Tag Archive: hybrid fishing kayak

How Does Fishing Kayak Design Address Pain?

It’s a painful question for many kayak anglers!
Sit-in, SOT and hybrid fishing kayaks are sometimes designed with an intention to alleviate the pain felt by anglers who use them, especially back pain, or at least this is what their manufacturers proclaim.
In reality, there’s very little that can be done to take care of this critical problem, and nothing to solve it at its root, which is the way kayaks are in the first place, and the way we are: People who no longer sit on the floor with our legs stretched in front of us, as we used to sit long ago, before chairs, stools, and other elevated seats were introduced to our life.
We are members of modern societies, and as such, we sit on elevated seats, and we’ve lost the ability to sit comfortably with our legs stretched in front of us, which is what traditional kayaks as well as hybrid fishing kayaks force us to do.
More foam in the seat’s backrest doesn’t solve anything, really, and elevating the seat doesn’t solve any problem either, because those kayaks aren’t stable enough to sustain a decrease in their users’ stability as a result of their center of gravity going up. The result is that people who sit on higher seats attached to those mon-hull fishing kayaks (sit-in, SOT and hybrid) feel less stable, and increase the pressure of their legs on the footrests and backrest between which they are trapped. The result: more back pain.

Here’s a quote from an article about kayaking back pain:
“Pain is usually initiated by stimulation of the peripheral nervous system, that is the nerves in various parts of our body. These nerves are connected through the spinal nerve to our brain, where we become aware of the pain.

The Nerves Involved In Kayak Back Pain, Leg Pain, Etc.

The sciatic nerve is a large nerve fiber that begins in the lower back and runs through the buttock and down the lower limb. It is the longest and widest single nerve in the human body. The sciatic nerve supplies nearly the whole of the skin of the leg, the muscles of the back of the thigh, and those of the leg and foot. It is derived from spinal nerves L4 (in Lumbar vertebra # 4) through S3 (in Sacral vertebra #3) in the lower part of our spine.

Meaning of Back Pain When You’re Kayaking, or Kayak Fishing

Any unpleasant sensation you feel in your body while kayaking or fishing from your kayak, is a sign that something is wrong, so you need to pay attention to it, and do something about it:
Your legs getting numb means you should change positions, stretch, get up, and get things in order.
Pain in your legs, or your lower back means something is seriously wrong, and you’re either risking physical damage, or actually causing it just by being seated in the L position, whether you’re paddling, resting, or fishing…”

Interestingly, the pain created in your back gets exacerbated the more your legs push on the footrests. This unwanted process is increased when you’re seated in a pedal driven fishing kayak, and your legs constantly and energetically push the pedals, for a long time. Since your legs are required to perform this task from the center of the deck, and your feet lose the little stabilizing effect they have when the rest in the footrests located on the sides, the instability you feel increases even more, and so is the pressure…

How Much Storage Is A Good Fishing Kayak Required To Provide?

Our answer to this question is “as much as possible – there’s no such thing as too much storage in a fishing kayak”. We believe that most experienced kayak anglers would adhere to this opinion, although it seems like some people who are affiliated with certain fishing kayak brands think there’s such a thing as “too much storage in a fishing kayak”  🙂

When a fishing kayak is concerned, the three fundamental questions pertaining to storage are:

  1. How much storage space does the kayak provide?
  2. How well does this storage space protect the gear stored in it?
  3. How easy and convenient it is for the kayak angler to reach the stored gear?

Even the biggest and most expensive fishing kayaks don’t offer a sufficient amount of storage space for a serious, long fishing trip. This includes SOT fishing kayaks, and Hybrid fishing kayaks that are so big, heavy and clumsy that paddling or pedaling them is hard, and so is car topping them. This is why they’re called ‘barge yaks’, and they require that you outfit them with a crate.

The only fishing kayak that provides as much storage space as you’d need for a fishing trip of any length is the W500 (and the 502, of course). The storage space in this kayak is protected from the elements, and you can always access it from inside the cockpit – even when you’re out on the water.  This can’t be said about the typical storage solution that other fishing kayaks feature, which is called hatches.

Read more about storage in fishing kayaks >

 

Is The Common Fishing Kayak An Extreme Design?

Interestingly, most people, including most of those who fish, which count in the tens of millions in the United States alone, perceive kayak fishing to be an extreme form of fishing, and therefore the fishing kayak to be an extreme watercraft.
Of course, this is relative to fishing from shore, or from traditional, bigger boats such as canoes, dinghies and skiffs, and other motorized boats that are popular for fishing, although nearly all of them are more expensive than fishing kayaks, when both purchase price and cost of maintenance are concerned.
In fact, the ratio of kayak anglers to all anglers is about 1:1,000 in the U.S., a figure that tells a lot.

So the question asked in this blog post’s title is not misplaced, and it should be asked more frequently, and discussed openly and thoroughly, as this “Kayak Fishing As An Extreme Sport” article does.
Excerpt from this article:
…”Kayak fishing promised a cheaper, hassle free, low maintenance, lightweight, car top form of fishing craft, and a direct, sporty experience. However, today, out of tens of millions of Americans who fish from boats, merely one in every thousand fishes from a kayak, and this is after a decade of promises that ‘kayak fishing is the fastest growing outdoors sport’, etc. The bulk of US anglers have followed neither the kayak fishing pioneers nor the fishing kayak manufacturers’ hype, and since growth in kayak fishing participation is no longer as fast as it had been several years ago, it is safe to say that the US kayak fishing market has matured. This is partly a result of decreasing enthusiasm from new participants, as well as a high dropout rate that has been typical to this sport since its early beginnings.
Yes, but…

But kayak fishing feels extremely uncomfortable only if you’re fishing from the old fashion, sit-on-top (SOT) kayaks and sit-in kayaks. In contrast, when you fish from a W kayak, you experience a level of comfort that’s equivalent to that of fishing from a regular size boat, and some W fans would argue that you feel even better…”

The Hybrid Fishing Kayak

Micronautical is a website dedicated to fishing kayak design, and as such, it covers all aspects of this field.
We intend to publish an article about Hybrid fishing kayaks, but in the meantime we recommend reading the following excerpt:

The Hybrid Fishing Kayak – Facts, Hype and Plain Nonsense

The term ‘Hybrid Kayak’ is an abbreviation of ‘Hybrid Canoe-Kayak’. It’s a type of small, typically human powered watercraft that takes from the kayak in the sense that its passengers sit in it with their legs stretched forward, and use dual blade (i.e. ‘kayak’) paddles for propulsion.
The hybrid’s canoe genes are harder to track in most cases, but all hybrid kayaks are very wide, and designed to provide more stability than narrower, traditional kayaks offer. It’s likely to assume that those who design and manufacture hybrid kayaks view the canoe as a watercraft that’s stabler than common kayaks are, and the reference to canoes is therefore an implicit reference to stability…  Read more about hybrid fishing kayaks >>