Can You Paddle A Tandem Kayak Solo?

Kayaking is one heck of a hobby to get engaged with. It can be performed either solo or with others, it’s a great way to add some excitement into your life. Whether you are engaging with whitewater rafting or fishing, a kayak can be an especially versatile means to enjoy various water sports. There are 2 types of them commonly available on the market: the solo and the tandem kayak. A tandem is designed to be paddled by 2 people. However, people are considering the prospect of paddling one, solo. Is this actually possible?

Tandem kayaking solo
That’s almost solo

There are many reasons why people find it as a practical option to go for this kind of watercrafts. Of course, the first reason is that it allows them to enjoy kayaking when they are with someone. As they say, 2 is always better than 1. Navigation is much easier when 2 people are paddling together. What’s more, it’s fun when you’re sharing the fun of kayaking together. Another reason why some people choose a tandem kayak is because it boasts more space. This can come in handy when you are carrying other stuff such as luggage. It is due to these inherent advantages why a lot of enthusiasts are going for these instead of traditional ones. However, the question is this: can a tandem kayak be paddled solo? The short answer is yes. It is very much possible to row it efficiently even while you are alone. In fact, there are a lot of paddlers who use these even while they are alone. Some veteran kayakers are even claiming that they have been rowing these alone with 50 pounds of equipment in the other seat. Different people, ranging from individuals transporting their children via kayak to rescue personnel who carry equipment, are rowing solo without much problem. Provided that you can get used to the length and heft of a tandem kayak, you can definitely operate one even while you’re alone. So how can you get started with paddling a tandem kayak while going solo? The best way to do so is to simply start rowing. Compared to a solo kayak, it carries more mass, so mastering how to control it alone may take time. Not only would you have to develop your navigation skills, but you also have to develop your physical strength. It would be a difficult task at first, but eventually you can get the hang of it. Once you do get used to it, you can paddle it as if you are paddling a solo version of it. However, if you are a kayaking newbie or you are just starting the transition to control a two man vehicle, it’s advised that you start in calm waters. Is it possible to paddle a tandem kayak solo? The answer is definitely yes. However, there are some caveats to it. You must train yourself to become a proficient paddler first. Once you do, you can self-paddle a tandem kayak with the best of them. You’ll even be surprised on how you’ll smoke other kayakers when you ride a solo kayak for a change! If you’d like to get some more information on tandem kayaks, go check out:


Choosing The Best Tandem Kayak Paddle – How-To

Choosing The Best Tandem Kayak Paddle

The level of adventure that one experiences while kayaking depends to a great extent on the type of paddle that is used, having the best tandem kayak isn’t enough… When it comes to landing on water, making the trip safe is very important. Boating is the best activity that gives vacationers a chance to enjoy to the fullest. So far as kayaking is concerned, the types of kayak and paddle are very important to be considered before you start your sea journey. It is the type and nature of the water based on which you need to make a suitable selection.


The paddle for kayaking is chosen based on several factors, some of which have been mentioned below:

  • Length: The length of the tandem kayak paddles range from 220cm to 255cm. There are some general rules that can be followed as far as choosing the paddles for tandem kayaking based on length is concerned. For example – taller individuals or wider boats should opt for paddles of 240cm and onwards, while an average-sized paddler should go for paddle of 230 to 235 cm. For recreational paddlers and individuals with short height are generally recommended paddles of length 220 to 225cm.
  • Comfortable Fitting: Whether the paddles fit you is something, the answer for which can only be found when these aspects are clear – width of the boat, style of your paddling, your torso length, for whom are you buying i.e. an adult or a child. This is because wider boats require longer paddles; quick strokes will need shorter paddles, while individuals with lengthier torso will need longer paddles and vice versa and lastly, if you are to kayak with your child, choose paddlers specially designed of kids.
  • Material used: Next on the list of factors affecting the choice of paddle for tandem kayak is the material used for manufacturing the paddle. Based on the activity that you want the paddles to be used for, you should make your selection. Wooden paddles ensure smoother movement of the boats in water, while fiberglass made paddles are fit for complex blade shaped and it is lighter in weight with guaranteed durability besides being maintenance free. Other materials of which the paddles of tandem kayak are made of include carbon fiber, aluminum, plastics, etc.
  • Design: The blades of the paddle for tandem kayaks may be feathered or non-feathered. The feathered blades are rotated at the angles of the blades facing each other and hence provide wind resistance. However, smaller angles of the blades lead to efficient movement in twisty water. The non-feathered blades are parallel to each other.
  • Shape: Symmetrical blades are there that need lot of effort for each stroke but help you get through the water quickly. For efficient paddling, you can opt for asymmetrical blades of the tandem kayak paddles.

Now when you know the pros and cons of the each paddle, you can make a perfect choice based on the factors mentioned above and also nature of activity that you opt for while tandem kayaking.

You should also read this for more information on tandem kayak accessories:

Tandem Kayaks Have Many Subcategories

Different Types of Tandem Kayaks

Is kayaking your hobby? If yes, then you can choose to spend your holiday with your beloved at the spot offering best water activities. Kayaks are of two types – single to tandem. Single kayak is fit for you when you are planning for boating alone, while tandem kayak will be the best if you take a partner with you. If you are not an expert kayaker, you won’t face any problem as your friend or spouse accompanying you will take you to the destination. In short, in a tandem kayak, if a person does not gain an expertise in kayaking, his/her partner can help him reach the destination with his expertise.

Kayaking on a rapid

Co-ordination between the two partners on tandem kayaks is one of the most important parts of the boat ride. One of them informs about the hurdles on the way and the other takes the boat from a safer side. Both the persons on the boat have a vital role to play while tandem kayaking. Base on the seating arrangement on the kayak, however, tandem kayaks are classified into three categories – sit-on-top kayaks, sit-in-recreational kayaks and sea kayaks.

Sit-on-top kayaks are considered to be the most popular style of kayak meant for tandem kayaking. Lower cost and easy usability makes these types of kayaks the best for a common man. Besides these features, what makes sit-on-top kayaks more preferred by the people is it being maintenance free. For resorts and outfitters, this type of tandem kayak is the first choice. In lower Atlantic states and Gulf of Mexico, you will mostly find sit-on-top tandem kayaks for boating purposes. Apart from entertainment, people use these kayaks mostly for fishing, scuba diving, surfing waves, short distance trips, snorkeling, etc. This kayak made of polyethylene plastic will be perfect choice for you if you have a larger body size.

Sit-in Recreational kayaks are longer to sit-on-top kayaks having length of 14-16 feet and also slightly narrower with less than 30 inches. These kayaks are generally found on lakes, flat water rivers and bays. Being made of polyethylene plastic, these recreational kayaks are quite durable even if they are used roughly. On sit-on-top kayaks, your body is completely exposed to wind and water, while on sit-in recreational kayaks; you remain completely protected from wind. These types of kayaks are faster and tend to be more efficient than sit-on-top tandem kayaks.

Sea kayaks are even longer with a length of 16-23 feet and narrower than the recreational kayaks. There are two separate cockpits available to be covered by sprayskirts, thereby forming a seal that is watertight. Because of the bulkheads present in the sea kayaks, floatation is controlled. Along with this, there are dry storage compartments in front, center and rear. These boats are preferred by boaters because of the protection it provides and efficiency that it offers in its ride.

The above-mentioned types of tandem kayaks have different features suitable for different individuals in terms of their body size, water activity they want to use them for, protection they provide, durability, etc.

Read more about tandem kayaks here

Tandem Kayaks Are The Best – Here’s Why!

Yes, this is what everyone has to rent or buy when he/she decides to go for a sea adventure. When it comes to amusement and vacation, no one plans for it alone. People always plan their holiday with someone, which may be their friend or family. In that case, tandem kayak serves to be one of the best options for a thrilling act at sea.


Tandem kayaks are designed such that even if one of the paddlers is not comfortable with boating, the other one with expertise in boating could take him to the destination. However, there are certain points that will give you an overall idea about the times when tandem kayaks work in best way:

  • There are many people who desire to use a solo boat for their aquatic trip. But lack of skills restricts them from doing so. Tandem kayaking gives an opportunity to a beginner paddler to learn from an expert kayaker. When the beginner boater sits up front, he/she follows the direction and paddling pattern of an experienced paddler on the rear seat. This enables the novice paddler to learn fundamental paddle strokes, techniques and other boat handling tricks. In short, tandem kayaking is the best for training the beginner paddlers so that they could unhesitatingly handle the solo kayaks.
  • In a tandem kayak, if one person who is paddling is stronger than the other, the lack of paddling skills in the other paddler never affects the speed of the boat. Both the paddlers reach the destination at the same time without making any one of them wait for the other. If you have your kids with you, you can easily opt for this type of kayaking to make the trip adventurous for them as well.
  • There are many people around the globe who treat their pets as the member of their family. If you have a pet to take for a sea ride during your vacation, tandem kayaking is to be used. This is because even if one of the paddlers has paws, it allows the boat to move conveniently and reach the end point at a desirable time.
  • In case, you need a spacious boat for transporting things from one side to another, tandem kayaks are helpful. You can use the front compartment of the kayak to load it with equipment and transfer it to the required place.

If you want your partner to sit on the boat without needing to paddle it, “princess” tandem kayaking paddling should be opted for. In this type of paddling, whoever accompanies you need not paddle rather he/she just sits in front and enjoy the ride. Besides all these, tandem kayak also acts as the best tool for transportation during emergencies. IF you have to carry an injured or sick person, this is the only transport which could guarantee a soothing ride for the patients.

The above-mentioned points justify the usage of tandem kayaking for a safe and sound adventure during your sea trips.


My name is Alex and I’m the owner of this blog. 


Everyone has heard it said hundreds and hundreds of times, over and over again, you have to live your passion to be able to accomplish anything in life and actually be happy..

I’ve heard this from dozens of business books, motivational videos and plenty of other resources, it’s like a mantra that every single successful person will repeat to you, to any questions you might ask, or whatever you say.

I’m a big fan of all kinds of water sports, I love diving (I’ve taken many PADI courses for this), surfing, swimming and tandem kayaking. These are the things I love doing the most, despite the time of the year of how I feel. 

If it’s a Sunday morning and I feel like hell, I’ll go for a swim for a few hours and come back refreshes, feeling AMAZING.

Taking these two things into consideration, almost a year ago I decided to start working in the field that I love. I started teaching kayaking to local people here, renting my tandem kayaks out to them and I also decided to create which is a website with tons of reviews on tandem kayaks, and many many high quality articles on the subject.

This website has allowed me to spend the majority of my time writing and talking about the thing I love most, which means that it doesn’t even feel like work, but at the same time it is also generating an income for me.

The website is getting many many visitors every day, looking to purchase tandem kayaks and my posts help them find the best ones for their needs. In turn I sometimes get a percentage of the deals they do with Amazon, if they decide to purchase something thanks to me. 

This has allowed me to spend even more time on my hobbies, which I discussed above. That also means that I have learned a lot more on the subject, which in turn allows me to write even more amazing content. 

Since the site is something that represents me, I can only write very official articles there and that involves a lot of editing and countless of hours of working on each blog post. 

I sometimes want to talk general stuff instead of just writing perfect content, so that’s why I’ve decided to create this blog on wordpress. 

Here you will find different variations on the articles I have on my main site, looking at things from a slightly different perspective. I’m also going to share stories on my kayaking experiences and hopefully gain some new readers for both sites.

Stay tuned for my posts! 🙂

A great blog on tandem kayaks and everything related