Hydrofoil Kayak


Thoughts anyone?

Holy noodle
That’s insane.

I am interested
would i need longer paddle? I did my 7th grade science project on hydrofoils…I love the idea.


From the Website
A visit to the hydrofoil kayak website (www.foilkayak.com) should answer your questions. It contains descriptive information, photos and other information re the prototypes under development.

I would just note here that one of the developers is Einar Rasmussen, inventor of the wing paddle; the site includes a technical discussion by him of the power and speed requirements for hydroplaning a kayak, complete with mathematical formulas.

Bottom line (I guess) is that the hydrofoil kayak is now under development and they expect to have a hydrofoil kit available by this summer. They claim it is not only faster but also more stable than a conventional racing kayak.

Very interesting
and it’s good to see some forward thinking.

Correction about wing paddle
Rasmussen did not invent the wingpaddle, he did some improvements of the original design and did better marketing.

The original Wing was produced by Leif Hakansson. The patent is taken by Stefan Lindeberg.

I have a copy of the patent at:


Wonder if they could attach these…
to a rowing shell? 8 person rowing shell = mph???

For it’s purpose…
I believe it’s pretty cool…working as I do on leading edge R&D in the space based military arena, I’m not blind to the value of spin off technologies …but…

My practical side says paddle SLOWER and enjoy the view…It’s not the destination it’s the trip AND the destination.

I have the same problem with backpackers that go ultralight solely to make it possible to do more miles in a day (usually with head down, eyes on their feet).

Disclaimer: I do not have a problem with competitive racing, just viewing the hydrofoil idea from a touring perspective…Paddle your own paddle, hike your own hike…peace.

Now that is cool
I wanna try that.

In a surfski, with
a wing paddle, I can just pass the slowest rowers on the Charles River. I’m trying to imagine the look on the face of one of the faster rowers when I pull up behind him, hit a sprint, and my kayak rises out of the water and zips past.

Now that would be fun : )

I read the theory sections, and one bit of information struck me:

“The current world record for the rowing eight is 5 minutes 22 seconds (6,21 m/s).

The best result for kayak single mens 500m is 1 minute 36 seconds (5,21 m/s).

Using 90 kg displacement, the effective power is 391W.

The best result for kayak single mens 1000m is 3 minute 25 seconds (4,88 m/s).

Using 90 kg displacement, the effective power is 324W.

A top level kayaker can maintain a speed of 4 minutes/km (4,17 m/s) for more than 20 minutes.

Using 90 kg displacement, the effective power is 208W.”

These wattage data are relevant to a question we’ve discussed in other threads about the relative amount of energy burned when kayaking versus other sports. I’d wondered before if perhaps the very strongest kayak sprinters manage to build enough kayak muscle to begin to approximate the energy burned in sports that use the lower body (running, biking, XC skiing, rowing, etc.)

When I run at the gym, my wattage is around 250. I can sprint to over 300. According to the data above, a strong kayaker cruises at 208 watts and the world’s best sprinters hit 391. This strongly suggests that even at the very top levels, it’s simply not possible to build as much muscle and aerobic capacity while kayaking at when doing lower-body sports. I can’t recall the figures, but I know that rowers, for example, are well over 400 watts when sprinting.

…which would make it all the more fun to pass more of them on a Flyak : )


I am ALL over this
VERY cool. Especially if you review some of the videos and the tech paper, once you get onto a plane, you can cruise quite fast with very little effort. Meaning - you can enjoy the scenery, and fight the current back upstream/upcurrent without killing yourself if you need to get back to your car.

Not that I’ve ever not planned for that problem…

Hydrofoiling-just bring lots of muscles
Like any hydrofoil, you need alot of power to bring the craft onto plane where you can sustain your speed for alot less energy. Flying over the water looks great, but I would stongly suggest anybody interested in this yak first try one. Unless your thrust to weight ratio is significant…ie you are real, real…real strong, you’ll never get up on plane. From the video you’ll notice that the paddler is a stud and never relaxes below 100% for the duration of the video. No doubt that records will be broken, but if you are looking for someplace to put your money you better even see if you: 1-can balance the small shell (doubtful for many), 2-have enough strength to make it work. Otherwise you’ll own the fastest kayak on the planet and be relegated to loaning it out as a curiosity.