Do You Need Kayak Paddle Drip Rings?


When kayaking you can expect to get wet. However, having water run down the shaft of your kayak paddle and dripping on your lap can be annoying.

In comes kayak paddle drip rings. These are attached on either side of the paddle and block the water dripping along the shaft allowing it to flow back into the lake other than on your lap.

Do you need kayak drip rings?

Yes, you need kayak drip rings if you want to stop that steady stream of water from getting onto your lap. If you are wearing khaki trousers or shorts, it wouldn’t be a very pleasant sight having water drip onto your groin, would it?

Understanding kayak drip rings

The kayak drip rings are made from rubber which makes them easy to attach. They will do a great job of preventing water from running onto your lap. Sometimes the water can run along with your have which can be uncomfortable especially if it gets to your armpit.

And things can get worse if you are on a tandem kayak.

However, some people believe that the drip rings for kayak paddle are not 100 percent effective and that you will always get a little wet when kayaking. While we do not dispute that drip rings serve to minimize this.

Keep in mind that the paddling technique you use will also determine how wet you get.

Are they necessary?


Some people don’t want water dripping on them while paddling while others are simply okay with it.  During hot days, you may even welcome a bit of a splash to cool you off but if you are kayaking in the winter, then you absolutely will try and avoid getting wet.

So, it will come down to personal preference if you what to use drip rings for a kayak paddle.

Another thing that you might want to consider is the type of stroke that you use such as the forward and reverse sweep stroke. If you use a low paddling technique, then you are less likely to get water on yourself than if you are using a high paddling technique.

Due to the simple operation of gravity on the water, the more horizontal the shaft is when paddling the less water you will splash onto yourself, and the more vertical the shaft, the more water you will get onto yourself.

Depending on the position of the kayak paddle drip rings, they may end up causing you to have more water drip on you. For example, assuming that they are set closer to the paddles, they will scoop water and get it all over you. Drip rings are most effective when they are set at a distance from the paddle.

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You would benefit from learning the different types of kayak strokes.

It’s simple to find the best position for setting your drip rings for kayak paddles. Simply measure the width of your hand from the blade. You may also want to use twice this length.

However, make sure the drip rings are not set too close to your kayak as this will cause them to drain into the kayak.

Make sure you find the best position that will ensure comfortable paddling when on your kayak. Keep in mind that you are going to avoid stuff like how to do a kayak Eskimo roll.

Some Kayak paddle models will feature their own kayak paddle drip rings. If yours do not come with this feature, you can always purchase them at an affordable price. For DIY enthusiasts, you can make your own kayak drip rings using various common materials which may include pool noodles.

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Kayak drip rings are effective at reducing the amount of water that drips onto you when paddling. The trick, however, is to find the best position. Also, make sure that your kayak drip rings fit the shaft of the kayak paddle neatly preventing water from finding space through and dripping onto you.

 More Kayak Accessories Guides:


  1. How to paddle a kayak without getting wet