The most important thing to consider before stepping foot into a kayak is making sure you have the right equipment. Having the correct equipment is key to having a great time and staying safe in the water.
Before you head to any body of water you need to make sure you have the right type of kayak. Kayaks are made for all sorts of water types and different types of kayaks include whitewater, sea and touring kayaks. Your skill level and type of paddling also determines the correct kayak for you. When choosing a paddle it is important to understand that each type of kayaking uses a different paddle. The best way to figure out which paddle to use would be to discuss with a kayaking expert at a store like REI. You should always use a personal flotation device (PFD). A life jacket or life preserver can safe your life in the event of an emergency. Another essential piece of equipment is a spray skirt. A spray skirt is necessary for whitewater and sea kayaking because it keeps the water out of the kayak. It is important to make sure that the spray skirt is the right size. Similar to many recreational activities, you should always wear a helmet.
There are other types of equipment that is not necessary but still important. Depending upon the water temperature, you may want to consider wearing a dry top/wetsuit/drysuit. Booties and gloves can protect you from scrapes and gashes and can help to keep you warm. A rope bag is important when kayaking with a friend because it could help you save his or her life if an emergency were to occur. A knife is another good thing to keep handy if you get stuck under a kayak or tangled.
By donating to Team River Runner or by participating in a Team River Runner event you are directly helping a wounded warrior. Your contribution allows Team River Runner to purchase these kayaking necessities for participants. It is important for the participants to have the correct equipment so they can stay safe on the water. The kayaking equipment varies from the different Team River Runner locations.
Some cool stores to check out Kayaking equipment include LL Bean, REI and kayakshed.com. Professionals here will help you pick out the equipment that is best for you and your kayaking needs. Many kayaking destinations give you the opportunity to rent equipment.
The coolest accessory I found was this accessory case http://www.rei.com/product/814232/sea-to-summit-tpu-accessory-case-large at REI. It looks like an awesome product because you can store things like your phone or a GPS device and know that it will be waterproofed even if the Kayak were to flip. The case is $21.95 and is the perfect way to protect your electronics. Team River Runner could look into a product like this for participants to store important documents or electronics in to stay safe while in the water. I would love to hear if anyone has tried out this product. Happy kayaking!