Last Updated on August 5, 2021 by Debra
At first glance, you will hardly find differences between different kayak paddles. A shaft and a blade at both ends are common in every kayak paddle.
A paddle is significantly essential for a kayak as an engine is to a vehicle. The best lightweight kayak paddle can improve the efficiency of your stroke so that you can go straighter and faster using less energy. On the other hand, a wrong paddle can turn a fun day into a boring one.
Making a buying decision is challenging since the range of options is extensive. To help, we crafted this guideline and reviewed the 7 best value kayak paddles for you.
Why Do You Need the Best Lightweight Kayak Paddle?
Whether you are a professional kayaker or beginner, having the best gears for your kayaking session is a must. A well-constructed lightweight kayak paddle will help you to make your experience on the water memorable. Moreover, handling a lightweight kayak paddle is less tiring.
Many of us are unaware that kayaking is a great exercise. It helps to relieve pain from your back muscle and supports the biceps to build up. With an inferior kayak paddle, you will experience back pain, even if you are kayaking in the calmest water. That is why you must need a lightweight kayak paddle for a comfortable kayaking trip.
The best marine kayak paddle offers the below benefits.
- Paddling becomes easier
- Promotes biceps build-up
- Reduces back pain
- A lightweight paddle can maneuver with superior ease
- Controlling and maneuverability gets comfy
Summary of the Best Lightweight Kayak Paddle
At a glance, through this section, you can learn the key features of the enlisted lightweight kayak paddles of this guideline. Read carefully to make a precise buying decision.
Best Overall: Poseidon Angler Fishing Lightweight Kayak Paddle
98” long kayak paddles, an ideal kayaking gear for wider kayaks. It comes with a 0° – 65° angle adjustment feature for different speeds.
Editor’s Choice: Best Marine Kayak Paddle
It is a featherlight kayaking paddle that lets you glide through the water effortlessly
Customer’s Pick: Poseidon Paddle 89” Adjustable Kayaks Paddles
2-piece of aluminum constructed and impact-resistant kayak paddles, perfect for your trips on the water.
Best for the Construction: Best Marine Kayak Fishing Paddles
The blades are made of durable ABS material, and the shaft is constructed using carbon fiber, making it a stable kayak paddle.
Best for the Adults: Viajero 2021 Kayak Paddles for Adults
Feather-like curvilinear fiberglass paddles can reduce the pressure caused by the water flow and reduce fatigue when kayaking for long sessions.
Best Budget-friendly Kayak Paddle: Pelican Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87”
This lightweight kayak paddles feature a Polypropylene blade, anodized aluminum shaft, drip rings, 0 or 65˚angle adjustment, and are available in 3 different colors at an affordable price range.
Best for Comfortable Gripping: YOOHO Kayak Paddles with Non-Slip Hand Grips
The YOOHO Kayak Paddles have gasket sheathing, providing a good non-slip grip and prevent blistering.
6 Best Lightweight Kayak Paddle Reviewed
In this section, you will find more details of our selected kayak paddles. Also, you will understand why we choose these kayak paddles over other models. However, don’t assume that they don’t have any drawbacks. In fact, the benefits outweigh any drawbacks in the paddle.
1# Best Overall: Poseidon Angler Fishing Lightweight Kayak Paddle
A lightweight kayak lets you spend more quality time on the water with your beloved ones. The Poseidon Angler Fishing Lightweight Kayak Paddle is promised to let you do so. This 98” long paddle is an ideal choice for a wider kayak, and the blade is made of Impact resistant fiberglass reinforced polypropylene, confirming durability.
Additionally, the cutouts near the back of the paddle heads allow water to flow off instead of going down the shaft. The shaft has markings to measure fish. The paddle shaft is very sturdy and feels really good to grip. More importantly, the grip along the paddle has a nice rubber feel, and it doesn’t slip at all when wet.
Moreover, the blades of the paddles are much more inexpensive compared to carbon fiber blades. As a result, it becomes an affordable item that doesn’t compromise on quality. It comes with an impact-resistant feature that allows you to kayak flexibly through rocky waters. Besides, the drip guards are pretty basic but seem to function well.
Also, the paddle is adjustable at 0° to 65° feather angle. It’s strong enough to push off from a bank without any worry and light enough that it easily winded going a long distance. Overall, it is a great kayak for recreational kayakers.
- Built-in hook retrieval system
- Rugged and durable aluminum construction
- Guides on the right spot for convenient grip
- It features angle adjustment for maximizing the outcome
- Affordable price range
- A little bit heavy in its class
2# Editor’s Choice: Best Marine Kayak Paddle
The best marine kayak paddle is exceptional than its competitor because it is full of exclusive features like lightweight, durable, solid, and affordable. It has reinforced fiberglass-constructed blades and a carbon fiber shaft that ensures the durability of the paddle. Moreover, the paddle weighs only 33.5oz., allowing you to glide through the water quite comfortably.
Furthermore, the paddles will float on the water. They each came with a leash as pictured. The size – these were about 1.5 inches longer than my 230cm field and stream paddle. Its blades are substantial, providing plenty of power on the water. The paddle comes with a nice finish, is very smooth, and is easy on the hands.
The lightweight feature makes the paddling much easier over a long haul. 92” length is pretty perfect for most kayakers. You will love to know that, for convenient travel and storage, they separate into 2 pieces. In addition, water can’t run down the shaft due to the included 2 drip rings. The paddles also have a 5ft. leash that allows you to secure them to your kayak.
These paddles are impressively well-balanced. Moreover, in each stroke, they encourage a robust, smooth, and natural cadence. It is a kayak paddle that lets you fall in low with kayaking regardless of the condition.
- This featherlight paddle lets you glide effortlessly
- A lightweight carbon fiber paddle is easier on shoulders for long kayaking trips
- Easy to carry and store because it can easily be collapsed
- Precisely balance that improves its performance
- 5ft. leash for securing the paddles to your kayak
- The length is a bit short
3# Customer’s Pick: Poseidon Paddle 89” Adjustable Kayaks Paddles
The first thing that will impress you with this Poseidon Paddle 89” Adjustable Kayaks Paddles ” design and construction. Aluminum construction makes it so sturdy and rugged that you will get many years of service. Also, impact-resistant blades are made of fiberglass-reinforced polypropylene for excellent longevity. Additionally, the shape of the paddles allows you to propel through the water more efficiently.
There is a nice design indent on the paddles to stop water from dripping onto you if you are paddling hard, and it comes with drip rings, which help a lot. The shaft itself is oval to give your hands a good grip, and it is coated with a textured material for a comfortable grip. Moreover, the blades are stiff and perfect for a low-angle paddler.
We will never feel fatigued in your shoulder when kayaking for a long time of its lightweight construction. Handle design is comfortable once you get used to it. The paddle is on the narrow side, which, compared to a broader paddle, confirms a little more precision to keep your kayak moving straight. Also, the shape makes rowing easy.
It comes with 0° – 65° angle adjustment with an enforced push-button connection for your convenience. Overall, this paddle is well-built, and its performance will satisfy you the most. It comes at an affordable price range, and the size is pretty perfect: 89”, not too long nor too short, suitable for sessions on the water.
- 89” kayak paddle, ideal for trips on the water
- Durable enough for its aluminum construction
- Oval shaped shaft offers good grip
- Enforced push-button connection for your convenience
- Lightweight and easy to use
- The handles can get overheated when exposed to direct sun
4# Best for the Construction: Best Marine Kayak Fishing Paddles
Best Marine and Outdoor Store is a top-rated manufacturer in the kayaking industry. The Best Marine Kayak Fishing Paddles are a great example of strength and durability. This premium-quality item comes at a wallet-friendly budget. It tracks straight and glides through the water easily. Since it is a lightweight kayak, handling it becomes easy on the water.
The structural reinforcement in the blade provides flexibility at the point where the highest force is applied. Moreover, the ergonomically designed grip supports balance and maintains stability. The great thing is, you will rarely find a premium-quality kayak paddle at a budget-friendly price. It is an ideal kayak paddle for all types of water.
Moreover, you don’t need to be worried enough thinking about its storage and transportation. It can easily be collapsed into 2 parts which ensures easy and convenient storage of the paddle. It’s 98” long and designed for wide fishing style kayaks, so it should work for a canoe as well. It also came with a leash that is easy to install.
Besides, the paddle has 3 holes, so you can have both blades on the same plane or turned 90 degrees forward or back for right or left-handed people in traditional kayak rotating paddle style. All in all, it is an excellent and relatively lightweight paddle.
- Very nice paddle for this price point
- It offers an awesome feel and lots of power
- Great investment for any kayakers
- The angler hook works well
- It includes a leash that is comfortable to install
- Customizations is not possible
5# Best for the Adults: Viajero 2021 Kayak Paddles for Adults
The Viajero 2021 Kayak Paddles are perfect for beginners and experienced kayakers. Because of their lightweight, well-designed water direction teeth and 3 locking position, either newbies or veterans can control them easily. What’s more? Compared with another usual kayak paddle, Viajero kayak paddles are lighter and easier to grow.
The total length of this kayak paddle is 90”, long enough compared to other paddles and ideal for most kayakers. Don’ worry thinking that carrying and transporting this long kayak will be troublesome. The good news is, by pressing the built-in button, you can disassemble it into 2 parts. This kayak paddle comes with a double serrated teeth edge design that directs the water current without wetting you.
Another worth-mentioning feature of this kayak paddle is, it can be locked between 3 different positions from 0° – 90°. This way, you can row the kayak at a different speed. Additionally, a hollow aluminum shaft tube design keeps the paddle float on the water for easy pickup. On both ends of the paddle, you will find PVC grabs, keeping your hands away from cold and hot feelings and preventing blistering.
This kayak paddle is a beast & cuts through the water so smoothly. The versatile use, such as kayaking, paddling, rafting, etc., makes this product even more desirable. The paddle is very nice for the price, and I would highly recommend this paddle for anyone.
- 2-piece detachable design for convenient storage and transportation
- Decent enough length of 90”, making it suitable for all kayakers
- 0° – 90° lockable position at left and right direction for achieving different speed
- Ideal for wider kayaks up to 34”
- Hollow aluminum shaft tube design allowing the paddle to float on the water
- No prominent cons are available
6# Best Budget-friendly Kayak Paddle: Pelican Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87”
Kayak paddles need to be sturdy, durable, and reliable regardless of the condition. The Pelican Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87” is a reliable performer that delivers exceptional performance in clumsy hands and rough conditions. The Polypropylene blade and 2 pieces anodized aluminum shaft offer a stable paddle stroke. More importantly, the blades don’t flex in harsh weather.
Secure grip is confirmed, especially when your hands are wet. The polypropylene blades are the most durable ones on the market we tested. You can transport the kayak paddles on the back of your vehicle since the paddles can be disassembled into 2-pieces by pressing the integrated small button switch. It is a great feature not only for storage but also for setting the paddles up for your individual preference.
With 87” size, this kayak paddle is an ideal one for kayakers of 4’8” – 5’11” and kayaks of 23″-28″ wide. Since it is made of the most rigid materials, it performs better compared to other paddles. More importantly, being lightweight kayak paddles, you can spend more time on the water without having trouble.
Overall, it provides great performance at a reasonable price. It is lightweight that confirms outstanding maneuverability and control when kayaking. If you are looking for a long-lasting and reliable kayak paddle, these Pelican Kayak Paddles would be the best choice.
- Drip rings keep the user’s hand dry when kayaking
- Comfortable grip for extended period kayaking
- Stability and control is confirmed with 0° or 65˚angle adjustment
- Ideal for recreational kayakers
- Impact-resistant blade
- It just doesn’t seem sturdy/strong enough to fight the water
What Factors to Consider Before Buying the Best Lightweight Kayak Paddle
A kayak paddle is a crucial piece of paddling gear. Many factors are there that you need to keep in mind when buying the best sea kayak paddle.
A kayak paddle length depends on the user’s height and width of the kayak. The thumb rule is, the wider the kayak, the longer oar you require.
Now you might be wondering how to pick the right kayak paddle length? Well, measure your height and add 8” – 12” with it to get the required kayak paddle length for your kayak.
The right paddle size will let you navigate the kayak efficiently and comfortably. If you choose a long kayak paddle than the requirement, you may fall off the kayak and get injured. While if the kayak paddle is shorter, controlling the kayak will be challenging.
So, before buying a kayak paddle, measure it according to your height and kayak width.
Different materials are used for manufacturing kayak paddles. Based on the material, the performance, durability, weight, and price are determined.
The 3 most common kayak paddle materials are carbon, fiberglass, and plastic.
Choose a carbon-made kayak paddle if power transfer is the key. Carbon is the stiffest, lightest, and the most expensive one among the 3 material types. At the same time, they offer the best performance.
However, carbon kayak paddles have a few drawbacks. If the kayak paddle gets impact by rocks too frequently, it can break easily.
Fiberglass kayak paddles are durable, affordable, and lightweight. They slice through the water more effectively than their counterparts. As a result, they are very much capable of performing linked strokes.
The drawback of fiberglass is, it can chip and wear down slowly. But they won’t get cracked or damaged. This means, in terms of longevity, they are better than carbon kayak paddles.
Plastic kayak paddles are rugged, robust, cheapest, and the best performer than carbon and fiberglass paddles. Thus, you can play around sharp coastlines and rocks without hesitation with plastic kayak paddles. They are an ideal choice for recreational or beginner kayakers for their affordable price range.
Flex is the biggest downside of plastic kayak paddles. When extra effort matters, a flexible plastic kayak paddle doesn’t offer the best result. That is why professional and experienced paddlers don’t prefer it.
The shaft of kayak paddles is also made of different materials.
Most kayak paddles shafts are made of aluminum. It is a robust and lightweight material. Here, carbon and fiberglass also offer a substantial edge.
Kayak paddles shafts can be either kinked or straight. A kinked shaft is often known as a crooked shaft also.
A kinked and crooked shaft is designed in such a way so that the paddler adjusts the grip according to their comfort for reducing stress in hand. In most cases, it is a preferable thing. On the other hand, many kayakers feel comfortable with a straight shaft.
Before investing in a kayak paddle, ask yourself a few questions.
How often will you go kayaking?
How much do you use your kayak?
Depending on the answer to the above question, you should set a budget for the kayak paddle. A budget-friendly kayak paddle will cost you between $40 – $90. In comparison, an expensive kayak paddle’s price range is $150 – $300.
The price range varies because of the material and design used to construct a kayak paddle.
However, if you are not going for a kayak session too often, it would be best to invest in an affordable one.
Kayak Paddles Caring and Maintenance
A little love is necessary in order to get the best performance from your kayak paddle. Even the premium quality kayak paddle will show poor performance if you don’t take care of it.
Follow the below points to learn about how to take care of kayak paddles.
- Dismantle the paddle halves.
- Use fresh and clean water to rinse each part. Don’t forget to rinse the ferrule too.
- Inspect the shaft’s internal components. The components should be free of all debris and water.
- When the kayak paddles are not in use, separate the 2 parts, store them in a dry and indoor place safely.
- If you own a plastic blade, use a mixture of mild detergent and water to wash it.
Frequently Asked Question
What happens when you use too long or too short a kayak paddle for kayaking?
When kayaking with a too long or too short kayak paddle, building up speed will be harder. Also, you will be unable to keep the kayak on track. Simultaneously, since the length is wrong, your hands will tend to move along the shaft, and thus, the development of blistering will happen in your hand.
Do all kayak paddles float?
The truth is, most kayak paddles will float. However, a kayak paddle’s buoyancy relies on the used materials and construction.
What is the best lightweight paddle for kayaking?
Consider buying a versatile, maneuverable, durable, and lightweight paddle for kayaking. Find a list of the best lightweight paddle for kayaking from below.
1# Poseidon Angler Fishing Lightweight Kayak Paddle
2# Best Marine Kayak Paddle
3# Poseidon Paddle 89” Adjustable Kayaks Paddles
4# Best Marine Kayak Fishing Paddles
5# Viajero 2021 Kayak Paddles for Adults
6# Pelican Aluminum Kayak Paddles 87”
All the kayak paddles mentioned above are the best in their class and offer impressive performance to make your kayaking session memorable.
The best lightweight kayak paddle significantly improves your kayaking experience. It is mandatory to keep all the considerations in mind when choosing a kayak paddle. To get a memorable kayaking session, you can’t deny the importance of having a reliable kayak paddle.
Hopefully, this guideline will help you to pick the right kayak paddle according to your kayak width. With the right product, be sure you will have an adventurous time on the water.