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Best Kayak Seats – Your Ultimate Guide for 2021

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Whether your kayak is the most expensive or cheapest on the market, you are still going to sit in it on the water. This makes kayak seats one of the most important components of kayaks. Having a seat that’s as hard as a rock or simply not comfortable enough means you are not going to enjoy your time on the water. Before you know it, you’ll start getting plagued with backpain, neck aches, and ultimately leg numbness. Most times, you’ll have to cut your kayaking short due to these inconveniences.

The seats of most kayaks leave much to be desired. There are some kayaks with very good seats on the market though, but you just have to buy an aftermarket kayak seat if you want maximum comfort. If you are the type that loves to kayak for hours or spend all day on the water, then you should consider getting a quality kayak seat.

There are tons of kayak seats on the market with some being better than the others. If you’ll be buying an aftermarket kayak seat, then said seat must be better than the existing one in your yak, right? It is in light of this that I compiled a list of the very best kayak seats available on the market today. Continue reading to know more about these seats.

The 7 Best Kayak Seats for 2021

Penban Deluxe Padded Kayak Seat

penban Deluxe Padded Kayak Seat Fishing Boat Seat with Storage Bag,Detachable Universal Paddle-Board Seat,Adjustable Paddle Board Seat,Fitting Design for All Body Sizes (1 pc)

$50.77  in stock
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

Thanks to the high-quality EVA foam interior and 210D polyester exterior, the Penban Deluxe padded kayak seat is one of the most comfortable kayak seats on the market. This allows you to enjoy all-day comfort on this seat. No more back pain, neck aches, and leg numbness.

You’ll love the high back design and padded supports which even provide more comfort. I like that this seat can be used by kayakers of all sizes whether large or small.

This seat is compatible with many kayaks and boats. The hooks on this seat are made from very durable materials and are corrosion resistant. You can adjust this seat to fit any kayak by using the 4 adjustable straps. You have 2 straps in the front and 2 straps in the rear giving you a wide range of acceptability.

There is a waterproof detachable storage bag at the back which is the icing on the cake as it offers extra storage space for small things like cameras and water bottles.

 Specifications

  • Material: polyester
  • Padding: EVA foam
  • Seat size: 15 x 12 in / 38 x 31 cm
  • Padding size: 20 x 18 in / 52 x 45 cm

Pros

  • Very comfortable.
  • Compatible with a wide range of kayaks.
  • Corrosion-resistant hooks making it suitable for saltwater.
  • Adjustable straps.
  • Comes with a storage bag.
  • High durability.

Cons

  • N/A.

Other Buying Options:

Vibe Kayaks Deluxe Padded Kayak Seat

Vibe Kayaks Deluxe Padded Kayak Seat Deluxe Sit-On-Top Cushioned Back Support Kayak and Canoe Seat

 out of stock
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

The Vibe Deluxe padded seat has one of the greatest backrests you’ll ever encounter on the market which will make you as comfy as you can be when kayaking. The seats are also padded and heavily cushioned to make your stay as long as you want on the water without experiencing any pain.

This kayak seat comes with four adjustable straps that are connected to marine grade brass clasps. This allows this seat to be compatible with a wide range of kayaks. As long as your kayak has deck loops or d-rings, you’ll be able to use this seat in it.

Installing this on your kayak should be easy and straightforward enough. There is also a waterproof detectable bag that can be used to store small items. These items will be protected from water as you paddle your way through water.

I like that this kayak seat is also durable. No matter how comfy a kayak seat is, you won’t be getting value for your money if you will not be using the seat for a long time. Thankfully, this seat is built to last for a very long time.

 Specifications

  • Material: polyester
  • Padding: EVA foam
  • Seat size: 12 x 14.5 in / 30 x 37 cm
  • Padding size: 20 x 18 in / 51 x 45 cm

Pros

  • Optimum backrest support.
  • Easy to install.
  • Heavy cushioning makes this seat comfortable.
  • Detachable waterproof storage bag.
  • Tough and durable.

Cons

  • No setup instructions in the package. A quick Google search or YouTube video will suffice should you have any issues with installation.

Yakpads Cushioned Seat Pad

Yakpads High Back Cushioned Seat Pad, Gel Seat Pad for Kayaks, Portable Seat Cushion for Outdoor Watersports and Recreation - Cascade Creek (High Back)

$64.95  in stock
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

Another quality kayak seat that has gained a lot of popularity in the kayaking space. The high back design offers lumbar support which is something that most kayak seats do not provide. In addition to this, there is also an insulated gel design which is meant to protect anyone sitting on this seat from cold or hot seating surfaces. The Yakpads kayak seat is going to maintain a normal temperature throughout your time on the water.

There are straps on this kayak seat you can use to securely attach to your yak. Mounting this kayak is hassle-free and fast. The straps also provide stability for the seat as you paddle your way through water. You’ll also find to easy to move around when paddling.

Believe it or not but you can also use this kayak seat outside your kayak like at sporting events or in the car for added comfort with its high back. The high-quality materials confer incredible durability on this kayak seat and you’ll be using it for a very long time.

 Specifications

  • Material: neoprene
  • Padding: gel padding
  • Seat size: 16 x 12 in / 40 x 30 cm
  • Padding size: 16 x 9 in / 40 x 22 cm

Pros

  • Provides lumbar support.
  • Super comfortable.
  • Easy installation.
  • Universal mounting system.
  • Insulated design.
  • Very durable.
  • Versatile.

Cons

  • Not too thickly padded.

Other Buying Options:

YakGear Manta Ray Deluxe SeatOur Top Pick

YakGear SMR, Manta Ray Deluxe Seat, Fits Sit On Top or Sit Inside Kayaks and Canoes

$130.89  in stock
5 new from $130.89
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

The YakGear SMR kayak seat offers plenty of support in different situations. Manufactured with a height of 19 inches and a thickness of 1 inch, this seat is one of the most comfortable yak seats out there and will be a great solution to kayakers who love longer paddle adventures.

The bottom of this seat is designed to be thicker and made from EVA foam which provides extra support and cushioning making this seat a very comfortable one.

I like that the size of this kayak seat is moderate, making the seat suitable for different types of kayaks. Attaching this seat to your kayak is fast once you have a pad eye kit or deck loops. You’ll also find two D-rings at the back of this seat which can be used to attach accessories.

When it comes to kayak seats, the YakGear SMR Manta Ray Deluxe is certainly among the better options out there. Even though it’s not a stiff and sturdy construction, when properly set up it provides plenty of support in various situations.

This kayak also has water gutters at the bottom of the seat and their purpose is to drain out any water that splashes on the seat as you paddle. This will ensure that you are not sitting in a puddle.

 Specifications

  • Material: polyester
  • Padding: EVA foam
  • Seat size: 19 x 15 in / 48 x 38 cm
  • Padding size: 19-inch tall, 1-inch thick

Pros

  • Excellent comfort and support.
  • Thick and comfy padding.
  • Non-skid bottom.
  • Water gutters to keep the seat free from water.
  • Long-lasting.

Cons

  • More suited for larger people, smaller people can use it too but they won’t fill out the seat.

Other Buying Options:

BKC UH-PS223 Padded Kayak Seat

BKC UH-PS223 Universal Sit-On-Top Premium Memory Foam Padded Kayak Seat and Backrest with Adjustable Straps for Kayaking and Fishing by Brooklyn Kayak Company

$51.97  in stock
1 used from $33.57
Free shipping
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

If you are looking for a universally adaptable kayak seat, then you should take a look at this BKC kayak seat. This kayak seat is one of the best sit-on-top kayak seats on the market but can also be used as a sit-in kayak seat. And this versatility s one of the reasons behind its popularity.

Another attraction behind this seat is the level of comfort it offers. This BKC kayak seat offers comfortable lateral wings that cup and supports your back anytime you recline on the seat. As a result, your back will be well supported as you kayak and there will be no pain or aches of any kind.

The molded foam material used in the seat is another reason why it is so comfortable. Yet, the molded foam is durable making this seat one that will give you value for your money.

You can mount this kayak seat to your yak at any height you want. There are customizable webbing strappings and brass clips on this seat to mount it on your kayak. You’ll need D-rings to attach this seat to your kayak.

 Specifications

  • Material: polyester and neoprene
  • Padding: molded foam
  • Seat size: 12 x 14.75 in / 30 x 37 cm
  • Padding size: 17.7 x 20.25 in / 45 x 51 cm

Pros

  • Can be used with a wide range of kayaks.
  • Well-cushioned for maximum comfort.
  • Excellent back support.
  • Easy to install.
  • Durable.

Cons

  • No storage bag included.
  • Clips aren’t suited for saltwater.

OceanMotion Ergo-Fit Kayak Seat

OceanMotion Ergo-Fit sit on top Kayak seat

 out of stock
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

Thanks to the 2.5-inch padding on this seat, the OceanMotion Ergo-Fit is a very comfortable kayak seat. The back support of this kayak seat is designed to be very rigid making this seat especially beneficial to people with a bad back. The thick padding also allows kayakers to spend as much time as they want on the water without feeling pain or aches. I also like the firm nature of the foam as it means this seat will not bottom out after use.

With the width of the seat bottom designed at 16 inches, the OceanMotion Ergo has one of the widest, and consequently very comfortable seats on the market. The outer part of this kayak seat is manufactured from neoprene, a material with insulating properties and also waterproof.

The ease of installation of this kayak seat is a great feature. The adjustable straps, which are made of nylon, can be used to mount the seat in your kayak by attaching the straps to existing points on your vessel. There is also a storage bag in the package you can use to store small items.

 Specifications

  • Material: neoprene
  • Padding: EVA foam
  • Seat size: 18-inch height, 2.5-inch thick

Pros

  • Extra thick cushioning (2.5-inch)
  • Optimum support and comfort.
  • Can easily support heavy people.
  • Easy to mount on your kayak.
  • Detachable storage bag included.
  • Very durable.

Cons

  • Brass connectors may corrode in saltwater over time.
  • Might be large for smaller people.

Other Buying Options:

Skwoosh Expedition Kayak Seat

Expedition Kayak Seat 20" High Back Support with Lumbar Roll and Nylon Gel seat Bottom for Kayaking Comfort

$126.06  in stock
4 new from $126.06
Free shipping
as of May 1, 2021 7:08 pm

The Skwoosh Expedition kayak seat is designed for kayakers that intend to go on long kayaking expeditions and are looking for extra comfort as well as more back support. Long kayaking expeditions can quickly seem like hell if you don’t have the right seat. There is also a 1-inch thick waterproof gel on the body of the cushion and it serves to absorbs any water that gets on the surface of the seat.

There are two plastic battens in the reinforced back of the Skwoosh Expendition kayak seat and their job is to keep this seat as solid and rigid as possible which is good for your back. Being 20 inches tall, this seat is well capable of providing support to both the upper and lower back.

Thanks to four swivel clips, which are corrosion resistant making them suitable for saltwater, you can easily attach this seat to your kayak. Additional features like insulated water bottle holders and rear mounted bungee are icing on the cake.

 Specifications

  • Material: polyester nylon
  • Padding: fluidized gel
  • Seat size: 24 x 20 in / 60 x 50 cm
  • Padding size: 20 in / 52 cm

Pros

  • Built for long trip touring kayakers.
  • Has a waterproof gel cushion.
  • Offers top-notch comfort.
  • Has a bungee net for gear storage.
  • Very durable.

Cons

  • The rear netting will not be accessible on sit-in kayaks.

Other Buying Options:

Best Kayak Seats – The Guide 

Now that you know the best kayak seats on the market, I’ll be taking you through an extensive buying. This will provide you with all you need to consider before buying a kayak seat thereby giving you valuable information with which you’ll make a decision and choose a kayak seat that meets your needs.

Do You Need to Upgrade Your Kayak Seat?

This is the first question you need to answer before looking for a new kayak seat. It’s easy to know if you need to upgrade your seat. If you find yourself quickly become uncomfortable and expiring back pain. Neck pain, and leg numbness when you are paddling, then it’s time to start considering getting a new kayak seat.

Your factory kayak seat (the seat that comes with the kayak) may be comfortable on short kayaking expeditions but not on longer expeditions. If this is the case and you are the type that goes on longer expeditions, then you need to upgrade your seat to make your life more comfortable on the water. Kayaking is meant to be fun and not an avenue to accumulate all kinds of pain and aches.

There are some kayaks that have seats that can’t be modified. You are essentially stuck with the seat made by the yak’s manufacturer whether good or bad. But many kayak brands allow you to replace your factory seat with an aftermarket one. Advanced and experienced paddlers usually male sure to buy kayak models that have replaceable seats in case they want to replace the factory seat sometime.

How to Choose Your Kayak Seat

Materials

The type and quality material used to manufacture a kayak seat will determine the level of comfort it offers as well its durability. Below are popular materials used to manufacture kayak seats and their characteristics.

Neoprene is a popular material used to make kayak seats and is well-known for its flexibility and stability under different conditions. Also, neoprene is very durable and waterproof making it capable of withstanding water splashes.

Nylon is another material used for kayak seats. The material is less expensive than neoprene and is a preferred choice for many manufactures. Nylon is also very durable and long lasting but it is not as water-resistant as neoprene.

Polyester is a material similar to nylon in durability and sturdiness albeit a little weaker but it’s more pleasant to touch. This material is capable of absorbing moisture thereby keeping the seat and your clothes dry.

Types of Padding

This is another important factor to consider in a kayak seat. A kayak with good padding will keep you warm and comfortable.

EVA foam is the most common padding material used in kayak seats because of its economical cost as well as its exceptional durability. The material is also light and won’t cause overheating. However, there is the drawback of the material compressing after some time and this can make the seat to be slightly less comfortable. Manufacturers are now making the EVA foam in their seats to be less susceptible to compression. I included kayaks from such manufacturers on this list.

Molded foam is another material used for padding in kayak seats. This material is more comfortable for longer kayaking expeditions. It’s however sensitive to temperature and may become hot on hot summer days.

Gel padding is another type of kayak seat padding and is not as durable as EVA foam or molded foam. However, the material provides excellent back and thigh support and doesn’t bottom out.

I must also mention that thickness doesn’t translate to better quality when it comes to padding. It’s more about the regions of the seat that are padded as this will determine the level of comfort you get from the seat.

Comfort & Breathability

Comfort is one of the reasons why you are buying an aftermarket seat so you have to go for a very comfortable seat. The kayak seats on this list have been used by various kayakers and verified to be very comfy so you have nothing to worry about on that front.

Breathability is another feature to look for if you’ll be paddling on hot summer days or in a hot climate. Breathable seats allow air to pass through the padding to your thigh and back and absorb moisture from them. Breathable seats are even more important for sit-on-top kayaks as the seat will continuously get wet and you’ll need the seat’s filling to dry fast. And this will keep your clothes dry and prevent them from absorbing water.

Back Height – Back Support

The more a kayak seat allows you to sit in the most applicable natural position, the better. This means the higher the backrest of a kayak seat, the more comfortable you will be. This doesn’t mean a seat has to support your entire back as this can become irritating when you are paddling quickly or fishing.

A rule of thumb is for very tall kayakers (about six feet tall and more) to go for large seats that have back height between 12-18 inches. A back height of 12-inch or less is ideal for shorter kayakers.

Seat Size / Compatibility

It’ll be frustrating for you to buy a kayak seat just to find out it doesn’t fit in your kayak. So before buying a seat, be sure to find out the measurements of your kayak to determine if your seat option is compatible or not. The seat you are buying has to fit in and also be compatible with your kayak. I don’t think you’ll be having trouble here with the seats on this list.

Versatility

Many kayak seats are designed to be compatible with a wide range of kayaks. Also, there are many seats that can be used for both sit-on-top and sit-inside kayaks. However, make sure that a seat is not specifically labeled for a certain type of kayak as such seats may not be compatible with your vessel.

Mounting Straps / Stability

This is another very important factor, especially for people that go kayak fishing. Mounting straps are what you’ll use to attach your seat to the kayak and for this reason must be very strong and sturdy. It’s important that you go for kayak seats that have corrosion-resistant straps if you’ll be paddling on saltwater.

A kayak seat with good mounting straps will be stable. And seat stability is very important, especially for kayak anglers. This is because a stable seat allows kayak anglers to sit comfortably while fishing without losing focus because of a wiggling seat.

Storage

Many people don’t really need this as there’s already space in the kayak for gear storage. But having extra storage space is never a bad thing, is it? But storage shouldn’t be among the top reasons why you choose a kayak seat though having space for small items like bait, water bottles can only be a good thing.

Final Thoughts

A kayak seat can make or break your kayaking experience. As a result, it’s important you have a quality kayak seat. Choosing a kayak seat is no easy task and I hope the reviews and buying will make the decision making process a lot easier for you. Comfort by far is the most important factor when choosing a kayak seat. And as you can see from the buying guide, there might be a need for compromises.

Choose a comfy seat and see kayaking in a whole new light!

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