Seat Pad Suggestions Please

I spent 6 wonderful hours paddling down a river yesterday, but unfortunately have a very sore “bum” to remember the experience! I normally paddle a Dagger boat, but yesterday I paddled my Pungo 120. I adjusted the seat/foot pegs trying to find a good position, but to no avail. It seems that if I take the Pungo on longer trips, this always happens…


Any recommendations? A Padz or NRS soft seat? I even thought about just getting an inexpensive seat cushion and using that. The boat does well on longer, flat water, but really does a number on my rear…



Same problem
I have the same problem. You may want to consider the following.

I’ve got this product on order. Hopefully, it will be the solution.

I have been using a Skwoosh ( cushion for a couple of years and have been satisfied with it. Prior to that I used a cushion which was so thick that it seemed to me that it raised my center of gravity, although only an inch or so, and that made me feel a little uncomfortable when the water was not completely flat.

I broke down and bought the inflatable seat-bottom designed for the Nautiraid Greenlander. It’s helped a lot.

Thermarest SportSeat
velcro into position and sit on it, let air out until sit bones just touch. It’ll be nearly 80% deflated but it works.

We use the Thermarest 3/4 self-inflating camping pads fold double under, single up the back - very comfortable - check the archives or email me for more info.

me too
Same problem with my Pungo 120. Mine is about 3-4 years old. They brag about the fancy seat system but I cant get comfortable!

This company makes an awesome seat pad in a couple of different designs. It is a gel filled seat pad (not too thick) and they work great fo us.

just sent this e-mail out
to someone asking a similiar question:

A couple of points:

A lot of time numbness in the legs or butt results from pressure on the lower back from the back band and not the seat. Especially if you like to have a tight fit where the back-band is really snug on your back and your feet are firmly planted on the foot-pegs. This puts pressure on the sciatic nerve which can cause leg and butt numbness as well as leg pain.

I am going to apologize up front if what I am writing is patently obvious and as you read it you want to check the box where it says “No that didn’t work lets try something else”.

Anyway, what I ended up using was the Jackson kayaks “Sweet cheeks) seat which is very popular with the whitewater crowd. Essentially it is a pad filled with the same material as bean bags (sort of) and a tube that you can fill up with air. The way to use it is not to have it full of air when you paddle but rather to blow a couple of breaths into it and then settle into the seat pushing all the little round balls around with your legs and butt and then letting the air out so that the little balls then become frozen in place due to the vacuum, perfectly conforming to your butt.

Personally I wish it had a few more of the little balls in it but I suppose it is used on top of some of the stock seats that are molded into whitewater boats? I dunno. I do recommend it though as it is very very comfortable all told. Perhaps a very thin piece of mini-cell over the entire area then this thing on top would make for a slightly softer seat.

I use a piece of mini-cell foam that is sculpted down for an occasional back rest. (Actually I use it a lot more for being able to stretch out over the back deck without digging my back into the coaming of the boat!)

The trick, and again apologies if I am being obvious, is to not use the back-band or foam piece at all and paddle leaning slightly forward (a lot easier said than done)

Really do think that the back-band / tight foot-pegs combination may be much more of a culprit.

Good luck and hopefully you will find something that will work for you. I also have a very sensitive back and have been through this a lot.


I have the Jackson Sweet Cheeks in a Dagger Mamba and love it. I had the numb legs thing until I got it. It is more popular witht the whitewater crowd as mentioned, but it will fit in any boat. You just have to watch for the funny stares as you put your head between your legs down in the cockpit and suck on the tube to get the air out. The nice thing about this set-up is that you can change the amount of air in the seat and have different positions. I however have set mine for my butt and have not changed it in a year.

Good Luck


Thank you!
I appreciate the replies and suggestions and will report back of my “success” LOL.

Thanks again to all the PNet’rs.

sweet cheeks
just checked out the website,wow,that looks like a crazy smart idea. Any experience on what happens if a person wet exits and re-enters? I’m wondering about sea kayak application for those who don’t roll well and might be involved in self/assited rescues.

they have two ways of attaching
first is a couple of velcro strips on the hull that the sweet cheeks stick to. Additionally, there is a strap on wither side that can be attached around either the seat pan or the back band attachments to keep it in place. I only use it on bare hulls in sea kayaks as I don’t have a whitewater boat yet.


…Gel pad
Think mine might be “YakPads”…not sure, but it’s filled with gel and it’s comfortable. My guess is that the movement of gel inside prevents the static pressure muscle/tendon/bone…etc.


third the sweet cheeks
I’ve used the NRS foam seat (terrible), Padz, various foam creations, and the Swoosh (second best) in my very low volume Black Pearl, and nothing is remotely as comfortable as Sweet Cheeks. Also, because it molds to your body, it really enhances lateral control. Highly recommended.