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Some vessels come with adjustable kayak foot braces or molded foot pegs already installed but these may not always offer you the right type of support. This can be a particular issue if you’re taller or shorter than average.
What Are Foot Braces And Pegs For?
Foot braces and pegs are there to allow you to sit comfortably in your kayak. They can allow you to maintain a correct paddling position and posture so that you can paddle efficiently.
Video: How To Position Yourself Correctly In A Kayak
Foot pegs can also allow you to brace yourself in your vessel, for example for turning or for navigating in currents or wind.
Edging your kayak, tilting it slightly onto its side using your hips, will likely require you to use the foot braces so that you can control the level of tilt and the amount of edging.
If you’re in a sit-inside kayak you may find that you use your foot pegs more frequently than in a sit-on-top because you often need to use your knees and hips to control your vessel. And foot braces or pegs can allow you to sit in the correct position for this.
Skills such as the hip snap that you often need to use for rolling your kayak can be easier when you have something to position your feet on, as you usually need to have your knees braced against the deck of your boat.
Why Would I Need Them?
Foot braces can be a useful accessory in a kayak as they can let you adjust the position of your feet so that you can have better control of your boat.
You may find that if you’re taller or shorter than average, adding your own foot braces can be particularly helpful. This is because standard kayak foot pegs may not accommodate your leg lengths and may not offer the best paddling position for you.
How To Install Foot Braces
Step 1: Remove Existing Foot Braces
If you already have foot braces in your kayak, unscrew them and remove them.
Step 2: Measure Correctly
Grab some tape or something you can use as a temporary marker. Sit in your kayak with your seat in the correct position. Stretch your legs out in front of you and stick the tape where you want to install your foot braces.
Step 3: Drill Holes
You may not need to do this if you’re replacing existing foot braces into the same holes. But if not, you may need to drill holes into your kayak in the correct position for the tracks. If you have to drill new holes, remember to fill in the old, unused holes.
Video: Installing New Foot Braces In Your Kayak
Remember to mark the outside of the kayak so that you know where to drill, and double check the measurements and placements so that the holes will be in the right place for the tracks to be installed.
Step 4: Install Your Tracks
Position your tracks inside your kayak and line them up with the holes you’ve drilled. Remember to make sure you install the foot pegs on the correct side, as there will usually be a right foot brace and a left foot brace.
Make sure the screws are tightened and that you can easily adjust the foot pedals.
6 Best Foot Braces For Your Kayak
- Length: 13 inches
- Weight: 1.3 pounds
This Harmony Slidelock Footbrace System comes with all the hardware that you need to install the foot pegs to your kayak, including the tracks, pedals and screws.
The pedals are designed to provide traction for a range of footwear and they can be adjusted while you’re seated.
The track provides 13 inches of adjustment and the kit can be used to retrofit existing foot braces.
- Universal fitting
- Complete kit
- 13 inch adjustment
- Length: 15 inches
- Weight: 1.05 pounds
These Attwood Universal Adjustable Kayak Foot Pegs can be ideal for a range of kayaks, both sit-in and sit-on-top. The tracks can offer you 15 inches of adjustment, making it great for both short and long legs.
The foot pegs are lightweight but durable and feature a trigger lock design. They have universal mounting holes but they don’t come with the hardware to install them on your yak.
- 15 inches of adjustment
- Universal fitting
- Length: 15 inches
- Weight: 1.05 pounds
This Harmony Gear Slide Lock Foot Brace Kit comes with all the hardware you need to fit the foot braces to your boat. The foot pegs can be adjusted within a 15 inch range and they can be easily adjusted while seated using the rods.
The durable foot pedals are designed to give grip for wet shoes, making it easier to keep your feet in place.
- Traction pedals
- Easily adjustable by hand
- Slide lock track
- Length: 12 inches
- Weight: 1 pound
The Shoreline Marine Propel Kayak Foot Braces are designed to be lightweight and durable. They feature traction grip pedals and slide track system for easy adjusting.
Offering 12 inches of adjustment and easy to install mounting points, they can be a great choice for a range of vessels, including fishing kayaks.
- Slide track
- Grip pedals
- Length: 10 x 9 x 6 inches (inflated)
- Weight: 15 ounces
This Advanced Elements Inflatable Foot Brace is designed for Advanced Elements inflatable kayaks but may be able to be used on other inflatable vessels that have similar dimensions.
This foot brace can be inflated and deflated as required, making it convenient for storage and transportation. When inflated it fits into the front of your deck to provide you with foot support, so you only need one to support both your feet.
- Made for Advanced Elements yaks
- Length: 10 inches
- Weight: 1.8 pounds
These Advanced Elements Adjustable Foot Pegs are designed to be used on inflatable kayaks and more specifically with Advanced Elements boats. But you may be able to install them on other inflatable kayaks if you check with your manufacturer first.
Because they are designed to fit inflatable kayaks only, they don’t require any drilling. They attach to your kayak using webbing straps. They have 10 inches of adjustability, and the pegs slide along the track for ease of adjustment.
The pegs can be adjusted one inch at a time.
- For inflatable kayaks
- Slide track adjustment
- 10 inch adjustment
Whether you’re short, tall or average height, kayak foot braces can offer you improved paddling comfort and give you more control over your vessel.
Adding your own foot pegs can be a good idea if your boat either doesn’t have any or they’re in an unsuitable position for you to use properly.
Do you think you could manage without your foot pegs? Leave us a comment to tell us your thoughts. If you think others could benefit from this information, feel free to share this.