Paddling as a family is great fun. Using a tandem sit on top is a great way to get little ones on the water and confident on a boat. However if you really want your child to become self sufficient in a boat then it is important they have a craft that is a suitable size for them. Plenty of manufacturers offer smaller sit on tops for small adults and kids, but none have provided a genuine, child specific sit on top… until now!

The Ocean River Weeniwave is the ideal kayak for getting youngsters started in their own boat. It is so much smaller (and cheaper) than regular sit on tops and allows the child to actually paddle effectively and efficiently in the kayak.

The main problem with children paddling normal sit on tops is the width of the boat. The child bashes the paddles on the edge, hits fingers and can’t get the paddle in the water properly. At just 58cm wide the Weeniwave is a whole 11cm (16%) narrower than the Ocean Kayak Hula (our next narrowest boat).

Also length is a problem for children. Longer boats are faster and easier to keep in a straight line, but only if you are strong enough or have the technique to do so. The problem children have with larger boats is once a kayak comes of line and starts to turn they often don’t have the strength to pull it back in line so end up spinning. The aforementioned width problem also makes it harder to do effective sweep strokes to correct line. The Weeniwave is very small at just 170cm and will allow kids to learn to manoeuvre the kayak properly.

The final problem is weight. Both on and off the water this affects the manoeuvrability of a kayak. Even the smallest of normal sit on tops will weigh around 15kgs (such as the Tootega Pulse 85). At just 10kgs the Weeniwave is a massive 50% lighter. This makes a real difference for children, making it safe for them to move on land without risking injury and making it far more manageable on the water.

The Weeniwave comes with a deep seat and moulded in foot braces to encourage a good posture when paddling (straight back, slight bend in legs). It also has front, rear and centre grab handles for transport off the water and a small storage hatch, perfect for a cagor lunch on the water! The boat is made of ultra strong PE plastic and is virtually indestructible, so no worries about the kids damaging the kayak!

If you really want to get your child started and proficient early on, the Weeniwave is a choice well worth giving some serious thought to.

Check out our ‘Guide to paddling with children’ for more information on how best to get your little ones started safely on the water.

 

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