Sea kayaking, as well as, it must be said, any true life activities, is not safe. Going beyond the threshold of your home, you must remember: you will meet a dangerous and aggressive environment outside. Be careful!
The basic safety rules for kayaking are quite simple. Despite this, the following rules must be observed regardless of gender, age, experience and physical training of the kayaker.
1) ALWAYS do wear a life jacket, even if the weather conditions are favorable, the water is warm, and you are a master of sports in swimming.
2) Getting in a kayak, do check that all fasteners, zippers and rubber bands are not damaged and perform their functions.
3) Check the paddle link bracelet, if available (a cord that holds the paddle to the kayak body, to avoid loss of the paddle).
4) Be sure to take enough water and food
5) Do not forget a headwear and sunglasses during the summer months.
6) Before going out, check the weather forecast at the sailing area. If you go out alone, tell someone where you are going.
7) Do not go far from the shore
8) Get an insight into dangerous places in the sailing area, landmarks and possible land areas for emergency evacuation.
10) At night, be sure to turn on the flashlight so that the surrounding vessels can see your location.
11) Try not to go out alone. If you go in a group try to keep within a distance of hearing and visibility.
12) Always try not to overrate your abilities when choosing a route.
13) In any situation, avoid panic, keep a rational and cold mind.
14) In a life-threatening situation, save yourself, not the equipment.
15) In case of danger, do know how to give the SOS signal.
16) Distribute the load in the kayak in an adequate manner.
When loading a kayak, distribute the weight correctly among the compartments. Do have in mind that the most lightweight part of the kayak is the nose (bow), and in the strong wind the nose will constantly fall off to leeward (turning bow away from the wind), and the kayak will “broach” (sheer from side to side with its nose). In this case, it will be helpful to add to the nose load to increase its draft. But if you run before the sea (go downsea), overloading the bow can increase the nose’s plowing in the waves, when the kayak “nose-dives” on a steep wave into the wave trough. This often leads to capsizing.
If you feel insecure under high wave conditions – just load the kayak with stones, for this ballast will create a kind of a keel and will give the kayak some extra stability.