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Capsize Drill (How to Get back in Kayak after flipping)

One of the important things to understand in Kayaking is the fact that the boat may turn over due to different factors. With this in mind, it is only imperative to learn the skill of getting out of a capsized Kayak. Know how to free yourself from the boat and get used to moving underwater as you escape and break the water surface.

Learn how to get out of a capsized Kayak by performing drills prior to the trip. Make sure that an instructor or experienced kayaker is close by to ensure your safety as you do the exercise and give assistance when necessary. Learn how to perform the Capsize Drill in this section:

Time needed: 10 minutes.

Here is what you need to exit a capsized kayak

  1. Find Water Body with 4 Feet Depth

    Look for a calm stretch of water with a depth of at least 4 feet.

  2. Put on Spray Skirt

    Sit on your Kayak and put your Spray Deck on. Make sure that the release strap is outside the Cockpit.

  3. Lean Over to One Side

    Place your hands on your sides. Take a deep breath and lean over to one side, turning the Kayak upside down.

  4. Turn The Kayak Upside Down

    Do not try to get out of the Kayak unless it is completely upside down.

  5. Bang on The Side of the Kayak

    Bang on the sides of the boat to attract attention.

  6. Pull Spray Skirt Off

    Hold the release strap. Pull it forward and then away from the Cockpit so you can pull the Spray Deck off.

  7. Push Yourself Out from The Kayak

    Put your hands on your sides, lean forward, straighten your legs, and push yourself out of the boat.

  8. Hold The Kayak Tight

    When you are completely out of the Kayak, hold your boat as you break the water surface. Wind can blow it away from you.

  9. Grab the Kayak and Try to Swim toward the Shore

    Grab the front or back end of the boat and swim towards the land.

Getting out of a capsized Kayak is one of the essential Kayaking Skills every kayaker should learn before heading out. Practice the Capsize Drill so you will know what to do should your Kayak turtles in one of your trips.

Last modified: May 22, 2020