Can kayaking make you seasick? Everything You Need to Know

Can kayaking make you seasick? Everything You Need to Know
Photo by Master Unknown / Unsplash
Table of contents


Welcome to this blog post on whether kayaking can make you seasick. Kayaking is an exciting and thrilling outdoor activity that many people enjoy, but some may wonder whether it comes with the risk of seasickness. If you've never experienced seasickness before, it can be an uncomfortable and unpleasant feeling, leaving you feeling dizzy, nauseous, and sometimes disoriented.

Yes, kayaking can make you seasick. The motion of the water can cause a disturbance in the inner ear, leading to symptoms of seasickness such as nausea, dizziness, and vomiting. However, the risk of seasickness while kayaking can be minimized by taking certain precautions such as choosing the right location, staying hydrated, maintaining proper breathing, and staying calm on the water. With proper preparation and technique, kayaking can be a fun and enjoyable activity for everyone, even those who are prone to seasickness.

In this post, we'll explore the relationship between kayaking and seasickness. We'll discuss what seasickness is, what causes it, and who is most susceptible to it. We'll also explore how kayaking affects seasickness and what factors to consider when planning a kayaking trip. Finally, we'll provide tips to prevent seasickness while kayaking and post-kayaking care to alleviate any symptoms that may occur.

Our goal is to educate and inform you about the risks of seasickness while kayaking and how to take measures to prevent it. We encourage everyone to try kayaking, and we hope that by reading this post, you'll feel more confident and prepared to take on this thrilling water activity.

Understanding Seasickness

Seasickness is a type of motion sickness that affects many people who spend time on boats or other watercraft. It is caused by a discrepancy between what the eyes see and what the inner ear senses, resulting in a sense of disorientation and nausea. Symptoms of seasickness include dizziness, sweating, vomiting, and fatigue, which can last for hours or even days.

The causes of seasickness can vary from person to person, but some common triggers include rough seas, sudden movements of the boat, and strong odors. Certain individuals may be more prone to seasickness than others, including those with a history of motion sickness, women who are pregnant, and people who are susceptible to anxiety or stress.

It is important to note that just because someone has experienced seasickness in the past, it does not mean they will necessarily get sick every time they go out on the water. However, it is essential to be aware of the risk and take steps to prevent or alleviate seasickness symptoms to ensure an enjoyable and safe kayaking experience.

How Kayaking Affects Seasickness

Kayaking is a popular water activity that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and skill levels. However, being out on the water for an extended period of time can cause some people to experience seasickness. The motion of the water and the movement of the kayak can cause an imbalance in the inner ear, which can result in nausea, dizziness, and vomiting.

When kayaking, there are several factors that could increase your risk of getting seasick. One of these factors is the type of water conditions. If the water is choppy or there are waves, the kayak will move around more, which can make it more difficult to maintain balance. Another factor is the speed of the kayak. If the kayak is moving too quickly or making sudden movements, it can increase the chances of getting seasick.

It's worth noting that kayaking is not the only water activity that can cause seasickness. Other activities such as boating, sailing, and surfing can also cause similar symptoms. However, kayaking is generally considered to be a low-impact water activity, which can reduce the risk of getting seasick.

To reduce the chances of getting seasick while kayaking, it's important to be aware of these factors and take steps to prevent them. For example, choosing a calm and sheltered location for kayaking can help reduce the impact of waves and choppy waters. Maintaining a steady pace and avoiding sudden movements can also help keep the kayak stable and reduce the risk of seasickness.

Overall, while kayaking can increase the risk of seasickness, there are steps that can be taken to minimize this risk. By being aware of the factors that contribute to seasickness and taking steps to prevent them, kayaking can be a fun and enjoyable activity for people of all ages and skill levels.

Kayak in the Fiord
Photo by Kelsey Dody / Unsplash

Tips to Prevent Seasickness while Kayaking

Pre-Kayaking Preparation

Before heading out on your kayaking adventure, it's essential to prepare yourself properly to prevent seasickness. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. Choosing the Right Kayaking Location: Pick a location that is known for its calm waters and avoid areas that are known for strong currents or choppy waves. It's also a good idea to check the weather forecast before you go out to avoid any rough conditions.
  2. Staying hydrated: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your kayaking trip. Dehydration can make seasickness worse, so it's crucial to stay hydrated.
  3. Getting Adequate Rest: Being well-rested before your kayaking trip can help prevent seasickness. Try to get a good night's sleep the night before and avoid alcohol or any substances that could affect your sleep.

By following these pre-kayaking preparation tips, you can reduce your risk of experiencing seasickness while kayaking. Remember to always put your safety first and never push yourself beyond your limits.

Kayaking Techniques

When it comes to preventing seasickness while kayaking, there are several techniques that can help you stay calm and steady on the water. Here are some kayaking techniques to try:

  1. Maintain Proper Breathing: Deep breathing can help you stay calm and relaxed, which can prevent seasickness. Try to take slow, deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. You can also try counting your breaths to help you stay focused.
  2. Stay Calm: Anxiety and stress can make seasickness worse, so it's important to stay calm and relaxed. Remind yourself that seasickness is a common condition and that it will pass. If you start to feel uneasy, take a break from paddling and focus on your breathing.
  3. Focus on a Fixed Point: If you feel yourself getting dizzy or disoriented, try to focus on a fixed point on the horizon. This can be a tree, a building, or any other stationary object. By keeping your gaze fixed on this point, you'll help your brain adjust to the movement of the water.

By using these kayaking techniques, you can reduce your risk of getting seasick while on the water. Remember to take it slow, stay calm, and enjoy the scenery around you.

Post-Kayaking Care

After kayaking, it's important to take good care of yourself to minimize any effects of seasickness. Here are some tips to help you recover:

  1. Resting and Rehydrating: Resting and drinking plenty of water after kayaking can help your body recover and prevent dehydration, which can worsen seasickness symptoms.
  2. Eating Light and Healthy Meals: Eating light and healthy meals after kayaking can also help you feel better. Avoiding greasy, fatty, or heavy foods is recommended, as they can be hard to digest and trigger seasickness symptoms.
  3. Avoiding Certain Activities: After kayaking, it's best to avoid certain activities that can trigger or worsen seasickness. This includes anything involving lots of motion.

By following these post-kayaking care tips, you can help your body recover and prevent seasickness or minimize its effects.

Remember, seasickness is common and can happen to anyone. Don't let the possibility of seasickness stop you from enjoying kayaking and all the amazing experiences it can offer!


In conclusion, kayaking is a wonderful outdoor activity that provides an opportunity to connect with nature and explore beautiful waterways. While some people may be prone to seasickness, it is not a reason to avoid kayaking altogether. By understanding the causes of seasickness and implementing the tips provided in this article, you can prevent or alleviate seasickness symptoms and fully enjoy your kayaking experience.

Remember to choose the right kayaking location, stay hydrated, and get adequate rest before your kayaking adventure. Once on the water, maintain proper breathing, and stay calm. After kayaking, take care of yourself by resting, rehydrating, eating light and healthy meals, and avoiding certain activities.

If you're still unsure about trying kayaking due to seasickness, start with short trips close to shore and gradually increase your distance and duration. With a little patience and practice, you may find that you can enjoy kayaking without getting seasick.

In summary, don't let seasickness hold you back from trying kayaking. Follow these tips and have fun exploring the beautiful waterways in your area.