Kayaking is fun. However, when you are not comfortable in your kayak seat, your focus will be more towards the seat and your balance and not in what’s around you. Not every seat is ideal for everyone. Some seats could work for certain paddlers, but others may find those to be over their budget and not what they want.

If you need a kayak seat upgrade, you must set your preferences first. Do you want proper support for your back or minimal support would work? What is your budget range? Are you willing to make some compromises like going beyond your budget or choosing a seat that was not initially the plan? It is better to know all about the Kayak seats before making the final purchase.

Types of Kayak Seats

Kayaks come in different shapes and sizes, but they have one thing in common. They need to have a comfortable seat for you to sit on and enjoy nature and adventure around you. And it’s not just about comfort. A sit-on-top kayak seat that is not secure or lacks good quality can throw you out of the kayak and risk your life. For this reason, you need to choose your seat wisely, and make sure it is properly attached and adjusted.

There are three main types of kayak seats that you can choose from:

Basic Seat: As the name indicates, it is the simple sit-on-top kayak seat that you can sit on. You should expect some level of padding to make sitting more comfortable, however, there are some without any cushioning. For a better padding experience, you can have a kayak seat upgrade to the deluxe one.

Deluxe Seat: A deluxe seat has a proper padding mechanism to give you long hours of comfort, as compared to the basic seat. It is ideal for paddlers who want to avoid any strain on their back, are already going through some back issues, or are not properly secured in their cockpits. Some deluxe seats also have a high backrest. It is important to note that not every deluxe seat is compatible with every type of kayak. Some deluxe seats do not fit properly on sit-on kayaks. So, before you make your final purchase, ensure that your seat, as well as the kayak, are compatible with each other.

High Back Seat: A high back seat provides excellent support to your spinal cord and is specially used by anglers (in their angler kayaks). These seats are extremely useful when the kayak has to sit for a long duration. In many instances, if the paddlers are tall, the high back seat provides sturdy support and alignment to the body. Make sure your high back seat and the kayak are compatible with each other.

Inflatable Seat: The inflatable kayak seats are gaining more popularity with each passing day due to their practicality. These seats are easy to carry, handle, and store. Some paddlers believe that they are not very comfortable, however, many specially designed (and comfortable) inflatable seats are now available in the market. So, you can have the best of both worlds – comfort and practicality.

No matter what kind of kayak seat you choose, it can be a major concern if it is not securely attached. Whether you have one seat, 2 seat kayak, or more, make sure every component is properly attached to the kayak before heading out on your trip.

Best Kayak Seats on the Market

There are several factors you need to consider when buying a kayak seat that works best for you. Your ideal kayak seat needs to be comfortable and stable. Having extra storage is a huge plus and will come in handy in your kayaking adventures. However, if storage is not a major requirement for you (you can have storage in your kayak bags and jacket, etc.), you should go for the kayak seat that you need, even if it does not have some of the fancy features other paddlers want or other kayak seats have.

Here are some of our most recommended kayak seats for you:

Per Trade’s Universal Antiskid Kayak Seat with Backrest

Whether you are kayaking, rafting, drifting, or canoeing, you need to be comfortable to enjoy the sport. This Universal Antiskid Kayak Seat is suitable for all these water adventures. It provides you with the padded comfort that gives your back the support and comfort it needs. It is specially designed keeping most of the canoes and kayaks in mind with dimensions of 30 x 24.4 inches (or 66 x 62cms). The antiskid feature makes the seat stable and the high back design adds comfort to your adventure.

The base of the Universal Antiskid Kayak Seat has a 1.9 cm of cushion and the backrest is around 2.5 to 3 cm thick. It is made of good quality Nylon, EVA, and metal components. With hooks and adjustable straps, you can conveniently fine-tune your seat cushioning making sure what you are sitting on provides you with the best comfort possible. It is available in an attractive black color.

Pros:

  • Comfortable backrest.
  • Antiskid, soft, and comfortable base.
  • Easy to install the seat and remove it.
  • Good quality copper hooks that do not get rusty when exposed to seawater.
  • Nylon exterior offers a built-in ventilation system for easy drying and cooling off.
  • Fits perfectly on most types of kayaks and canoes.

Cons:

  • There is no extra storage.

Surf To Summit Classic Molded Foam Kayak Seat

You cannot just sit on any kayak seat for a long duration if you have a back issue or are quite tall. You need better back support which is only possible in a sit-on-top kayak seat which has a sturdy construction and is specially designed keeping your back in mind.

The Surf To Summit’s Classic Molded Foam Kayak Seat can be ideal for you and your back. It comes with very durable molded foam with the fabric welded in it, making the seat extremely stable and strong, even after prolonged use. So, you do not have to worry about the fabric tearing or ripping apart while you are on the go. The seat is made from rugged 600 denier fabric that is great for adventure sports like kayaking and canoeing as it provides the firmness and durability that is needed in kayak seats. The seat is made in the USA and can be easily attached to your kayak – no fuss at all! With a back length of 17.5 inches and a width of 24 inches, along with the seat-cushion dimensions of 13 x 14 x 0.75 inches (LxWxH), this comfortable kayak seat may be the one you are looking for.

Pros:

  • Available in three options: no pack, fishing pack, and zipper pack.
  • It provides sturdy back support, so it is excellent for people with sensitive back or prevailing back issues.
  • Ideal for tall paddlers.
  • The fabric is welded into the foam making the seat super sturdy and hard to tear.
  • Easy to install and remove.

Cons:

  • This kayak seat may be a little firm (due to having not as much cushion in the base as it has at the back) for some paddlers. In such cases, you can put an additional pad underneath it.

WOOWAVE Kayak Seat with High Back Support and Detachable Back Storage Bag

Whether you have a sit-on kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard with D-rings, you can attach the WOOWAVE’s Kayak Seat that comes with a year-long guarantee. This kayak seat is light in weight, sturdy, and generously padded. It has been specially designed keeping your lumbar support in mind, so whether you are concerned about your upper or lower back, the WOOWAVE Kayak Seat gives you the well-padded comfort you crave for.

This kayak seat is made of extremely durable EVA foam with an external covering made from excellent quality 210D Polyester. You can easily install this seat on, as well as remove from, your kayak or boat. The high back design of this deluxe kayak seat gives your body complete support. The thick foam seat cushion provides a comfortable base so you can do prolong sitting in your fishing, canoeing, kayaking, or boating voyages.

The best thing about this kayak seat is that it comes with extra storage which is nothing less than a blessing in your kayaking adventures. You can attach or detach your storage back (with the help of provided clips) and can store handy items like your cellphone, snacks, etc. Moreover, this storage pouch is waterproof, and you can detach it and take it along with you, making this add-on highly practical.

Pros:

  • It comes with a detachable waterproof storage bag.
  • Four-way adjustable straps along with sturdy copper hooks.
  • High back support with great quality thick foam cushion.
  • The non-slip seat keeps your body stable and not get off-balance.
  • The kayak seat fits on most sit-on kayaks, canoes, rowboats, and fishing boats.
  • Easy to install and remove.

Cons:

  • None reported yet.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How to Make Kayak Seats More Comfortable?

Kayaks nowadays are designed to be more comfortable than they used to be. However, you may still find many adjustment issues with them. For instance: their pans could be shorter than what you would ideally want to provide a better space to your thighs, and they may not provide you with the back support you are looking for, etc. To make your kayak seat more comfortable, consider doing the following:

  • Add extra pads: Adding a pad to your kayak seat is a great way to give your body the comfort to go kayaking for many hours. The pad has a gel inside it that keeps on shifting places depending upon the pressure your body exerts on it. This way, your body can get the right padding at the right place (especially good for your hips and lower back).
  • Add some thigh support: You can add some inflatable support to your thighs that will reduce pressure on them while you paddle. Such thigh supports are easy to adjust. In some cases, they come with the kayak, and often the seller charges a small fee for them.
  • Adjust the height of your seat: You can make your seat more comfortable by raising or lowering its height – whichever works best for you. You will notice that making the seat higher will help you with improving the speed. However, you need to make sure there is a balance as a seat too high may become unstable and hence could be quite risky for your safety.
  • Adjusting the back tilt: Once you are inside your kayak, you can adjust the back tilt for some added comfort. This will let you lean back and stretch out your body.

How to Install a Kayak Seat?

You need to install your kayak seat correctly as incorrect installation may throw you in water and risk your life. A poorly installed kayak seat may cause jerks to your body while you are kayaking, which could lead to serious issues. When your seat is comfortably installed, you can have more fun and freedom in your adventure. Here is how to install your kayak seat:

  1. Start by locating where you want to attach the straps. Whether you have a 2 seat kayak or any other kind, it is important to determine where you plan to be seated.
  2. Now attach the clips. The straps that are at the top of the seat will attach in the front of your kayak seat, and the lower straps will be attached at the back of your seat.
  3. Slowly, tighten the straps until you are 100% satisfied with the seat’s position. The kayak seat should not move when you are using it, so make sure you have tightened it enough.

To get the most out of your kayaking adventure, it is best to have your back-rest at a vertical position, or at least as vertical as possible.

How to Secure a Kayak Seat?

It is very important for you to securely install your sit-on-top kayak seat. Your kayak seat is not secure for you if it is not properly strapped and adjusted according to your body, and your seat keeps on sliding. An unsecured seat may end up risking your life.

  • To secure your kayak seat, make sure the four tie points are properly strapped.
  • The two straps on the side will go forward and the two straps on the back will go behind the seat.
  • You must tighten your seat by pulling the bottom straps from both sides.
  • Adjust the side straps by sitting down in your kayak seat. You can know if your kayak seat is perfectly adjusted only when you sit on it. You can lean forward and pull to tighten a strap and lean backward and release to loosen it.

Kayaking is a wonderful sport and you can enjoy it to the max with the right kayak seat. Your ideal seat needs to be comfortable, stable, and sturdy. Once you get the seat you were looking for, securely attach it to your kayak, and enjoy the water!