spoon-like shape. A feathered design may allow for more powerful strokes, while other shapes may be better suited for rougher or calmer waters. Consider your environment, and use that to help you find the right blade design.
- Price: Finally, you need to consider your budget. How much you spend will likely depend on how experienced and invested you are in the sport. If you’re a serious kayaker, it’s often worth the extra cost to invest in a high-end paddle (like the Magic Plus) that’s lightweight and will last for years to come. If you’re just getting started, you may prefer to use a less expensive paddle until you decide whether this is a sport you’ll enjoy.