Extremely long legged Kayaker

I’m 6’8" , wt 270#

I live on the Ohio River and would paddle 12 months a year if I could find a Kayak I could fit my legs in.

I currently have sit on top kayaks that I exercise with and they are uncomfortable as my leg are by far too long for the foot rests.

Sitting with the knees bent and the pelvis flexed is no fun after 4 hours .

I have read the “big” and kind of tall posts but haven’t seen my exact need discussed… My pants inseam is 39" . I wear size 16 shoes. My femurs and tibia are proportional for my height and I’m 56 y/o but athletic … A P90x grad and still bringing it.

There is no one I’ve met I’m my region with any answers .

I hope to find something to ride and then worry about wet suits…

I’ve been bicycling (found the answer at Trek) with some major modifications… The expenseof a custom fit didn’t seem to make sense with the bike when I purchased it.

Any help appreciated!!!

Big Blue. :slight_smile:

Big Blue. :))

For touring kayaks, there should be
some that have enough foot room, and where the foot braces can be modified to allow for your leg length. Perhaps the footbrace tracks would have to be moved, or the mounting of the braces on the tracks modified to allow your legs to extend.

I’m not that much smaller than you, with size 15 feet, and modifying a “little” 14’ 5" Necky Looksha Sport required only a change of footbraces. The seat was tight against my hipbones, so I “windowed” the seat uprights to give my joints some room. The thigh braces needed to be cut back a bit. The other problem is weight. My Necky can only just manage my 230 pounds.

You need a smart dealer nearby who is willing to spend a slow day helping you try kayaks in the 16 foot range, and planning how footpedals and seat will need to be modified.

You also should be considering canoes. It is easier to find a solo canoe that will carry your weight. If you are sitting, you will have less hip flexion, and your knees can splay somewhat to reduce knee flexion. A fast solo can be paddled with a double blade. You might even consider one of the Colden designs, planned for double blade from the start.

Midwestern conditions often make a canoe easier to live with than a kayak. Getting in and out is easier, loading and unloading is easier.

Build your own if you are handy.

Keep an eye out for some of the older kayak models Like a Pacific Water Sports Sea Otter, Necky Swallow. You can take out the footrests and use the bulkhead as a foot brace. http://danwebb.com/kayak/bigkayaks.htm

Try a Folbot Greenland 2 as a single www.folbot.com, Folbot will let you return it if you don’t like it. Good luck

Sitting position
There is considerable thought that you want your knees bent and a flex at your hip, without the angles being too stiff, to achieve the rotation needed for a good forward stroke. Flattening the legs completely tends to limit torso rotation for most people. And using good rotation and pedaling tends to reduce or eliminate the discomfort you might otherwise feel from being parked in that position without getting some movement in the muscles.

I am not suggesting that you don’t need a boat with a lot of leg room. But you may want to get some guidance on a good position for paddling before making a final cut on how much you need.

Big boy boats
This comes up pretty often, but you sound bigger than big. At 6’4" and 230 with size14 feet, I found the impex asateuge (butchered the spelling) way too big for me and settled on a force cat 5. The as. Is a nice seaworthy boat and is often sold used. In poly the current designs storm is really big on the interior too.

  • mike

A couple of suggestions
First, one of the more stable surfskis. They take a little time and effort to learn the balance but they are great boats. They are a sit-on-top but not at all like standard sit-on-tops. Your knees would be in a vertical position and they are adjustable. Second, as I am sure you have found, people of unusual size often have to resort to custom made. In kayaks, building your own or having someone build it for you is possible. If you are minimally handy you could attend one of the several 1-week workshops where you build your own skin on frame kayak. They are fun to paddle and can be built to any specification.

plenty room
Get a.decked canoe which is another word for a.big ass kayak…plenty of room for comfort. A kruger, clipped. Sea 1 or superior expedition.

P&H Cetus HV
I just say in the Cetus HV in from my demo/instructional fleet with a tape measure. The standard twist lock foot braces allow for a 38" inseam wearing Keen street shoes. The front bulkhead is further away at 42" so it would provide the option for trimming a foam plate for a bulkhead foot rest.

Another option is the P&H Capella 173 which fits super long legged linebackers with no modification.

Of course this all depends on what performance characteristics you want from your kayak.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY



Maybe QCC 500X.
Give Steve at QCC call to see what he thinks regarding fit.

CD Titan
Maybe the Solstice GT Titan would be big enough.

Extremely long legged Kayaker
i’m 6-5 230lb, not quite as long, but some thoughts…

  • remove your foot braces and place a shaped 2" thick pad against your inside forward bulkhead for your feet to rest against. i haven’t used footbraces in years, no regrets! also more room for your feet.

    boats i’ve tried with a lot of overall leg room (ht and width):

    -Sterlings Kayaks Grand Illusion - very roomy and can be customized a bit. i tested the boat, stable yet turns on a dime. give them a holler for info, sterlingskayaks.com. cool guys too.

  • nigel foster shadow, my former boat. room, fast, and agile.
  • off topic, try sup! the surftech universal 12’ board is 5" thick, and we call it the ‘island’ for being so stable. i use it for instruction with bigger folks.

    -maybe look into sit on top touring kayaks. being open deck, your knees won’t hit anything aside from your adjustable thigh straps.