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Hi,

I have 2 daughters, 10 and 12, and would like to get either a sit on top kayak or a single IK for them to use. We already have a double IK that gets plenty of use with them, but they tried my kayak on their own and were too scared to try and learn a roll. Which would be better; somehow teach them to roll, get a single IK or some sort of sit on top? I am only planning on having them use it on mild class 3 like Deso.

Thanks
 

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Paddling in to the Future
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my twin daughters started with IK's at that age. I'm sure a sit on top with thigh straps would go over just as well as an IK. but they are comparable in cost. And they would probably have an equal amount of fun in either one. Go with whatever you'd like in that category.
 

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Learning to roll and taking up hardshell kayaking has a very low retention rate.

You have to keep your skills up and with growing kids you might have to rotate equuipment. Having taught for years I now advocate people buying an IK and making sure they enjoy it an go regularly before investing in a hardshell. Get another IK, maybe one more performance oriented. If one of them gets serious put her in a class and see how that goes.
 

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don't bogart that
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I think it comes down to swimming

My kids ducked from eight to twelve. They now are proficient hard shell kayakers at 17 and 15. Duckies give a very stable surface to learn from. They were able to self rescue and rescue one another. They learned fun without fear in the duckie and that translated to they have better skill with mind control while under water while setting up for their roll. They got comfortable swimming rapids, I got comfortable watching them swim. They got comfortable watching me swim. You already have the duckie, keep the fun alive without expectation. They will see the surf and the maneuverability of the kayaks and it will be a natural progression that they will make and watch out, they will be better than you.:p
 

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In case it's relevant, I think SOTs are bit more flip prone than your average IK which is more forgiving of an incorrect lean.
(If I am wrong, please correct me.)
 

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Small IK's

Depending on the size of your kids, take a look at the smaller IK's, like the Aire TomCat LV, the NRS Rascal, and Sevylor XK1, and even the Aire Force. The smaller IK's help offset some of the key downsides of an IK (vs. hardshell) - harder to paddle/control due to width/length while still offering greater stability. It's also nice to roll and stow IKs for transport and storage.

My oldest really liked the TomCat LV until he learned to roll a hardshell. My youngest hated the IK, he thought it was hard to steer and that it often got caught on rocks (low water runs) that he'd bounce off/around in the hardshell.

Here is a picture of my son when he was 9 paddling browns in the TomCat LV - he fell out in that rapid (Zoom Flume) and climbed back in mid-rapid and continued on.
 

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I would go IK.
We had a Torrent SOT when my kids were a bit younger, like 7-11. It was fun for San Juan and Deso, but fat and heavy and not very versatile. An IK will be more portable and versatile down the road. An Alpackaraft is a nice thing to have in the quiver too!
 

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Small Do it now from Fluid?

Duckies are great and I enjoy them. But if you want kids to experience the hard shell style handling without the skirt and roll barriers than the Fluid Do It Now would be great. I transitioned from IK to deck boat in one and had a blast. The small is kid size and $500 delivered.
 

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Hi,

I have 2 daughters, 10 and 12, and would like to get either a sit on top kayak or a single IK for them to use. We already have a double IK that gets plenty of use with them, but they tried my kayak on their own and were too scared to try and learn a roll. Which would be better; somehow teach them to roll, get a single IK or some sort of sit on top? I am only planning on having them use it on mild class 3 like Deso.

Thanks
Hi

I am going to offer a different suggest.

IKs, and kayaks are GREAT fun, but not the only fun.

What about a fun r2 boat...the 2 girls might enjoy being a team.

Also makes for a fun dad and daughter team.

I r2 with my now 17 year old son...fun fun.

just a thought

scott
 

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Solo IK is easily manageable, even for 9 yr old.

And you can use it for self-support hike/fly in trips.
 

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Inflatables are for pools and old people.

I would pick up a Fluid Do it Now. I'm going to pick up two this year--one for myself and one for my 9-year old.
My kids get nervous in a shell and are more prone to punch out and swim (their comfort zone), so the DiN should work well...plus *I* can't WAIT to try it out!
 
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