Sea kayak after 2 knee joint replacements

I’m 7 months into 2 knee joint replacements. First one went great, a month into the second one… I don’t have all the dexterity I had a year ago(although much less discomfort for the most part) and am wondering if I’ll ever get back into my Valley Avocet. Anybody have any realtime advice?

o boy there are too many angles to this one… Have you put your Avocet on a soft floor and entered it? That’s probably the only way you can get an answer.

otherwise happy shopping !

Get well soon.


If you’re having PT you could tell your therapist that your goal is to be able to enter your kayak. I had a bad leg injury a few years back and my PT helped. Also for me things kept changing for a long time after my injury, though of course it could be different for you. Wishing you the best.

The Avocet is a great kayak, but I always found that the deck configuration pushes your knees out to the side - for me this was quite awkward and uncomfortable. If you do get back in the boat and it’s not working, it might be worth trying/borrowing a different boat. Many of the newer designs keep your knees much straighter and/or allow more room between the thigh braces than the old school Brit boats - The CD “Danish” designs, my Tiderace Xceed, for example. I would try different options as there very well may be a kayak out there that fits your new geometry better if the Avocet doesn’t.

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It’s been hanging since about Oct.'21 since I paddle Lake Erie when the water temps finally get to about 70 degrees. Didn’t use it or my Aquanaut at all last year. Both are 2003 glass versions in excellent condition.I’m a wet entry/exit guy(or was). My plan will be to use the back deck to shimmy into them if possible. I’m probably gonna need new hatch covers as I bought a set(3) about 8 years ago. I replaced them with the original VCP covers and I think a new set will last me. I have been thinking about Select covers though the VCPs have been excellent. I paddled my Hemlock Kestrel or a Mohawk Solo 13 or a Scupper pro TW when I paddled last year. No real problems with exiting them last late summer/fall.

I have a couple of clients with the same background. I’m looking forward to the new Stellar Egret arriving, which will be the redesigned S18 hull with an open deck surfski style cockpit plus hatches and thigh straps. Fast sea kayak with no restrictions on entry/egress at about 43 lbs. Also, sky is the limit for large size shoe paddlers.


Don’t stop trying. Winnona canoe makes a nice rudder 13-14’ canoe that’s fast and easier to get into/out of.

Chuck Guy
Roy, Utah

there are tons of fast pack canoes. Most are made by builders in the Adirondacks… Placid, Hornbeck, Slipstream, Adirondack , Hemlock , Savage River (not in the Adirondacks) Wenonah tried to copy them with the Canak,

But the OP wants a deck I believe. I see people using sea kayaks on calm inland ponds but not so many using an open top craft on the ocean. I do use my RapidFire there however.

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Those ADK canoe builders all make some really nice boats. Swift (out of Ontario) has a good range of pack boats too. On another tack, Northstar/Bell calls their Rob Roy (15 1/2 ft) a decked canoe. Its hull geometry is nearly identical to their Magic, I’m told. Above the waterline, the Rob Roy’s low profile is a big advantage in the wind and the deck sheds water, which comes in handy once in awhile :grimacing:.
None are ocean boats though, at least not for me anywhere outside well protected bays or coves.

Hello. I had simultaneous double knee replacement 4 years ago. Im an avid tennis player. 68 years old. I pushed hard on my PT because I wanted to play competitively and after 4 months of excruciating work Im happy to say that Im kayaking again.
Ive used several different sit insides and found that I had to increase my upper body strength so I could hover over the cockpit while holding the coaming like two pommel horse handles and slide my legs in without too much bending involved.
Ive tried a solo water exit and re-entry and thats almost impossible without a paddle float and upper body strength. I simply avoid rough water.
Good luck.

I’m trying to avoid it because new knees don’t hyperextend and I need hyperextension to get into some kayaks I’ve built and still want to build. After 3 months of PT and another injection, my bum knee can finally hyperextend again after 8 plus months where I couldn’t even straighten it. Don’t know how long I can postpone it, but hopefully long enough to get caught in a hurricane or fall off a cliff…

If you build the boat, make it so you can get in it.

That makes it a different boat.

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Due to insurance stuff, I went thru 4 rounds of injections, which didn’t really help. From what my medical provider advised, I waited a couple years too long. I really don’t agree with that, but I probably would have benefited from earlier surgery. I’m 65 but feel like 18, OK 28, and have a lot of toys and can’t believe I’m done with one aspect of my on water playtime

You don’t paddle with your knees. Find a boat you can get into is right. Bring some pillows to put under your knees. Never quit and never give up.

Surgeons recommend surgery, cuz that’s what they do. I see a medical orthopedist. I won’t see a surgeon until I have decided I want surgery. I have had a number of injections, some worked, some didn’t. I’ve also had 2 nerve ablations. I just don’t see myself being happy with titanium knees or not being able to lift heavy objects (like my Explorer, or even my DOG), so I will hold out as long as possible. Even though I’m partly bone on bone I have very little pain except when flexing past 100 degrees. PT keeps the knee well supported and muscle carries most of the knee’s stress

So when the injections don’t work, it’s time… If I had a desk job, I wouldn’t have gone the replacement route if I only wanted to walk my dogs a 1/2 mile, but I want to go a few or more miles for quite the future. I was bone on bone on both sides…For me, I made the right choice… I also have very good health insurance…Iv’e already met my deductible for this year…$

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By the way, you don’t see a surgeon till till things are getting to the end

Just another thing, I had to be at120 degrees at 4 weeks post op