Best Kayak Paddle to buy in 2020 – Complete Buyer’s Guide & Review

best kayak paddle

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Last Updated on June 3, 2020 by Michael J. Branco

In recent years, more and more water lovers appreciate kayaks. If you happen to be one of them, then you know how important it is to have the most suitable paddle to pair with your kayak. Having the right paddle will significantly increase your performance, whether you are in calm or rapid waters. However, to find the right paddles, you first need to consider a few things.  Finding the best kayak paddle is not an easy task as there are various types of kayaks are available in the market.

In this article, we will be guiding you on how to choose the best kayak paddle and provide a few suggested paddles that have been positively reviewed by many.

Comparison Table: Top Rated Best kayak Paddle

Preview
Best Pick
Leader Accessories Kayak Paddle 3 Sizes 7 Colors...
Best Pick
MSC Kayak Paddle,Color Available...
Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle
ADVANCED ELEMENTS Ultralite Pack Kayak Paddle
XGEAR Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87-Inch 96-Inch for...
AQUA BOUND Eagle Ray Carbon 2-Piece Kayak Paddle
Title
Leader Accessories Kayak Paddle 3 Sizes 7 Colors...
MSC Kayak Paddle,Color Available...
Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle
ADVANCED ELEMENTS Ultralite Pack Kayak Paddle
XGEAR Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87-Inch 96-Inch for...
AQUA BOUND Eagle Ray Carbon 2-Piece Kayak Paddle
Material
Carbon fiber, Aluminum, Molded plastic
Anodized aluminum alloy
Carbon, Fiberglass
Aluminum
Aluminum
Carbon
Length Option( in cm)
84.7, 87, 89.7, 96, Adjustable 84-88 inches options
218.4 cm
220, 230, 240, 250, 260, 215, 220, 250 cm
224 cm
220cm 230 cm
215, 210, 220, 230, 240, 250 cm
Color
Black, white, yellow, orange, blue, green and white combination, and green
Black, Yellow, White, Olive, Blue
Amber, Green, Peacock, Lime Drift, Gradient Abyss, Gradient Citrus, Gradient Sunset, Red, Golden, Translucent Amber, Charcoal
Black
Black, Blue, Orange, White, Yellow
Black
Best Pick
Preview
Leader Accessories Kayak Paddle 3 Sizes 7 Colors...
Title
Leader Accessories Kayak Paddle 3 Sizes 7 Colors...
Material
Carbon fiber, Aluminum, Molded plastic
Length Option( in cm)
84.7, 87, 89.7, 96, Adjustable 84-88 inches options
Color
Black, white, yellow, orange, blue, green and white combination, and green
Check Latest Price
Best Pick
Preview
MSC Kayak Paddle,Color Available...
Title
MSC Kayak Paddle,Color Available...
Material
Anodized aluminum alloy
Length Option( in cm)
218.4 cm
Color
Black, Yellow, White, Olive, Blue
Check Latest Price
Preview
Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle
Title
Werner Camano Premium Fiberglass Kayak Paddle
Material
Carbon, Fiberglass
Length Option( in cm)
220, 230, 240, 250, 260, 215, 220, 250 cm
Color
Amber, Green, Peacock, Lime Drift, Gradient Abyss, Gradient Citrus, Gradient Sunset, Red, Golden, Translucent Amber, Charcoal
Check Latest Price
Preview
ADVANCED ELEMENTS Ultralite Pack Kayak Paddle
Title
ADVANCED ELEMENTS Ultralite Pack Kayak Paddle
Material
Aluminum
Length Option( in cm)
224 cm
Color
Black
Check Latest Price
Preview
XGEAR Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87-Inch 96-Inch for...
Title
XGEAR Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87-Inch 96-Inch for...
Material
Aluminum
Length Option( in cm)
220cm 230 cm
Color
Black, Blue, Orange, White, Yellow
Check Latest Price
Preview
AQUA BOUND Eagle Ray Carbon 2-Piece Kayak Paddle
Title
AQUA BOUND Eagle Ray Carbon 2-Piece Kayak Paddle
Material
Carbon
Length Option( in cm)
215, 210, 220, 230, 240, 250 cm
Color
Black
Check Latest Price

Top 10 Best kayak Paddle Product Review

01- XGEAR Aluminum Kayak Paddles

best kayak paddle

This beautifully designed kayak paddle can be the key to keep you at the right speed. The materials used for the paddle handle is aluminum. The aluminum body assures that the handles are lightweight and will not rust over time, making it extremely durable. The paddle blades are made out of plastic, which can withstand significant waves making you maneuver your kayak a lot easier. It also floats in the water, too, so you do not have to worry much about losing your paddles. 

Aside from what is mentioned above, the grips of the handle of this paddle have a rubber coating. This makes sure that it does not easily slip off your hand. The sizes of these paddles come with a variant that helps make proportion easier regardless of what your height is. 

Features

  • 220 cm and 243 cm sizes
  • Five color options ( Black, Blue, Orange, White, and Yellow)
  • Three lock positions
  • Push-button connection
  • Easy to adjust to your dominant hand
  • Drip rings
Pros
  • Easy to store
  • Lightweight
  • It has no-slip mechanisms
Cons
  • It cannot be delivered in certain areas

02. Vibe Aluminum Kayak Paddles

best kayak paddle

If you happen to be a beginner in the world of Kayak and looking for your first paddles, then this is the ideal choice for you. It is excellent regardless of what style of paddling and level of expertise you have. It is made with durable materials such as aluminum and polypropylene, which ensure that it will withstand the test of time and usage. 

In terms of design, this paddle is not second to any. It has a unique oval shape section that makes it easier for users to change hand placement. This specific shape also increases stroke efficiency. This design also improves the quality of the grip. With this paddle, rest assure that you will hardly find any blisters on your hand as the rubberized grip it has is superb. 

Features

  • 230 cm long
  • 40 ounces
  • Comes with two drip rings
  • Two snap buttons for 0 or 60 angles ( left or right)
  • Aluminum shaft
  • Polypropelene blade
Pros
  • Efficient design
  • Easy-grip
  • Easy to maneuver
  • Sturdy
  • Value for money
Cons
  • No color option
  • It does not float on water for an extended amount of time

03. MSC Kayak Paddle

best kayak paddle

This model is one of the best entry-level kayak paddles in the market today. It is excellent for a relaxing cruise along a river or an exciting adventure through the rapids. The primary material used for the construction of this paddle is aluminum. This material assures that the paddles are lightweight and protected against rust. 

The shaft of this paddle has three offset angles that make the paddles more responsive to your needs. Aside from that, you do not have to worry about the length as it comes with two options that will surely make you comfortable with your paddles.

Features

  • Aluminum alloy shaft
  • Plastic blades
  • Wear-resistant
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Three offset angles
  • Support ridge
  • Drip guards
  • Foam grips
  • Six color options
Pros
  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Sturdy
  • Comfortable grip
  • Length options
Cons
  • Grip becomes smooth slides off when wet

04. Advanced Element Kayak Paddles

best kayak paddle

One of the biggest problems people face with kayaks is its weight, which makes it difficult to carry around. That being said, because your boat is already substantial, it is only logical for you to pick a paddle that is lightweight and easy to bring to ease your struggle, and the advance element kayak paddles are precisely what is best for you. 

It only weighs a total of 23.6 ounces and can be collapsable to up 60 cm. These paddles are also great for beginners as it is no fuss and is straightforward to use. 

Features

  • 23.6 ounces
  • 224 cm full length
  • Foldable to 60cm
  • Four parts
  • Fixed blade positions
  • Curve blade design
Pros
  • Great for backpacking
  • Saves storage space
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Difficult to assemble and disassemble
  • Fixed blade position
  • Single color options

05. Leader Accessories Aluminum Kayak Paddle

best kayak paddle for fishing

This two-piece take a part kayak paddles is ideal for adventurers who are on the go. This is one of the products that are affordable but durable as well. The materials used for the shalt are a combination of carbon fiber and aluminum that makes it durable. Meanwhile, the blades are made of molded plastic that does not quickly wrap after a few seasons of usage. 

It also has a smart design drip ring that prevents you from getting unintentionally wet from the waters. The blades are also equipped with a feathered design, which makes it more aerodynamic. Lastly, what makes this kayak paddle awesome is the variety of colors and lengths that they offer. 

Features

  • Carbon fiber and aluminum shaft
  • Can be separate to 2 pieces
  • Molded plastic blades
  • Feathered design blades
  • Push-button connections
  • Available in 5 sizes ( 84.7, 87, 89.7, 96, Adjustable 84-88 inches options) 
  • Available in 7 colors ( Black, white, yellow, orange, blue, green and white combination, and green)
Pros
  • Space-saving
  • Portable
  • Sturdy
  • Durable materials
  • Water-resistant
  • Feather blade design
  • The paddles float
Cons
  • Heavy

06. Oru Adjustable Kayak Paddle 

best kayak paddle for kids

This portable Kayak paddle is a step up from the heavy and ragged kayak rental paddles you can get. It is made with lightweight and durable material that makes your money worth it. You will save more if you buy these than renting paddles every time you use your kayak. 

The best feature of this paddle is that almost everything is adjustable to the user. The length of the shaft can start at 220cm long but can be adjusted up to 230. Meanwhile, the blades can also be adjusted depending on your preferred setting. These paddles can easily be retrieved from the water if you lose your grip because they will float. 

Features

  • Stowaway in 4 pieces
  • Reinforced steel shaft
  • ABS plastic blades
  • Stainless steel button connectors (marine grade)
  •  The white and black color pattern
  • 2.54 lbs
Pros
  • Durable
  • Compact
  • Lightweight
  • Adjustable
  • Adjustable length from 220-230 cm
  • Adjustable angles
Cons
  • Available in a single color variant

07. Aqua-Bound Eagle Ray 2 Pieces Carbon Kayak Paddle

lightest kayak paddle

This is the paddle that you would want to take with you on a long kayak journey. Carbon is a material that is a lot lighter than aluminum. The difference is significant, primarily when you use it often. 

Many have noted that by shifting to carbon paddles, they feel lesser fatigue in their arms. This is because this paddle grabs water with better and with lower effort through stronger strokes.

This specific model is proudly made in the USA that fully adheres to the required standards. It is also portable as it can be separated into two parts during transit. The assembly of the two components is straightforward, as well. 

Features

  • Made in the United States
  • 2 Pieces
  • With a snap button ferrule or Posi-look.
  • Oval Shafts
  • Carbon reinforce ABx resin Blade
  • Comes with a pair of drip rings
  • Comes in 6 length variants ( 215, 210, 220, 230, 240, 250 cm) 
Pros
  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Adjustable angles
  • Easy and comfortable grip
Cons
  • Blades are not that stiff

08. Sea Eagle 4 Part Kayak Paddle

best budget kayak paddle

If you are on a budget and you are looking for a right kayak paddle, then this one is for you. For its price, you get portability and durability. It weighs 2.7 pounds, which is not that bad in terms of weight. The materials used for the shaft is aluminum which makes it rust-resistant. The tube is in the shaft makes it able to sufficiently float on water in the event where you might lose grip of the paddle. 

The feature of this paddle that it highly takes pride in is the fact that it can be folded in 4 different parts. Dismantling the paddle is pretty straightforward, as well as they assemble. When the paddle is constructed, it is secure with a snap-lock mechanism that prevents it from snapping back. 

Features

  • Weighs 2.7 pounds
  • 7 ft. 11 inches long
  • Feathered up to 60 degrees
  • Four parts stowaway
  • Snap-lock buttons
  • Thirty-three inches long when folded.
  • Aluminum shaft
  • Fibrylon paddles
Pros
  • Floats on water
  • Comfortable to the hands
  • Easy to assemble and dismantle
  • Affordable
  • Space-saving
  • Portable
  • Sturdy
Cons
  • One-color option

09. Werner Camano Fiberglass Kayak Paddles

best whitewater kayak paddle

This paddle can easily slice through the water as if there is no kind of resistance at all. The shaft is made of a carbon blend material that makes it extremely lightweight as it only weighs 1.9 pounds. The texture still feels like the traditional aluminum paddles. You do not have to worry about sore arms and fatigue with this one. 

This paddle also comes with eight-length varieties, which ensure that they got the right ones for you. This paddle truly lives up to its hype. Aside from its practical use, you can also note that the color design is far from the basics. They offer 11 color options that are not your usual kayak paddle color designs.

Features

  • 8 sizes options ( 220, 230, 240, 250, 260, 215, 220, 250) 
  • 11 color options ( Amber, Green, Peacock, Lime Drift, Gradient Abyss, Gradient Citrus, Gradient Sunset, Red, Golden, Translucent Amber, Charcoal)
  • Straight shaft made out of carbon blend. 
  • Fiberglass blades
  • Ferrule system (adjustable
  • Left to right 15 degrees feather
  • 1.9 pounds
Pros
  • Stiff
  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • Easy to use
  • Ideal for relaxing cruise
Cons
  • Not suitable for use on rocky waters

10. Vibe Fiberglass Evolve Kayak Paddle

carlisle magic plus kayak paddle

If you are looking for a paddle that your family can take turns using, then this one is what you are looking for. The diversity of these paddles makes it suitable for any type of kayak seating and any individual who is using it. The length can be adjusted from 230 up to 250 cm. 

Its fiberglass shaft makes it durable and lightweight. The shape of the cylinder makes it easier to handle too. You also do not have to worry about the blades warping because it is made of nylon, which is a stiff and durable material. 

Features

  • Shaft length is adjustable from 230 cm up to 250 cm.
  • Comes with drip rings
  • Dihedral blades
  • Ferrule angles from 0 up to 60 degrees. ( left or right) 
  • Snap button mechanism
  • Three color option (Caribbean Blue, Smoke Gray, Tsunami Red) 
  • Water transferred graphics
  • Fiberglass shaft
  • Nylon blades
Pros
  • It can be adjusted depending on the seating level of the user.
  • Length can be adjusted depending on the proportion of the user.
  • It has use graphic design in 3 different colors
  • Durable
  • Functional
  • Practical
Cons
  • Not perfect for rock water

What to Look Out for When Buying a Best Kayak Paddles

Water Condition

Some Kayak paddles are designed for a relaxing cruise down a stream. If that is how you use it, then you could go for an entry-level paddle. However, if you mean to use your paddles for more extreme purposes such as transversing rapids, go for more durable and sturdy paddles. Remember, before purchasing any paddles; you should consider the water conditions that your paddles will be facing. 

Materials

Since Kayaking is a water activity, you must look for paddles that are constructed with appropriate water materials. One of the best choices of materials used on paddles out there is aluminum because it does not rust compared to plain iron. Aside from that, aluminum is also lightweight and durable. In terms of blades, look for those that are made of heavy-duty plastic. Plastic is more ideal in water because they are bendy enough but not too flimsy that they natural warp against a strong wave. 

Length 

Paddle length should be one of your most essential considerations when buying a kayak paddle. This is because it will significantly affect how you maneuver and handle your kayak. The length of the oars must be appropriate to your height. At the same time, you should be able to feel that you are comfortable rowing it around. Ideally, the length of your paddle should be proportionate to the extent of your boat and your height. Refer to several kayak paddle length charts online for more details about this. 

Grip

The quality of the grip of a paddle should also be an essential consideration. Since the activity is in the water, some grip may become slippery at some point. This is why it is crucial to look for a product that has either a rubber or foam grip. Rubber and foam grip are a lot easier to hold even if they are wet. It is less slippery. Another reason to choose these kinds of grips is that they are more gentle to the hands. They are less likely to cause blisters even if you use them significantly. 

Design

Like other products, the design should be a primary consideration. You have to take the shaft and the blade designs a closer look. Longer rods are harder to use, especially when it is not proportionate with your body. Aside from that, pick a shaft that can be easily folded or separated into two for more practical travel and packing. 

In terms of blades, a narrow blade generates less resistance to water. It is ideal for a relaxing cruise around calm waters. However, if you are going to face rapids, a full blade is more suitable as it gives users a greater push, but it would require a significant amount of strength to row. 

Color

A paddle that has a bright and vibrant color would make it easier to find if your hands slip off it. This is why when looking for the best kayak paddle, go for the one that has an easy to see color. Color such as blue, green, and white can be challenging to find in the waters as their color may blend into the environment. 

Price

Know the price range of the kayak paddles depending on their level of usage. This way, you will be able to gauge whether what you are paying for is worth the product that you are giving. Remember, the quality of an item does not necessarily reflect its pricing. Hence, be more vigilant and careful with your purchases. 

Frequently Asked Question

How to choose a kayak paddle?

The first thing that you have to do to choose the right paddle for your kayak is to identify the length of your boat and your height. After that, select a material that is within your price range. Then, determine what design of paddle blades you want as they vary in performance depending on the water conditions.

What is a drip ring?

A drip ring is an added attachment to a kayak paddle that prevents water from splashing to the user’s lap. This is an ideal additive for those who do not want to get themselves wet or if they have electronics and gadgets on board. 

What is the blade feathering?

Blade feathering refers to the alignment of paddles. The paddle blade can either be feathered or matched. Feathered blades have a different angle with each other. Having this kind of setting mitigates the wind resistance against the blade when they are rowed out of the water. Meanwhile, a matched blade has the same plane and angle. This is the more traditional and entry-level setting of most paddle blades. However, there are some paddle blades that you can set to either matched or feathered, depending on your preference and style. 

What is the difference between a kayak and a canoe?

Many may think that kayaks and canoes are the same, but they are not. They may have a significant similarity, but the difference between them is that the paddler in canoe kneels why the paddler in kayak seats down. Aside from that, their paddle blades also significantly differ. The kayak paddles are double-bladed while the canoe paddles only have one blade. 

Final Thoughts

Having a suitable kayak paddle is essential so that you will be able to enjoy your adventure to the fullest. Kayak paddles should not make you feel fatigued. Instead, it should help your ease and glide through the waters. 

If you want a paddle for the whole family, we highly suggest the Vibe Fiberglass Evolve due to its adjustability. If you are going for a portable kayak paddle, then go for the Sea Eagle 4 part kayak paddle or the Advance element. Check out the other suggestions too because they all have their uniqueness that may suit your priorities and preference. 

Hopefully, the information mentioned above was able to provide you information on how to choose the best kayak paddle for you and what are the current best options in the market.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases

Last update on 2020-11-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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