Thursday 5 August 2021
  • :
  • :

Parts of the boat

There is alot of specialist terminology used in kayaking. Every different part of the boat has a specific name and purpose. Knowing what every things called and what it’s use is will help you communicate with other boaters and understand whats going on in your kayak.


How to know the parts of your kayak

Heres our quick guide to the different parts of the kayak


Bow – The front of the boat

Stern / Tail – The back of the boat

Deck – The top of the boat

Hull – The bottom of the boat

Cockpit – The hole in the deck of the boat in which you sit to control your kayak

Hip Pads – Positioned at the sides of the seat inside the boat by the edges of the seat there will be some form of hip pad designed to increase the connection between your hips and the boat that will help you control your boat.

Seat / Chair – A kayak will either have a stand alone chair that is attached to the kayak or a seat built into the shape of the deck of the boat. A chair will often have an adjustable back rest and a height adjustment systems. Where as a seat will have a backrest to lean against.

Footrest / Plate / Bag – The part at the bow of your kayak designed to support your feet. If you place you feet against the footrest you can use it to help control your kayak

Thigh Braces / Thigh Grips – The hook style parts towards the front of the cockpit that the paddles thighs rest against and that is used to help control the kayak

Grab Handles / Security Loops – The handles found on the bow and stern of the kayak that can be used to carry, secure or rescue a kayak

Drain Bung / Plug – The hole with a bung at the stern of the kayak that can be used to drain water from the kayak

Back Rest / Band – At the back of the seat there will be some sort of support for your back designed to help you sit in a good paddling posture and to control the kayak

Foam Walls – At the front and the back of the boat you will have foam walls. These walls are part of the structural strength of the kayak they also provide additional floatation to your kayak

Air bags / flotation bags – in the stern and possibly the bow of your boat you should have air bags these specially designed flotation bags help the boat float in the event of a capsize.

Edge / Rail – The lines that run from the front to the back of the boat. Help control and steer the boat as you paddle through the water.

Rudder – The adjustable device that hangs from the back of boat under the hull that can be used to help steer the kayak

Scuppers – Holes that go from the deck through the hull of the kayak that drain water out of the deck of sit-on-top kayaks as well as add structural support for standing or sitting on the deck.
Hatches – A variety of closures to storage holes in the deck that allow you to store rods, tackle, food, camping gear, etc..     Some are held closed with bungees, some are press fit, and some have latches.


Top Tips

Its a good idea to check your kayak each time before you head out onto the water to make sure everything is in place and in good working order so that you can have the best days paddling possible.