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10 Best Pedal Kayaks in 2024: Complete Review & Buyer’s Guide

Kayaking offers a delightful experience to anyone who picks interest in it. Making the right use of a paddle or pedal-powered kayak is what determines the pleasure of your experience. While traditional paddle propelled models have gained widespread popularity and have been around for centuries, their modern pedal counterparts offer more flexible and pleasurable kayaking time.

As you can use your leg muscles– the biggest ones in the body– pedaling causes a way less fatigue during long boating sessions. For that reason, you need the best pedal kayaks to propel effortlessly.

In terms of size and ergonomics, the pedal model is relatively wide, comfortable and easy to use. It fits in well for beginners and professionals alike giving kayaking a whole new meaning. A good model should offer an impressive experience offering outstanding features and cutting edge specifications.

But, how to get the top-of-the-market deal? And what are the vital information to learn before choosing one? In this comprehensive review, we’ll be exploring these questions discussing everything you need to know about these boats. Hopefully, by the end of the review, you’ll find out the ultimate pedal kayaks on the market.

Our 10 Best Pedal Kayaks Review

01 Perception Pescador Pilot Pedal kayak (Overall Top Choice)

Perception Pescador Pilot Pedal kayak

Coming first on our top list is the Perception Pescador Pilot 12′ kayak. Known for its relative comfort, stability, and safety, this pedal kayak is a top-of-the-line product. Here are the reasons why this top rated model is worth every penny.

Absolutely Comfortable: You are guaranteed to feel more comfortable on a pedal boat than on a paddle model. Most models come with a removable captain chair and a good seating arrangement with a zonal mesh that allows for cool airflow into the kayak.

Its adjustable seats also enhance its comfort by making it easy to slide back and forth as you pedal with your legs. This makes it a good choice for fishing.

Impressive instability: Our team found it to be superbly stable even with loads of fishing gear.  We loaded it with camping luggage, food cans, and all the fishing stuffs to see if it can handle balance under pressure. It features a smooth hull that helps to stay on track with less effort. It also has a spacious cockpit for easy entry, exit and pedaling.

Designed For Maximum Durability: With a high-density polyethylene material, this boat is resistant to abrasion making it durable. Besides, it is also known for its optimized weight and replaceable skid which offers additional protection to the kayak preventing any sort of corrosion. It comes in a Stainless Steel and brass hardware that assures long-lasting performance


  • Dimensions: Length-12 ft. 5 inches, width- 33?/85 cm
  • Weight: 33.57 kg
  • Capacity: 238.14 kg
  • Paddlers: 1 / Single  person
  • Type: Sit on Top
  • Material: Processed Polyethylene
  • Made in: United States of America


  • Good for all water types – coastal, flat and slow-moving
  • Has high compatibility particularly with Pescador paddle and the likes
  • Comes with adjustable mesh and suspension seats
  • Flexible, easy to use and understand
  • Suitable for both beginners and professionals
  • Comes in a material that enhances its durability and assures its comfortability


  • A bit pricy

Final Verdict

Once you have aligned your purpose with your budget, then nothing should be stopping you from getting the Pescador Pilot 12 moel. We are sure it is one that will offer you all that is desired of a top-of-the-line pedal kayak. Fishing, distance traveling, and kayaking feel much better when you are on a pedal boat. To us, no other model beats this one in terms of design and functionality.

02 BKC PK11 10.6 ft (The Budget King)

BKC PK11 10.6 ft

If you are looking for a highly rated portable pedal kayak with all the right features, then you should go for the BKC PK11 manufactured by Brooklyn Kayak Company. Coming with a whole lot of features in a relatively small package, it is a must-have for fishermen and distance travelers who want to spend less.

Its amazing features and compact nature stands it out among its peers.

Good Seating Structure: One great feature of this boat is its seating structure. It comes with a roto-molded hull that is streamlined and has been made resistant to UV. This makes it easy for you to sit inside and be shielded from the sun ray over an extended period of time.

Also, these seats have been well placed so much so that it doesn’t interfere with entering or going out from the kayak.

Relatively Compact Structure: Designed to come handy and compact, this vessel is easily movable from one place to another. Not only does its compact design allows it to be moved effortlessly, but also makes it meander its way through water bodies easily. The easy movement capacity across water bodies makes it a more pleasurable kayak.

Highly Efficient Propeller Type: Though coming in a compact design, this kayak comes with a very efficient propeller type. This makes pedaling very easy for you as you don’t have to exert a lot of energy. We often get our feet wet when it’s hard to use the propeller. They have added a strap with the pedals for tackling that situations. That’s one smart move from the company.


  • Hull Weight: 60 lbs (empty)
  • Load Capacity: 420 lbs. (Max)
  • Seating: 1 person
  • Length: 10 ft. 6 inches
  • Hull Build Material: HDPE (High-density polyethylene)
  • Color: Red, Yellow
  • Brand: Brooklyn Kayak Company


  • Comes with a great sit-on design
  • Has an outstanding turning and tracking ability
  • Known by many to be a generous cargo
  • Comfortable seats and strong waterproof compartments


  • A bit hard to stand up without tilting the boat

Final Verdict

Budgeting is key to making a good purchase but shouldn’t limit the quality to be served with. So, if you want to keep in touch with a high performing cheap pedal kayak, then this is for you.

It could be one of the cheapest products for sale, but it impressed us with its price to performance ratio, and we highly recommend this for those with a small budget. But are ready to go on a kayaking adventure in exotic spots.

03 BKC PK14 14 ft (Top Dual Pedal Kayak)

BKC PK14 14 ft

Are you planning to buy a two-person tandem fishing kayak with a twin pedal drive? Then you should get the amazing BKC UG-PK14. With this boat, you will be able to do a lot as a fisherman and much more as a long-distance traveler. With amazing features and top-notch specifications, this pedal kayak makes it to the 3rd spot on our top 10 list.

A Reliable Friend Covering Long Distances: Being a pedal kayak with an option for paddling, it will help you cover longer distances than any of its peers. Not only will you be able to cover long distances, but you’ll also enjoy faster speed and great control.

Good Stability: Not just the speed, this model is also known for its second-to-none stability on the water. Offering just one paddler, you do not have to worry as it can be maneuvered around waterways without the fear of tipping or flipping.

You should choose a compatible paddle to gain a faster speed. To affirm its stability, it is designed with a watertight hatch and a bit large in size so as to be firm on the water body.

Offers a Reasonable Amount of Space: Space being a major factor to be considered when choosing a pedal kayak was taken into account by the manufacturers of this pedal kayak. It offers ample space to store fishing materials safely.


  • Weight : 99 lbs. (empty)
  • Load Capacity: 660 lbs. (Maximum)
  • Length: 14 ft.
  • Capacity: 2
  • Build Material: HDPE (High-density polyethylene)
  • Protection: UV


  • Has ample space for items and goods to be stored
  • Compatible with trolling motor
  • Comes with a comprehensive pedal kayak warranty
  • Affordable and efficient


  • Doesn’t come with paddles so you would need to get them separately
  • Quite heavy in size

Final Verdict

Nothing is more interesting than going for a more innovative design, especially when it has to do with kayaking. Being the first of its kind as a twin pedal drive, you can rest assured that it maintains its standards.

Make good use of the flexibility of this boat and enjoy the space, comfort, and stability it has to offer and find out what makes it one of the best pedal kayaks on the market.

04 BKC PK13 13 ft

BKC PK13 13 ft

This pedal drive foot kayak is amazingly stable, sturdy and packed with a list of outstanding features that you’ll definitely like if you are into this kind boats. Let’s talk about the highlights:

Far Traveling Abilities: The wide space of this boat makes it a fantastic travel companion as you can carry lots of stuff on it. As a foot kayak, it will relieve you of exhaustion during long-distance travel. With a rotational pedal, it gathers a lot of momentum that still keeps it going even when no energy is exerted to it.

This way you are able to relax after a long period of pedaling while still having the boat move at an appreciable speed.

Amazing Pedal Drive System: Only a few pedal kayaks available on the market today match the standard of this model. It comes with a pedal-driven propeller system that allows the watercraft to move better and faster with less stress required to keep it going.

Additionally, it also allows for a trolling motor to be attached to enhance its speed.

Good Also for Fishing: The speed, stability, storage space, and smooth momentum makes it an ideal choice for fishing. We expect that fishermen would enjoy fishing on this boat as they would be able to utilize every inch of this vessel.

Excellent Comfort and Stability: Equipped with a bow molded hulls, this pedal has all the balance it needs to assure the user the most stable kayaking experience. It comes with stable handles that make it easy for you to navigate the pedal kayak through water bodies as you move.


  • Weight: 80 lbs. (empty)
  • Load Capacity: 550 lbs. (Max)
  • Length: 13 Ft.
  • Capacity: 1
  • Build Material: HDPE (High-density polyethylene)
  • Protection: UV


  • Has premium seats included in the price on a purchase
  • Allows for other compartments like trolling motor to be added
  • Comes with ample storage space that is safe and secured altogether
  • Has an appreciable price to quality ratio


  • You have to purchase paddles for it separately
  • Lacks adequate watertight storage

Final Verdict

With all being said, you are left to make a choice on either going with one of the top foot kayaks or settle for another regular option. This one-of-a-kind foot pedal kayak is so affordable yet still very much reliable. To enjoy fishing or long distance traveling, we believe, this well-designed model is an ideal option.

05 Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10

Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10

This fishing pedal kayak is one of the lightest 10-foot pedal drives you will find on the market. Though being lightweight, it doesn’t lack in features and specifications. It is also known to be a high performing model that is widely desired by fishermen around the country.

Excellent and Rock-Solid Stability: Stability is considered everything to many who use a pedal kayak for fishing. This is because for an angler, the stability of the boat in the middle of the lake can make all the difference as angling requires sudden body movements, also drawing a big fish on board can cause a huge tilt. On this boat, you can do all that without any risk of instability.

Clutter-Free and Easily Accessible Cockpit: Among other things, this model also comes with a clutter-free cockpit that allows the captain to move the boat without creating sudden movements in and out of the kayak.

This makes the cockpit accessible whenever in need. Like the Titan Propel 12 model, this is a dreamboat for anglers because of its angling-friendly cockpit.

Excellent Stern Rail Mounts: The excellent stern rail mounts of this pedal kayak allows you to relax and sip a beverage or catch a glimpse of duck flights in the air or amazing water tides. It also allows for the rod holders to be put on and off easily.

Speedy Movement and High Maneuvering Abilities: The lightness of this fishing boat allows it to maneuver its way through water bodies smoothly. As we all know, the lighter the weight of a pedal kayak, the faster it is likely to move, and this is where this boat gets an advantage for being light. Logically, it’s one of the fastest boats on our list.


  • Weight: 62 lbs.
  • Length: 10 feet
  • Max weight capacity: 227 kg
  • Cockpit: Clutter-free
  • Drive unit’s depth capacity: 12-inch – 18-inch
  • Build material: Polyethylene (High Grade)


  • Has a very impressive maneuvering ability
  • It becomes stable to use after it has been mastered.
  • Comes with a lot of storage spaces which includes dry boxes
  • Very easy to use without having to exert any stress
  • You can pedal it with your feet bare


  • Uncomfortable seats, especially for someone with short legs

Final Verdict

If you are looking for a personal kayak that offers you both comfort and speed, then you should go for this lightweight fishing unit. With all of these amazing features, it comes at such an affordable price point that makes it hard to ignore.

From our end, we liked its sturdy build, stability, speed and versatile utility factors. It’s an excellent boat for the money.

06 Ocean Kayak Malibu Pedal Kayak

Ocean Kayak Malibu Pedal Kayak

The pedal power of the Malibu Pedal Kayak remains the most talked about feature of this kayak. Known to come handy, these pedals are easy to use and relatively comfortable. They do not require any stress and can be effected with your legs while your hands work freely.

This increases the level of productivity when it is used for whatever purpose you desire it for. However, apart from that, here are some more amazing features about this boat:

Highly Flexible Innovation: The design flexibility is what makes it easy to use by both beginners and professionals. It has extra space for carrying pets and other necessities. With 450 lbs. of weight capacity you can take a companion with you.

Adjustable and Comfortable Seat Options: This pedal kayak comes with a seating option that can accommodate another person comfortably. Designed in a way that the entry and exit from the boat is troublefree. What’s more, you can adjust the seats to make it more comfortable for whoever uses it.

Perfect Pairing Abilities: You’ll get a Solitude (Old Town) jacket with the package. This jacket smoothly integrates with the boat’s seat (ElementAir). It also houses a built-in AirComfort system for keeping you cool when you are exposed to the sun for a long time.


  • Weight capacity: 450 pounds
  • Length: 12-foot
  • Width: 34 inches
  • Build material: Single Layer Polyethylene
  • Pet support: Yes


  • Pedaling requires little or no effort at all
  • Well-structured bow and stem handles make it easy to carry it from one place to another
  • Car-top friendly
  • Has a low deck profile and good storage that aids better performance
  • A number of its features are adjustable making them more comfortable


  • Paddle is sold separately

Final Verdict

For a flexible, versatile and comfortable pedal kayak, Malibu is the most suitable one. It’s also a great choice for pets. There is no limitation on who can use and what it can be used for. If you have the budget for this awesome masterpiece, there should be no second thought. It is worth the purchase as long as you know how to adequately maintain it.

07 Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5

Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5

With the right specifications and features, this user-friendly yet affordable pedal kayak offers an impressive price to quality making it an ideal choice for starters.

Simple Design, Easy to Use: The uniqueness of this pedal kayak lies in its simplistic design language. Unlike many other boats of its kind, it is simple but still compact; not lacking any of the specifications needed for it to function effectively.

With this simplicity of design comes to ease of use that you can expect from top-quality tandem kayaks. Users are able to understand the various parts of this pedal kayak and how these parts can function effectively.

Allows for Hands-Free Propulsion: The ease of propulsion is one of the factors to be considered when getting a pedal kayak. With this model, you are able to enjoy hands-free propulsion. What this means is that you can freely and comfortably pedal the boat with your legs while you are using your hands for other activities.

For fishermen, this is essential as their hands can be used to carry out other fishing activities.

Adequate Structure to Keep It Firm and in Place: This pedal kayak comes with built-in drink holders and utility trays for convenience. It also comes with a mast step that keeps its legs firm. The wide beam has an impressive length to ensure the comfort of the user during pedaling.


  • Length: 10? 6?
  • Width: 34?
  • Weight: 65 lbs.
  • Paddlers: 1 person
  • Capacity: 325 lbs.
  • Material: Polyethylene


  • Its V-shaped hull gives it all the stability it needs
  • It comes with large storage compartments that are safe and secured
  • Has rod mount holders to help fishermen fish better
  • It is made up of high quality and reliable materials


  • A bit heavy in weight and not great for offshore

Final Verdict

If you seek to possess a fantastic onshore pedal kayak, then this should be the first to come to mind. With a good design, long-lasting build materials and high performance, we highly recommend this for fishermen.

08 Native Watercraft Slayer 13 Propel Kayak

Native Watercraft Slayer 13 Propel Kayak

This pedal kayak makes it here because it is the ultimate hands-free fishing machine. Widely used among fishermen who look to combine pleasure and profession together, this pedal kayak offers even more!

Improved Storage Capacity: Fishermen always carry lots of items– nets, hooks, fish-career, roads, baits and so on. All these materials need to be stored. In order to ensure easy storage of all these items, this model comes with an improved storage capacity. The storage is also well secured on both ends with an iron throttle.

Amazing Turning and Tracking: The relatively smaller structure of the boat gives it effective turning and tracking abilities. This makes it a good pedal kayak for beginners who would like to master kayaking with a kayak for beginners . On the other hand, this boat does not require any extra stress for smooth propulsion and navigation in moderately rough waters.

Good Price Value to Quality Ratio: No matter how buoyant you are as a person, it is frustrating when you have to spend a lot on a tool and find out it works far below what is expected of it. This is not the case with this model and our field-tests validate its price to be well justified by its performance.


  • Length: 13? 2?
  • Width: 33?
  • Material: Polyethylene
  • Full weight: 108 lbs.
  • Rudder: 1 (included)
  • Weight Capacity: 500 lbs
  • Seat: Adjustable
  • User capacity: 1 person


  • Highly stable
  • Has better and more improved tracking abilities than most models
  • Comes with a high-quality captain chair hands.
  • Cheap, Comfortable and highly durable


  • Servicing requires a special toolkit
  • A lot can be done to improve the rudder design

Final Verdict

With this boat, the pleasure and profession can be combined together. Giving you the comfort, stability, and efficiency needed while fishing, this cheap pedal kayak offers ample storage space that is ideal for anglers. In short, you can’t have enough of this pedal kayak which is why you should try it out for yourself.

09 Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 Ivory Dune

Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 Ivory Dune

The Hobie 2019 Mirage Revolution 11 is one of the latest models available on the market. It has made its way to the 9th spot in this top 10 list for all the good reasons.

Easy of Use, Storage, and Maintenance: Being upgraded, this 2019 model of the Hobie mirage is now a lot more easy to use. Many of the complex features of the former model have been simplified, so much so that beginners who are yet to master kayaking can choose this model. Apart from that, it offers nice storage options onboard despite having a compact design.

A Versatile Option in Terms of Compatibility: The compatibility is a very important factor to consider when getting this kind of boat. It works well with paddles, motor trolling and other attachments needed for functioning effectively.

Has Good Seating and Transport Options: The seating and portability of this model are popular among users. The well-spaced seats allow for easy entrance and exit. It also offers enough space for pedaling with ease. Being only 11 feet long, it can be moved around effortlessly on top of your car.


  • Length: 11 feet 6 inches
  • Width: 29 inches
  • Weight: 47 lbs.
  • Capacity: 136 kg
  • User capacity: 1 person
  • Build material: Polyethylene (Rotomolded)


  • Materials used for its external and internal constructions are highly durable materials
  • Its seating compartments are as excellent as its storage capacity
  • Comes with dry bags to help keep your items from getting soaked in water
  • Absolutely impressive trackers and turning abilities


  • More compact design will be very much desirable

Final Verdict

We tested Ivory Dune on different water bodies and it impressed us by its performance and build quality. We recommend this one for fishing and long-distance touring. Moreover, if you have a pet, it could be one of the best pedal kayaks for you.

10 Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 Kayak

Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 Kayak

The last but not the least model on our top 10 list is the Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 Caribbean Blue. It has many things in common with the former Ivory Dune Revolution 11 model we discussed above. Common among beginners and a few professionals it offers a number of amazing features.

Easy to Understand, Use and Maintain: Unlike other complicated models, this one requires a little knowledge of kayaking to drive it like a pro. This is why it is a much-preferred kayak among beginners than it is among professionals. Apart from that, it is also simple to maintain.

Good Tracking, Turning and Running Features: In terms of tracking and turning, we found this kayak to be as good as every other model out there, thanks to its ergonomic design. Its top-notch rudders help it navigate without water bodies without losing balance even at a higher speed.

Strong Material, Impressive Hull Size, and Shape: The material build-up of a pedal kayak determines its durability and the consistency of its performance. Made from the polyethylene material, this pedal kayak can last for as long as it is maintained.

The storage space, width, and length of the boat also make it suitable for fishing. In fact, it is mainly built for fishing in freshwater. Amateur anglers and fishing enthusiasts can make good use of this model.


  • Length: 11? 6?
  • Width: 29?
  • Weight: 81 pounds
  • Number of Paddlers: 1
  • Capacity: 275 pounds
  • Seating: Adjustable Vantage CT
  • Rudder: Included
  • Material: Polyethylene (Rotomolded)


  • Its storage spaces have dry bags to prevent items stored from getting wet.
  • Easy to use, maintain and can be paddled with your barefoot
  • Comes with a comprehensive 2-year warranty plan per pedal kayak


  • A lot can be done to improve the storage compartments

Final Verdict

With not so many features to offer, this pedal kayak can still help you as a beginner to master the art of kayaking. You can explore the features both as a fisherman and as a long-distance traveler. We highly recommend this one if you are new in the world of kayak fishing.

Best Pedal Kayaks: A Comprehensive Buying Guide

Best Pedal Kayaks: Buying Guide

Everyone has a different reason for buying a kayak. So, knowing the purpose is as much important as having a basic knowledge of this product. Once the purpose is known, the next step is to know the basics. Here, we will be discussing some points to consider when buying these boats.

01. Stability

While pedal kayaks generally are known to be more stable than other types, the stability of one model differs from that of another. Much like the fishing float tubes, a fishing kayak should be stable allowing you to perform certain actions without wiggling the boat. You should be able to pedal like a shark– silent, stable, smooth and fast.

02. Speed

The speed is also a factor to consider. This type of boat should offer you more speed than the ones with foot pedals. This is where the propulsion also comes to play. Remember that models with rotational pedals are more likely to offer better speed than those with push pedals.

03. Capacity

The capacity of a boat refers to its size and storage. If you need a kayak for fishing, then it is very important that you go for one that has a large storage capacity. That way more fishing materials can be stored and installed without hampering the pedaling.

04. Material & Durability

The material and durability are important factors here. Make sure to go for a model that is made of quality materials. A wide range of materials are used for making these types of boats, for example, wood, composite glass, fiberglass, and thermoformed polyethylene. For the inflatable models, PVC, Hypalon, and Nylon are used in general.

A pedal kayak made of quality materials is bound to last longer than one made from less quality materials. The durability should also be taken into consideration for saving money and time of maintenance.

05. Tracking & Turning

While many experts are of the view that the paddle kayaks have better tracking and turning abilities than the pedal counterparts, this might not be so. Design improvements have been consistently improving tracking and turning of these boats.

Modern steering systems can make turning super easy. Make sure you go for models that are a bit wider with better hull sizes for smooth turning and tracking experience.

06. Hull Size & Shape

Although the pedal kayaks come in various sizes and shapes, they all serve the same purpose. So, go for a shape you like most and a size that matches your capacity. Don’t go for large-sized pedal kayaks that you won’t feel comfortable to handle.

Choose one that fits the purpose and the roof rack of your car. For better control, go for inflatable models, they are highly portable and will offer a lot more fun.

07. Seating & Transport

In terms of seating position and portability, you are going to find lots of different models. Most pedal kayaks have a sit-on-top design. There’s hardly any sit-in model if any. If you have a fishing purpose, get the one that offers more space with a smaller yet comfortable seating position. For pleasure boating, choose one with wider and spacious seats.

Transportation is a big concern for kayak owners. Most people choose convenient car mounts for carrying the hull. For those who use inflatable models, the car’s back deck is enough to store the entire thing. Some inflatable models can be folded and carried around like a backpack.

08. Launching & Beaching

As with other boats, the launching and beaching for a pedal model is not complicated at all. However, you can make use of a secondary propeller if your pedal kayak has a poor launching and beaching ability.

09. Accessory Mounts

Pedal kayaks usually have necessary mounts for housing loads of accessory. Fishing with a 2-person boat with pedals offers you enough space and facilities onboard to keep other accessories as they are bigger than the solo models. It’s a convenience that few other boats in this category offer.

10. Price

The price is a factor to be considered when buying pedal kayaks. Make sure you have a budget prepared beforehand and check for the price to quality ratio to be sure you are getting the quality at the right price.

If you want quality, there is no super cheap option that would offer you a boat under 1000 bucks. But, we found that there are good models coming under 3000 and even 2000 bucks.

Why Buy a Pedal Kayak

Roaming in the waters is always therapeutic. It relieves us from stress and all the psychological junks we pick up every day from the workplace or social gatherings. Kayaking is, therefore, prescribed by physicians and psychologists for a good number of reasons. But why would you go for a pedal kayak when the market is littered with paddle models? Let’s find the answer.

With a relatively new design and added features, pedal kayaks are known to be better propellers. Here, you’ll be using your legs instead of hands and that makes all the difference. Many call them leg or foot-paddle boats for that reason. It’s a whole new modern boating experience that will reduce fatigue to a great extent.  There are advantages and disadvantages of such boats. Let’s begin with the advantages.

Pedaling is more comfortable than paddling. When you are doing the former, you are making use of your largest muscle group. This helps your arms and shoulders from getting stressed up. So, it creates opportunities for people with weak muscle mass to regain control over their extended kayaking sessions.

The versatility of the pedal kayak is yet still another reason why you should buy it. Anglers and everyone alike are able to enjoy the improved propulsion and other user-friendly features. Generally, the length and storage capacity of these boats makes it good for fishing as baits, hooks, tackles, and other fishing materials can be stored easily.

Also, they allow you to have your hands available for many fishing activities while it is being paddled with your legs. As your legs gradually pedal the vessel, you can make use of your hands to cast in your net into the water and watch the fishes sink in. In doing this, you don’t have to worry about the stability of the kayak. You also don’t need a paddle to have you secured or avoid being dropped in the water.

In terms of size, pedal kayaks still stand out from other models in that they are a bit wider and longer. The width makes them more stable to use as they stand firm without tilting to one side that is common with other non-pedal models. You can use a pedal kayak sizing guide before purchasing one.

The seating structure of the pedal kayaks is also one good reason why you should buy one. They come with very comfortable seats that offer adjustments and upgrades.

Propulsion Types of Pedal kayak

The propulsion systems of these watercraft vary as much as their types and forms. This difference is based on the operation. However, generally speaking, there are two major types of propulsion systems that we will be exploring here.

01. Push Pedals

Pedal kayaks that have the push pedal propulsion are moved forward or backward by different body movements. To push such a boat, you will need to push your feet forward or backward causing the hull of the boat to either move forward or backward.

What this means is that the more you push the boat using the drive kit, the more it moves.  Movement of the kayak stops as soon as you stop pushing forward.

This is what brings us to the disadvantage of this propulsion which is that it requires a whole lot of momentum and energy to be exerted for it to move and keep moving. Usually, these boats have a double pedal design for using both legs.

02. Rotational Pedals

Kayaks with rotational pedals or rotating propellers (also known as underwater “flippers”), on the other hand, move in a walking motion. They have rotational paddles that are used to gather momentum around the boat as it is being continually pushed forward in a cycling motion with the legs.

This way the boat gathers enough momentum to keep it moving even after you stop pedaling it.

So, when you stop pedaling, the kayak still moves at a speed that gradually drops and after a certain period of time, it comes to a halt. While this propulsion enhances speed, it requires a whole lot of space for efficiency.

Care & Maintenance

This review will not be complete if nothing is said about maintaining pedal kayaks. Maintenance is not only the key to keep the boat in the best working condition, but it also saves a lot of money by keeping it fit for over a long period of time.

There are a number of ways to maintain these pedal boats, but let us run through some of the basics of maintaining a pedal kayak.

  • Clean the kayak after every use: As soon as you are done making use of the kayak, make sure you have it cleaned up. Take away every dirt from it and ensure that it is in the right condition for the next time.
  • Check if all attachments are in place: After every use, make sure you check the boat if all attachments are secured in their place. Also, make sure there are no leakages or breakage, and if you find any, you should fix it immediately. You might need to get some aftermarket fixes in that case. You may also use homemade or DIY repair kits to fix the damage.
  • Avoid sharp objects from coming in contact with the boat: Make sure that the boat is stored in a secure place after every use. Keep it from coming in contact with any sharp object that may scratch or dent it.

Tips on Using Best Pedal Kayaks

We have come to understand that the tips and tricks of usage of one user place him in a superior position from another. In order to get this advantage over others, here are a few tips and tricks that will help you perform like a pro:

  • Avoid using a pedal kayak at night: Except for having adequate lighting facilities, you should avoid taking your boat out at night. Even if you do, use a kayak GPS so that you don’t get lost by accident.
  • Make sure to stick with the manufacturer’s guide: Many users fail to understand that not all boats in this category are the same as they are built by different manufacturers. Paying attention to the manufacturer’s guide would give you the right information about your boat and how to maintain it properly.
  • Don’t neglect the safety precautions: Be it a beginner or professional model, safety precautions are important for you when using a pedal kayak. Make sure to keep yourself safe from fatal accidents by complying with all safety precautions. Always wear a quality sun protective hat when you are out on the water on a hot day.

What Else Do You Need?

It is fun and advantageous to own a pedal-propelled kayak as you get to use your legs for pushing your vessel forward while the hands remain free for other activities. These boats make fishing much easier, more comfortable and also productive.

With all of the knowledge of buying these watercraft and how to use and maintain one, you might ask if there is anything else you need when starting your journey on a boat like this.

Yes, a life jacket and some dry bags can be some additional requirements to ensure your kayaking experience is more pleasurable. While the dry bag offers you additional storage options, the life jacket is a lifesaver.

Remember you are working on water and anything can happen when you are there. So, never forget a life jacket for yourself and anybody onboard.


Q.1: Which type is faster? Pedal or paddle kayaks?

Ans. Pedal kayaks are almost twice as fast as paddle kayaks. The rotational pedals and push pedals produce a significantly higher force that traditional paddles can’t do.

Q. 2: How far can I go in a pedal kayak?

Ans. You may go up to around 8 mph on a pedal kayak. The top speed depends on the kayak size, type, and your expertise as a kayaker. Keep in mind that composite models go faster than plastic types.

Q. 3: Can I put a pedal drive on any kayak?

Ans. Bolt-on systems allow you to put pedals on any kayak boat. The cable attached to the propellers runs through the kayak.

Q. 4: Can I use pedal kayaks in the ocean?

Ans. Pedal kayaking makes your time in the ocean much more enjoyable. They offer more speed and better control in the ocean. You also get higher endurance to extend the fun time.

Q. 5: How shallow can pedal kayaks go?

Ans. If you have a sawed-off rudder, you can navigate through around 8-inch water with the rudder down. You will comfortably pedal through 8-inch water after you master shallow peddling.

Final Words

At the Kayak Fisherly, we worked hard to come up with the best pedal kayaks of the market. It took weeks of hands-on testings and data analysis. Our goal was to provide you with authentic information regarding these modern watercraft which have broken traditional boat propelling norms.

Our elaborate product comparisons, feature-analysis, and first-hand user-experience would guide you in the right direction.

Whatever models you are buying, make sure you take necessary safety measures before you hop on to one. Get to know the weather and the water body before you launch your boat. Apart from that, take note of our tips on the care and maintenance of these boats to get the most out of them.

Furthermore, you can find out more about the topic by going through the pedal kayaks reviews and ratings of customers who have used any model from our list. Also, you can leave a review after you might have purchased and used one.

About the author

Jessica Herron

Hi! This is Jessica. I can be your virtual outdoor buddy, lol! My friends call me a devotee of adventure. I believe, as any outdoor enthusiast does, adventures are all about the thrill. My love consists of a mix of fishing and camping in the wild, if you ask (what thrills you most?). So, I could be of help (through my articles on this website) to any adventure seeker as long as backpacking, survival, camping, hiking, and fishing are concerned. Are you planning to take a trip to the wild next weekend? Maybe, you already are in the middle of a journey. No matter where you are, my words are on the air!

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