Stand Up Kayak Fishing – From Fantasy To Reality

Kayak fishing has widely been considered as an outlandish fantasy since the advent of the craft itself. Fishing kayak manufacturers know that their products are completely incapable of supporting this option, so they scoff at the idea and say it’s contradictory to ‘classic kayak fishing’.

Then, in view of a growing demand for stable fishing kayaks, fishing kayak manufacturers realized they had to come up with some kind of response, so they began offering increasingly wide sit-on-top (SOP) fishing kayaks that became almost impossible to paddle, but were promoted as being stable enough to allow stand up kayak fishing.

Some people fell for this hype, but they soon realized that although the new, extra-wide fishing kayaks were indeed stabler, they weren’t nearly as stable as would be required to fish standing up. This has to do with both lack of initial stability and secondary stability, as well as the fact that such kayaks do not offer a ‘Plan B’, that is a solution for dealing with situations where the angler has already been destabilized, as it often happens, and they are facing the unwanted possibility of falling overboard with their fishing gear and tackle following them.

Then, some manufacturers began offering solutions based on kayak outriggers. Those may have improved initial stability, but they could not solve the problem of ‘what if” – that is what should the angler do if and when they lose balance in their kayak, and are forced to fall overboard – an event usually described as ‘going swimming’.

So far, the only fishing kayaks to provide adequate initial and secondary stability, as well as a solution in case the standing kayak angler lose their stability are the kayaks made by Wavewalk Fishing Kayaks, due to the combination of optimal kayak stability and a saddle that the angler can fall on, and regain balance instantly.

MOTORIZE IT!

2012 was the year of the motorized fishing kayak – Not just a common sit-n or SOT kayak outfitted with a lame electric trolling motor, but the real thing: a motorboat as American anglers understand it, and this means a boat powered by a gas engine – typically an outboard motor.
And by motorboat we don’t mean one that offers just inland fishing on flat water but cannot be used for offshore fishing – What we’re talking about is real ocean fishing capabilities, from surf launching to trips that are several times longer than what electric motors may enable before they run out of electricity.
This also means sufficient stability for stand up fishing, dryness (sorry, we don’t buy the notion that kayak fishing is a wet sport…), sufficient storage space for long trips, and a comfort level that’s acceptable for anyone, and not just for young, lightweight and athletic fishermen.
And when trailers are concerned – we find that unless you’re looking for a boat that will carry you and several passengers on board, you can and should do without a trailer, not just because of the additional expense, but also because it takes room in your yard, and it takes precious time from each and every fishing trip you make. And when you consider the fact that a trailer also limits your launching and beaching options to the same spot, and one that features a boat ramp, we’re talking about a new level of freedom…

No-motor-zones? Not necessarily a problem when you can instantly switch to a human powered mode of propulsion – paddling in most cases, poling in shallow water, and rowing if you prefer!

This is no longer an experimental concept – People enjoy the advantages of fishing out of W motor kayaks worldwide, and if you ask many of them, the boat they fish from is a personal skiff that offers some extra advantages compared to small motorboats (skiff, jon boat, bass boat, etc.) and kayaks.

From now, this online kayak fishing magazine will focus exclusively on Motorized Kayak Fishing. We’ll publish articles, videos and reviews related only to motorized fishing kayaks: Inland and offshore, in shallow and deep water, in cold climates and in warmer ones, in bass fishing trips and when fishing for other fish species.

Kayak Fishing Wet Ride Problems

Paddling and fishing from kayaks is regarded by many as a hassle, because without fail the paddler or angler can expect to end up wet, and remain so for long periods of time on board their kayak, whether it’s a sit-in or sit-on-top (SOT) kayak.

Many people disdain SOT kayaks solely because paddling them and fishing from them assuredly means getting one’s feet and butt drenched with water (soggy bottom). For others, even sit-in kayaks are a no-go simply because they necessitate stepping in water upon entering and dismounting them, in no way assuring the passengers’ dryness, in fact almost certainly ensuring the eventuality of being thoroughly soaked.

An article titled ‘A Wet Ride – Problem and Solutions‘ appears on the Wavewalk fishing kayaks website, and has been regularly updated, as more information is aggregated on this subject.

This article elucidates and elaborates on the various maladies that may result from remaining wet while paddling a kayak and fishing from it. Those ailments and problems include bacterial infections, pruritic eruptions, exposure to a multitude of aquatic parasites, jaundice, muscle aches, rashes, and enlargement of the liver and spleen.

Clearly, exposure to wind while wearing wet clothes is highly conducive to hypothermia, a condition that in acute instances can lead to death. This is true more so for elderly people, and people who are in sub par physical condition due to other reasons such as recent illness, weakness, etc.

Needless to say, if you’re experiencing other kayak fishing and paddling related problems, such as sciatica, back pain, shoulder pain etc., being wet, and consequently being cold is not at all advisable, as cold contracts the muscles in the afflicted area, increasing your discomfort and pain.

In summation, avoiding continual wetness is a incontrovertibly a good idea, and the archaic sit-in and SOT kayaks universally available for paddling and fishing don’t offer adequate dry usage conditions. This is yet another serious ergonomic problem that is rarely acknowledged by kayaking and kayak fishing professionals, or by paddling and kayak fishing magazines. The prevalent attitude they usually perpetuate is “So what? If I get wet so can you, and besides, kayaking and kayak fishing are water sports, and that means you get wet!”. Such a viewpoint is unprofessional, inappropriate, and erroneous. It just serves to increase people’s discontent and frustration with kayaks.

As for yourself, if you enjoy paddling and fishing, and you dislike getting wet unnecessarily in the process, you may want to consider a W kayak, since these new, patented kayaks offer facile, dry entry and exit, and an entirely dry ride, whether you’re fishing from your kayak or just paddling it for the fun of it.

The Uncomfortable Truth About Fishing Kayaks

Whether you are paddling or even pedaling a kayak, any setup consisting of footrests with a backrest will cause you soreness of some sort in the end because you’re stuck sitting in the uncomfortable L position. Remaining confined in the L position can eventually result in a condition dubbed ‘yak back’, as well as a multitude of other ailments including leg pain, leg numbness, butt pain (a.k.a. ‘yakass’), and many others.

Irrespective of how you use your kayak, the constant pressure your legs apply on your lumbar spine is an unhealthy thing that should be refrained from. However, this problem cannot be circumvented in any kayak that’s either a sit-in or sit-on-top kayak, so what do manufacturers of such kayaks do? They can’t overlook the problem, obviously, since doing so could damage their sales. Instead, they fallaciously advertise their deficient products as being comfortable, ergonomic etc., and they suppose that even if you took one of those kayaks for a 15-20 minute test ride, it would be improbable that you would notice the problem, as it usually takes a longer duration than that for the passenger to start observing noticeable soreness.

They’ll advertise fake features such as ‘new ergonomic design’, ‘improved lumbar support’ and any other amalgamation of  buzz words that could relay a false sense of comfort, and deceive people into believing that their problem is solved.
Some kayak manufacturers go even further, and try to convince potential customers that their kayak is as comfortable as a real fishing boat, i.e. a motor boat, hoping that perhaps a few people would be tricked by their smoke and mirrors.
But since kayaking and kayak fishing trips almost always take substantially longer than average test rides, sooner rather than later you will find that the faux-comfort purported by the manufacturers of traditional kayaks is not real comfort, and you will experience serious ergonomic problems resultingly. In this case its very likely that you will give up relinquishing your kayak fishing hobby entirely, as many have done before, or suffer in silence as your kayak works against your very body. The only legitimate way to bypass this plethora of bodily ailments associated with kayak fishing is to switch to a W fishing kayak, as a growing number of kayak anglers have begun to do.

The L Posture’s Negative Affects On Kayak Fishing

The L posture that most sit-in and SOT kayakers are accustomed to being forced into when they paddle diverges from the original Inuit kayak posture, in that these antecedent kayaker designed their kayaks with neither a backrest (lumbar support) nor footrests.

Backrest and footrests were initially adjoined to these watercraft by modern kayak designers and manufacturers to restrain the paddlers and anglers who use kayaks from shifting forward. However, the cost of this augmentation is that kayakers and kayak fishermen experience discomfort that eventually results in back pain, leg pain, leg numbness and an array of other issues.

The combination of footrests and backrest creates a frame against which your legs can push forward in order to inhibit you from sliding forward. Your legs have the most robust set of muscles in your body, and as a result of their pushing on the backrest, the backrest exerts a force back on you – that’s just simple physics. This results in an ergonomic nightmare for you as the user, because the majority of this pressure is exerted on your spinal column, a very sensitive region, especially in advanced age.

Basically, this position is named the L posture, dubbed so because your legs are forced forward in a manner resembling the letter, is abnormal to your body, as well as possibly harmful in the long term:
Anatomically, your spine is construed of rigid bones, separated by discs of flexible cartilage. This structure is optimal for supporting vertical loads and efforts usual to running, walking and standing up, but not for contending with horizontal pressure like that created by the L posture.

The above image demonstrates how this works: your own legs work against your back to support you in this posture while you’re paddling and fishing.

The worst of this is that you can’t adjust yourself to a different position because this is the sole position that sit-in and SOT designs will accommodate.

Despite designers’ and manufacturers’ attempts to alleviate this problem by cushioning their kayak seats, it is impossible to fully solve the problems created by this defective design in this manner because your spine in your lower back is the sole hard object between your pelvis and your rib cage, and no matter how much cushioning is added that’s exactly where the pressure will be focused.

Another complication generated by the L kayak posture is the vertical pressure on your tailbone and butt, as illustrated by this image:

The joint weight of your upper body with a portion of the weight of your thighs presses your posterior downwards, precisely in the region wherein your sciatic nerve is situated.

Here your legs cannot support this effort, but rather they do the opposite, and exasperate the problem.

This incessant pressure causes disruptions in the regular circulation of blood to your legs,which manifests itself as leg numbness and leg pain.

Additionally, it can also harm your lower back, as your legs push harder in vain, trying to change their position and relive the the pressure on the sciatic nerve.

This swath of problems elucidates clearly why so many people who use kayaks for touring and for fishing generally feel awkward in their kayaks, and why an abundant number of them suffer from back pain and back stress.

The L posture catalyzes fatigue, leads to leg and back pain, and all in all makes kayaking and kayak fishing an uncomfortable and is a disaster from an ergonomic design standpoint. The only way to fix this design flaw is to create a new design for fishing kayaks. So far the only solution to this problem is the W fishing kayak, and its new design.