The Best Yoga Paddle Boards (SUP’s) – Walk on Water!

yoga SUPTo call yoga a new trend would be incorrect, the art has been practiced for thousands of years. That said, in recent years, we’ve seen a resurgence and yoga has become recognized for the amazing benefits it can have on your strength, flexibility and health, both physical and mental. People from all walks of life are trying out yoga and many people are doing so on the water via a paddle board or SUP. In this article, we look at the best paddle boards for yoga, for beginners and experts who want to buy a new SUP to take out on the water.

There are many reasons for practicing yoga on a lake or other body of water. For one, it creates more of a challenge. Naturally, water is going to be less stable than dry land, and so gives you a chance to hone your balance and other yoga skills. As well as that, the environment is very peaceful, and one of the reasons a lot of us try yoga is to get away from the rest of the world and enjoy some tranquility. Being out in the water and at one with nature is good for the brain as well as the body, and the challenge of yoga on the sea is one more and more of us are starting to attempt.

As with any SUP, there are some choices out there to make, and criteria that make certain boards the best for yoga. What is the correct choice for one person may not be so for another, and your individual needs are something to consider when looking at paddle board reviews, checking out the features and deciding if one is right for you. Our list of the best boards has looked not only at features, but at prices too. If you need a beginner SUP for yoga or are on a budget, you’re probably going to want a good cheap SUP, so we have included something for all budgets and sizes.

As a short aside, you might have heard the term BOGA used to describe ‘boot camp yoga’ which incorporates the use of yoga on stand up paddle boards. The criteria are exactly the same, and the best boards for BOGA are the same models mentioned below, of course. There is no difference in the SUP part of boot camp!

If you need any more convincing about the amazing benefits of this hobby, the huffington post have made an amazing article exploring some of the benefits!

ISLE Airtech Inflatable Yoga Stand Up Paddle Board

It is little surprise that a lot of the models we’ve looked at are made specifically for yoga, and the ISLE airtech inflatable yoga SUP has been designed exactly for the needs of yoga lovers. The company have been making products like this since 2004, and have really considered yoga when designing the board. Its wide nose and tail bring a lot of stability which means that it is not difficult to ride out and that it also stays relatively stable whilst performing your moves, poses and exercises. The last thing you want when trying out a new pose is a board that wobbles everywhere, and though SUP yoga will always test your balance, the ISLE airtech does a great job of giving some support under you.

One of many great things about this iSUP is the fact that it comes with everything you need. People just getting started on this journey are unlikely to have  huge amounts of SUP equipment and knowledge, especially if you’re just coming from a yoga background. This has an inflatable paddle, accessories bundle and even a travel bag. Which leads me nicely to the next benefit of the ISLE iSUP, the portability. Of course, it is inflatable, so can easily be thrown in the car and taken to a lake or to the sea. Not having to worry about a roof rack or difficulties taking your paddle board to your destination is definitely a plus point.

This board is also great for paddlers of all different shapes and sizes. It can handle weights of up to 255 lb but the manufacturers also say that some riders who exceed this may still be fine if they are experienced. Is this the cheapest yoga SUP? Absolutely not, you will have to part with a bit of money to get your hands on the ISLE Airtech iSUP, but if you want something that is an all in one solution, that is well made, durable and stable then look no further. You get all of the accessories you could possibly need and are ready to go as soon as your SUP is in your hands, and there is even a money back guarantee if you find anything is not to your liking. Deserves its place on our ‘best of’ list.

Ten Toes Board Emporium Weekender Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board

On the whole, paddle boards aren’t the cheapest product, but the Emporium Weekender is on the more affordable end of the scale, making them a good choice for those on a budget, and offers excellent value for money. It is another inflatable model which makes it a top choice for portability. This is a 10′ model, and ten toes have products which are bigger, great for gliding and touring, or smaller, which won’t be big enough for yoga.

The Ten Toes weekender comes with an adjustable paddle, easy to use carry case and even has a one year warranty. Rolled up, this SUP is just 11″ x 36″, so it is easy to see why people opt for an inflatable model in order to make the storage and transportation so much easier. In terms of its durability, this is described as ‘virtually indestructible’ by the manufacturer. It would take more than a little wear and tear for anything to happen to this paddleboard, especially if being used for yoga and standard paddling. This will last many years, and considering the fact that this is already cheaper than many of its competitors on the market, the value for money offered by the Emporium Weekender is excellent. The maximum rider weight is 275lb meaning that even those with a larger frame can use it safely and with no fear of running into troubles.

A quick look at the ten toes weekender reviews on amazon or elsewhere will show that the vast majority of people who have taken the plunge and bought the Weekender ISUP are very happy with their buy, and a huge amount of five star reviews show that this is definitely one of the best options for yoga enthusiasts.

Lotus YSUP Inflatable SUP Board

We’re completing our list with another very high quality inflatable board. To be honest, it was hard to find any boards that aren’t inflatable and are designed to be used specifically for yoga, and that is understandable, the pros of a board being inflatable, especially for a hobbyist, outweigh the cons.

The Lotus YSUP is an exceptionally crafted, luxury SUP board with a huge amount of positive reviews online. Most people who have used the board seem to be exceptionally happy with it, and a huge amount of five star reviews suggest that in spite of being a bit more pricy than some of the other SUPs on the market, the Lotus hits the nail on the head.

This board has a thick, six inch covering material which is designed for yoga sessions, they’ve made sure they don’t have a carrier handle in the center of the board which would inevitably get in the way, so they’ve considered the needs you will have for a productive yoga session. A shoulder strap is the alternative and keeps it easy to carry.

Yoga SUP Accessories

There are many accessories out there that can make your life easier, too. Whether you already have a board or are buying one for the first time, many accessories are worth considering. Of course, there is some obvious equipment such as the SUP paddle, any storage accessories you may need and a carry bag if you’ve gone for an inflatable model, but we’ve put together some of the more specific yoga accessories.

Surfstow Paddle Board Mat

A paddle board mat can help to convert an ordinary SUP into something a bit more suitable for yoga. Slipping can be a big issue with many paddle boards, and having a good quality mat over the top can make things a lot easier for you. It simply attaches with a suction system and is very good at staying put once it is on there. If you have a specific yoga SUP then this may be overkill, but if not, it could just become your best friend.

Paddleboard Anchor

There are a number of anchors available, and they can help greatly with the stability on offer. Of course, you have to balance (no pun intended) a need for an anchor with a need to take something out on the water, a huge anchor isn’t going to work, but many of the anchors you can buy are just a couple of lbs in weight, and are easily portable, yet are able to grip in many conditions that can help to keep your paddleboard in one place.

Conclusion

This is a hobby that can have huge benefits, and there are a lot of reasons why it is growing at a rapid rate. Doing some research up front and exploring the best products for SUP yoga can be very beneficial in the long term, and ensure it is something you stick to for the long term.

Keep it Dry – The 4 Best Dry Bags for Kayaks, Boating, Surfing and More

kayak dry bagDry bags have always been an important piece of kit for those of us who take part in any sort of water sport. If there is any chance of coming into contact with water, then you need one of the best dry bags to ensure that the contents don’t get wet, or worse, damaged. Our devices have become an integral part of everyday life. The chances are, you’ll want to take something electronic, whether that is a specific water sports device such as a fishfinder to take out on the sea, or is just something as simple (but important) as a cell phone. Whether you need a dry bag for fishing, kayaking, boating or scuba diving, we have some options included within this article.

Choosing a Dry Bag

The process certainly isn’t as simple as just grabbing the first dry bag you see. There are a lot of things to consider when it comes to buying a dry bag. Your own individual needs are vital, too. Giving a little thought to the circumstances in which the bag will be used can help you make the right call. There are certain criteria by which we judge the best models of backpack or waterproof bag.

Material. The material that a dry bag is made of is key to its effectiveness. The two most common types of material we see are vinyl and nylon. Vinyl tends to be used for smaller items and holders for devices such as phones and tablets, though some of the bigger models are vinyl. Nylon is the most popular, as well as being lighter weight and very durable. The density of the nylon can be measured so if you need a tougher bag you can judge by the “D” value in the description of the bag.

Size. Naturally, as with any bag, you need to think about the size you need before buying. You may just need to take a few items out and can get a five liter bag or smaller, or you may need to think about the best option for sleeping bags, changes of clothing and more. Dry bags come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, with 20 liter, 30 liter, or even 40 liter models not uncommon.

Durability. Most of us expect these items to get beat up a little when we take them out with us. Nobody goes on a kayaking trip without expecting to take a few bumps. The bags all need to be pretty durable in order to make sure they don’t rip and expose whats inside or not give enough protection to the contents.

Straps: Dry bags vary a great deal in which type of straps they have. You can have a duffel type which goes over the shoulder, or backpack straps, and some even have replaceable or changeable straps. As more companies innovate, more types of strap become available and the one to suit your needs is easier to find.

D-Rings: This is one of the more unique features we see over and over again in dry bags. D-rings are of course a D shape and are attached to the bag, they then make it easy to string the boats up either to the side of a boat or elsewhere. This makes it a lot easier if a boat or kayak should capsize, and will be easy to grab the bags rather than looking around in the water for them.

So, the criteria have been set out. Time for a dry bag review or three!

Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag

The first review is a dry bag that has truly taken the market by storm, and received endorsements from some really big names. The Earth Pak brand has a lot to offer, and seem to have thought of everything in designing their waterproof dry bag.

Features of the Dry Bag Include:

  • Durability and protection. These are designed to be waterproof even in the most testing conditions, and are built to last for a long time.
  • A single shoulder strap design, adjustable from 24-42 inches. They also come with backpack style straps and a sternum strap.
  • Comes with a certified waterproof phone case designed to fit pretty much any phone you can imagine. They work with phones up to 6.5 inches in size.
  • Available in sizes including 10L, 20L, 30L and even a massive 40L, one of the biggest dry bags you can imagine.
  • Comes with sturdy D-rings for strapping to the side of boats or elsewhere.
  • A roll top and buckle closure system means this is totally air tight and water tight.
  • Padded shoulder straps for your comfort.
  • Can even be used as a camping pillow and are designed to be comfortable when used as such.

The Earth Pak team have really thought of everything when it comes to these dry bags, and in our opinion they are definitely worth considering. The fact that they come in different sizes means they fit a variety of needs including fishing, kayaking and more. Convenient, durable, flexible and easy to use, it is easy to see why these have become one of the most popular models.

You don’t just have to take our word for it, either. The vast majority of reviews on amazon and elsewhere on the internet are not just positive, but glowing. Not only are these such high quality, they are good value too. The price is far from extortionate, especially when you consider the fact they are built to last years rather than months.

Odyssey Waterproof Dry Bag

Another good option for fishing, camping or other outdoor or watersport activities. The Odyssey waterproof dry bag also comes with a phone container to keep your smartphone from damage, and has some similar features to the Earth Pak.

These are made of 500D PVC, in their words “the toughest waterproof material known to man”. There’s little denying that these bags are protective and they even have heat resistant, stain resistant and temperature resistant qualities. It is almost impossible to tear and easy to lead, with easy to use straps. A cheap option perhaps, these certainly don’t cost the earth, and though the only model we’ve seen is a 10l, this is a good option for those who don’t need massive capacity.

Såk Gear Premium Waterproof Dry Bag

Okay, so looks certainly aren’t the priority, and they’re not something we are judging the top dry bags on. However, if you do want something that stands out a bit in terms of aesthetics, the Såk gear waterproof dry bag could be for you. It has a reflective trim for high visibility, very cool branding, and is available in loads of different colors. This has a functional benefit too, if more than one of you are buying the bag, you can ensure you have different designs to not get them mixed up.

Besides the awesome look and feel of this dry bag, the features are good too.

  • Available in both 10l and 20l sizes
  • Protective in all sorts of weather and immensely strong material to ensure it is watertight to keep your equipment and clothing dry.
  • An outer pocket for quick access items such as identification or money.
  • Reflective to help with visibility, good for not only whoever is wearing it, but for finding it should it go overboard.
  • Removable shoulder strap. Choose whether you want to put it over your shoulder or just use the attached handle.

Best Small Dry Bag

Binmer Sports Waterproof Dry Bag

We wanted to include a smaller option within our list of top dry bags. The Binmer is available in multiple sizes, but they tend to be a little smaller, and perfect for day trips and those who don’t need to carry a lot of stuff.

This comes in 2 liter, 5 liter and 10 liter sizes. It may not have all the features of some of the models already mentioned above, however it is a decent option, especially if you want something small. The PVC material is pretty durable, and though this may not be the most professional, all singing, all dancing model some of us need, for a beginner or hobbyist who just wants to take a few items out with them then this might fit the bill. The Binmer dry bag reviews elsewhere online are pretty positive, and it is worth a look.

Conclusion

We all want our dry bags for different reasons. People from motorcyclists to fishermen, swimmers to surfers and kayakers all have some need for a dry bag. As such, there isn’t a “one size fits all” solution. This article is designed to be a guide, and assist in working out which is the best for you, and all of the models of waterproof dry bag mentioned are commendable. If we had to pick one ‘best’ option, the Earth Pak brand fits the bill in so many ways, and the brand have thought of everything.

Choosing a dry bag can be an important choice, and can save a lot of hassle and even expense in the long run by preventing damage to your treasured items.

 

Cover it Up! 5 of the Best Boat Covers

boat coversUsing a cover for your boat is one of the best ways you can delay the natural effects of wear and tear on your pride and joy; your boat. On a daily basis, your boat is likely affected by a cycle of temperature and condition changes as the weather and even time of day changes. This daily routine often leads to expansion and contraction which is not the best for wood and takes a toll on the gel coating and wooden materials from which the majority of boats are made. Covers are useful for protection from the air, pollution, dirt, rodents, birds, adverse weather, and just about any of the situations that could risk the condition of a boat that you have probably paid a lot of money for.

Of course, investing in a good boat cover isn’t likely to be a bad idea given the important role it plays in protecting your boat from fading or becoming damaged. However, there is another benefit often overlooked. A boat cover can also be useful for the covering of valuable equipment you may keep on board, and that may not be easy to remove.

There are many different types and designs of boat, and this is something to consider when you are taking the plunge and buying a cover for your boat. Fortunately, the covers are quite flexible. Some of the types of boat you can get specific covers for include:

  • V-Hull Boats
  • Runabout Boats
  • Tri-Hull Boats
  • Fishing Boats
  • Bass Boats
  • Ski Boats

In order for you to have a better understanding of why it is so wise to invest in the best boat covers you can for your boat, we share with you some of the benefits of boat covers, what makes a quality boat cover, and even a selection of individual reviews of the top covers you can currently find for all different sorts of boats.

The Many Benefits of Boat Covers

The following are some of the benefits you will get from investing in a boat cover.

  • Protects your boat: Cover boats provide good protection for your anchored boat, at the dock or when stored on a trailer. There are different types of cover for different scenarios (more on this later).
  • Makes your boat durable: Covering your boats helps to mimimize the risk of damage from natural conditions such as the weather, rodents and other animals.
  • It protects your equipment: Cover boats protect the equipment within from prying eyes. Out of site, they say, is out of mind.

What Makes a Good Boat Cover? Our Criteria

Boat covers come with different materials and in different shapes and sizes too. It is easy to think that a cover is a cover, but this is not the case, and there are other variations. So, to choose the best boat cover for your boat, you need to be armed with the right information as to what makes the right cover boat for your individual needs. The following are some of the factors you should look for when next you’re shopping for a boat cover.

Storage vs. Trailer: These are two main types of cover. Storage covers fit the boat with a bit of give and aren’t the most tight or ‘custom’ fitting covers. They’re often more like a tarp or canopy that can quickly cover a boat while it is moored or stored somewhere. A trailer cover, as the name suggests, has been made for protecting the boat whilst it is being transported so will be hard wearing and more tight-fitting to the boat.

Materials: The material with which a boat cover is made is truly vital to determining its usefulness. The fabrics of your boat cover must be of the right combination in order to ensure that there is some ventilation as well as water repellency to stop the rain getting in. You may think that boats can handle water, and though the exterior is designed to handle water, the materials in the inside (the area being covered) are often not waterproof. A top-quality synthetic fabric is often used, great for durability and functionality.

Colors: Dark color materials are most suitable for a boat cover due to the fact that they provide great UV resistance from the sun and in turn contribute to boat longevity.

Size: Buying the right size of boat cover is also important when shopping for one. An oversized boat cover will sag under the weight of rain water, which collects and can be very awkward. Oversized covers can also get damaged when under serious windy conditions. On the other hand, if the boat cover is too tight, the seams and fabric could be stretched and are prone to tearing.

Reviews

In order to help you make an informed decision when choosing your boat cover, we have selected some of the top boat covers for you. Read on to see our review of these products.

RockyMRanger Heavy Duty Boat Cover

The RockyMRanger is one in a large range of covers for all sorts of products from BBQs to boats. This is a trailer design cover so can be used when you’re transporting your boat from A to B. The brand is known for its durability and some very positive reviews elsewhere on the internet back this up. as it is between 17′ and 19′ it has been a popular choice for sports and fishing boats and can cover a motor too. 8 hard wearing straps and one extra long strap as well as an elasticated bottom for the cover mean that you can adjust it and wrap it closely to the boat and avoid any issues with it coming loose.

Budge 600 Denier Boat Cover

The Budge 600 boat cover is a larger sized boat cover suitable for the V-hull boat with a T-top or hard top and cabin. This boat cover comes in five different sizes so is suitable for a huge amount of boats all the way from 16′ up to 26′. It is UV protective and has a lot of straps and ties to closely attach it to your boat and avoid it coming loose. Great protection from all of life’s awkward enemies for boats!

Yescom 600D V-Hull Ski Boat Cover

The Yescom boat cover is a relatively affordable choice that is a good option if you’re on a budget. Easily attached to your boat with a lot of clips and of course it is UV protective. It is designed to be a sort of ‘middle ground’ which can be good for short term trailerable use (transporting) or longer term storage. It also comes in three different colors and has a convenient storage bag for when it isn’t in use.

Classic Accessories StormPro Boat Cover

The Classic Accessories StormPro is a heavy duty boat cover that has become a popular choice for bass boats and V boats. It comes with a pole, which stops the cover from sagging so water can build up. The StormPro has given a lot of thought to the weather (as the name suggests) so it doesn’t allow rain or snow to build up, good for trailer transport. Made with quality materials and this even has an amazing five year warranty so you can tell that the manufacturer has full faith in it.

Komo Heavy Duty Trailerable Boat Cover

The Komo model is another trailerable boat cover suitable for most mid-sized boats with a V Hull design. It comes with a carry bag. The Komo boat cover is double stitched with an elastic material making it fit your boat ideally. However, it also comes in a lot of different sizes so all boats from 12′ up to 24′ are likely to be compatible with some version of this cover. The low price is actually pretty surprising considering the quality and this is available in two colors as well as the aforementioned sizes. This has definitely earned its place on our list of the best boat covers.

Conclusion

No doubt, a boat cover provides both protective and maintenance functions for your boat. It also safeguards the rest of your boating equipment, thereby, helping you to save money in the long run. It isn’t the most glamorous aspect of boating, but it is an important one, and taking the time to pick a boat cover for your runabout, ski boat, fishing boat or other boat can be well worth it in the long run and make sure you don’t do any unnecessary damage.

What is Stand Up Paddleboarding? A Beginner’s Guide

ocean-1804114_640Many have described stand up paddleboards or ‘SUPs’ as the fastest growing trend in the world of water sports. Considering the fact that if you saw somebody stand on a board and start to paddle 20 years ago you probably would have been more than a bit confused, the sport has become pretty mainstream.

Legend has it that Hawaiian surfer Laird Hamilton in the 90s started paddling with a canoe paddle on his biggest surfboard to try and bulk up for big waves. He found it to be great exercise and it stuck. While this is likely one of the reasons it is so popular today, SUP’s of some form have been used in Hawaii, South America and Africa for thousands of years. Hawaiians describe it as Hoe He’e Nalu, a term you’re likely to hear if you visit the surfing hotspot.

So why has it caught on so much? Well, as already briefly mentioned, it is great exercise for a few different reasons. As well as the balance and weight distribution in your legs, your upper body gets a workout whilst propelling you across the water. Paddle boarding is a great way to vary what you’re doing on the water and give different muscles a workout. On top of this, it isn’t the most intimidating of board sports. If you look at a surfer or skimboarder for instance it can be intimidating, and a huge amount of skill is required to reach the top level. Paddleboarding isn’t easy as such, but it is more simple to pick up the basics and start to propel yourself along.

So You Want to Start Paddleboarding

There are so many places you can get started with your SUP adventure. Choose a lake, river or coast with pretty tame waters for your first trip and make sure it isn’t too windy. There are a few pieces of equipment you absolutely need to start off. These can sometimes be rented from water sports stores but buying a beginner model doesn’t have to cost the earth and if you plan to head out regularly it can be well worth it.

  • The Board – you need a board, and a suitable one for your size. Some boards come in multiple sizes, and all will tell you how big they are before you buy it, the bigger the board, generally the more stability you will have.
  • Paddle – you need a paddle to propel yourself, this will sometimes come as part of a set with the board. They can be made of fiberglass or metal materials.
  • Leash – this is vital and will ensure that the paddle doesn’t get lost! If you drop it in the water it can be hard to ever get back, and you don’t want to make a habit of losing your paddles.
  • Life Jacket or Life Vest – as always with any water sport, you have to take the adequate safety precautions.

Tips for SUP Beginners

  • Keep an eye on the weather. There is nothing worse than finding yourself on the water in a storm or windy conditions if you’re not yet comfortable on your board. Be sure that you stay in calm waters.
  • Face the right way. It sounds a bit rudimental but some beginners get confused which way to stand. The narrower ‘nose’ of the board should face the way you want to go, this is the front of the board.
  • Long strokes, hold the top of the paddle. If you hold it at the bottom or like a broom you’re not going to get the most of the propulsion your body can create.
  • Don’t rely on your arms. Most of the ‘heavy lifting’ should be done by your back. Ensuring you stay upright and looking forward rather than looking down will help this.
  • Fall away from the board. If you fall on the board or manage to get it to fall on you, it hurts. If you feel yourself going, jump away from the board and fall straight into the water.

Conclusion

As well as being amazing fun, going out on an SUP can be an amazing exercise, and it is no wonder this is a hobby which is catching on as being one of the most popular water sports. It is an accessible sport and one you can get started with pretty simply. Follow our basic tips and have an amazing time on your board!

Plug Those Lugs – The Best Earplugs for Swimming

earplugsIf you enjoy swimming or other water activities and sports, it is inevitable that at some point you will want to think about your ears, and if you need swimming earplugs to block out the water. There are numerous reasons why you might want to do this. You may be looking for peace and quiet, but it is more likely that you are worried about swimmers ear, which can be a real source of pain for those of us who love to swim. A lot of people don’t like the sensation of water in their ears, and use plugs to try and avoid this. Whatever your reasons, we’ve compiled a list of the best earplugs for swimming to ensure you get something you are happy with and that suits your own needs.

Whether you are looking for yourself, or need the best ear plugs for kids, we’ve got something suitable on our list.

Insta-Putty

Insta-Putty is a very good brand of ear plugs and is designed to be used for all sorts of water uses, even showering and bathing, but of course swimming and watersports are the priority. It is great for reducing noise in a lot of different circumstances but for swimming use they do a great job of keeping the water out, especially considering how flexible they are, molding to the shape of your ear.

They are marketed as reusable, but eventually they will get dirty (never a good idea to put something dirty in your ear) or will lose its flexibility and not stay in place. This is perhaps the reason why they’re sold in such big quantities.

As you’d expect, they’re non-toxic and hypoallergenic so you have some peace of mind regarding your ear health. They don’t specifically have to be used for swimming, but are a great choice for water uses due to their reliability, flexibility and comfort. The vast majority of reviews are very positive with people complimenting how hard-wearing the earplugs are. They may not be the nicest looking product ever, but they’re great quality.

Speedo Ergo Ear Plugs

Speedo is a brand synonymous with swimming and swimwear, so it is only right that they continue the heritage of their products with a range of ear plugs. The Ergo (presumably short for ergonomic) earplugs, live up to their name, with a very comfortable design which slips in easily and conforms to the shape of your ears. The snug fit also ensures that water is properly blocked out and that any noise is reduced too.

These come with a branded Speedo box for storage and ensuring that it doesn’t get dirty or damaged, and can be bought alone or as multiples in order to make sure you have spares. The Speedo Ergo is designed to be reusable, and is a lot more reusable than a lot of its competitors, but whatever earplugs you buy, they probably wont last for years. These are well reviewed and provide a lot of quality, as we’ve come to expect from the Speedo brand.

Macks Soft Flanged Aqua Block Earplug

Macks are another manufacturer who provide a lot of earplugs for swimming. As well as being some of the cheapest earplugs they also offer a lot of quality, and the main benefit of the Soft Flanged Aqua Blog is the amazing comfort. To look at this product you would probably think it looks anything but comfortable, but the three flange design is incredibly comfortable as well as effective, triple the protection!

  • Wonderful for preventing swimmers ear and surfers ear
  • Cn be used for swimming, water sports and even swimming and showering.
  • The pre-molded earplugs are made of soft, comfy silicone which fit in with ease.
  • Designed to increase sealing and comfort with the triple flange style.

Macks offer other earplugs too, but these are perhaps their best for swimming and strike the perfect balance between comfort and effectiveness. Without getting a custom fitting product you’ll be hard pressed to find something much better, especially at the price range. A huge amount of positive Macks earplug reviews show you all you need to know.

Docs Proplugs Medical Grade Ear Plugs

A lot of the ‘basic’ ear plugs are designed as one size fits all and do a basic job of keeping the water out, which may be all you need, but these are designed to be ‘medical grade’ and are great for those already suffering with swimmer’s ear, infections or other issues.

One of the other key features is the fact that you can buy multiple sizes, this allows you to find the perfect fit and maximum comfort. For this reason, I consider these to be the best swimming earplugs for kids, and the ‘tiny’ and ‘x-small’ sizes are great for little people and adults alike!

The promotional material for this product states that they’re recommended by ENT medical professionals as a preventative measure and for those already suffering with ailments relating to the ear or sinuses. The reviews of this product are generally immensely positive about the features including comfort and effectiveness at keeping the water out of your ears even if you have existing issues.

Decibullz – NRR 31 Custom Molded Earplugs

Custom molded earplugs such as the NRR31 from Decibullz are something of a ‘holy grail’ in terms of earplugs. As such, the cost is definitely more, as you are paying a premium for the personalized nature of the product, but if you can afford it, the extra cost is easily justified.

Immersed in hot water, the Decibullz become pliable and allow you to mould them to shape. Simply put them into your ears firmly and allow them to adopt the correct shape and size. As well as this, they’re re-moldable, so if you need to alter them it is easy to do.

They’re designed to cut audio volumes by 31 dB, which is excellent if you want to isolate the noise, but in terms of their merits for swimming, the excellence comes from how effective the perfect size and shape can be for stopping the water from entering your ears.

They are very unlikely to fall out or be uncomfortable, and if this does become an issue you can just mold them again to make sure they are perfect. A huge amount of five star reviews show how happy people are with the noise reduction and watertight properties of the NRR31 from Decibullz. If you want something you can mold yourself at home that will be more effective than the generic earplugs, these come with our recommendation.

What Makes a Good Earplug for Swimmers?

So, as you can see from the above models, there are certain criteria that ensure that a set of earplugs is good quality and appropriate for swimmers. If you simply search for ‘earplugs’ online you’ll likely be met with a lot of models made of foam and other materials that aren’t appropriate, so you need to get something that is watertight such as silicone. The trade off here is that it can sometimes be less comfortable, which brands have tried to tackle with the ergonomic design, alternative sizes and flexibility of their products, and in doing so have made some great options.

Ease of use – Some earplugs are much easier than others. Is the insertion a simple process? Can you quickly make sure that they’re comfortable before swimming? The best earplugs will not take up a lot of time before you take to the water.

Effectiveness – This is one of the more obvious ones, but they’ve got to do the job properly. There’s no point in earplugs that don’t keep the water out, or that fall out when you’re diving or taking part in watersports.

Moldable and Customizable – Being able to mold them to your own ears is the best case scenario. The cost is more, but for obvious reasons they are more effective, and having them perfectly snug within your ears is great for comfort, plus minimizes the chance of any water sneaking through.

Reviews – As with most products, there are some options on the market that aren’t the best. Luckily, we live in an age of product reviews and recommendations and it doesn’t take long to investigate and work out which products are not the best quality.

Avoiding Swimmer’s Ear

Swimmer’s ear is a very unpleasant ailment, and is the reason a lot of people will be looking for ear plugs. It stems from water remaining in the ear after you’ve been swimming or in the water for another reason, which makes bacterial growth easier and leads to infections. It can be very painful and irritating.

The inside of your ear is not an easy place to dry, so the only measures you can really take are preventative, and the way to avoid it is to make sure you have an effective set of plugs that keep the water out well. Custom plugs are amazing for this, but many of the standard models will do a good job too.

Conclusion

There are multiple reasons people buy ear plugs, and even multiple reasons to have them whilst swimming, but it is generally accepted that they are a pretty good idea, and if you are frequently in the water, we would definitely recommend owning some. You don’t have to spend a huge amount of money, with many earplugs available under $50 or even under $20 that will do a fine job, and some of the more disposable models are just a few bucks. The recommended models within this article are well reviewed, and you should quickly be able to work out which are best for you.

Choosing the Best Skimboard for You – Skimboard Buying Guide

skim-board-1830034_640 Skimboarding is taking the world of watersports by storm. It is similar to surfing but the boards are smaller and a bit more nimble, and designed for use in shallow water. With the best skimboard, you can do a load of incredible tricks, and use your board at the beach or other bodies of water such as rivers. Skimboards can also go along wet sand at beaches and you can build up a lot of speed, great for tricks and for the rush you get from most types of watersport. One of the main benefits of skimboarding is that it is pretty cheap to get started, the skimboards themselves aren’t the most expensive items, especially when compared to surf boards, and though the hobby takes a bit of getting the hang of, it can be so rewarding and fun.

As Skimboarding continues to grow and more people find out about the sport, more manufacturers are creating products! Skimboard reviews used to be hard to come by, but now it is relatively simple to make a list of the best skim boards, and to compare the features of each brand. The features of each skimboard will be appropriate for different people depending on your size and speed, so the model best for one person may not be the best for someone else. The best skimboards for beginners may not be the best for a more advanced boarder. We’ve created a handy buying guide and some skimboard reviews to make sure you pick the best for you.

Considerations

Tempting as it may be to find a recommended model of skimboard and just go for it, you’re a lot better off thinking it through first, and even doing a small amount of research on the types of skimboard out there. Giving some thought to the below considerations will ensure you’re making the right choice.

Size – The boards generally are somewhere between 45 and 60 inches in height, and 17 and 23 inches wide. Which one you choose depends on how big you are, and how you plan to ride it! When finding the right height, as a general rule of thumb, it should come up to your chest when held out in front of you. If you’re not in a store and are buying online, you can quickly measure how long this is. The width and thickness are decisions you should make largely based on your level experience and how you plan to ride it. If you can handle a thinner board with less thickness in the material then you may be able to move very freely, but if you’re a beginner then this may not be advisable whilst you are finding your feet.

The following should help as a reference based on what you weigh, but can slightly vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Don’t panic, as when you choose a skimboard to buy it will tell you the recommended size of the rider.

  • 80 – 140 lbs: 45″ or below (Small)
  • 120 – 160 lbs: 45-47″ (M)
  • 140 – 180 lbs: 47-49″(M/L)
  • 160 – 200 lbs: 49-51″ (L)
  • 180 – 220 lbs: 51 and up (XL)

Foam vs Wood

The material which makes up the core of your skimboard will likely be foam or wood. Some other materials such as fiberglass can be used. Foam boards are a little more expensive than the wooden boards as they have more that goes into the process of making them. “Foamies” as they’re often called by watersport enthusiasts are made to skim across waves, and they’re incredibly light and flexible. This means that even if you use them a lot or in choppier waters then they are less likely to break or warp. Wooden boards can be good for stability if you are an absolute beginner, and of course are a cheaper option, some people prefer them for non-coastal waters or calmer currents. If, however, you think you will be using your board a lot, the foam or PVC materials are probably a better option due to its flexibility and durability. You’d be forgiven for thinking that the wooden model is more durable, but due to the fact it has no flex when pressure is applied, and will simply crack or break. Some skimboards are better than others at this.

The shape of a board is also something to think about. You’re likely to hear the term ‘rocker’ when it comes to skimboards and other types of surf boards, which is basically how much of a curvature the skimboard has. A lot of curve can make it easier to maneuver through the water and the sand, but it can also make the board slower. If you want something that will be quick across the water then a shallow curve or ‘rocker’ is probably the best option for you. Tails also have different shapes, some are square or ‘W’ shaped, which are great for flexibility. A ‘pintail’ shape is better for stability and allows you to keep steady and balanced in the water.

The “Wrap”

Having talked a little about the core of a board, it should be noted that there is also a ‘wrap’ around the outside. This material has an impact on how durable a board is and even how it performs. There are a few different wraps you’re likely to come across. E-Glass is a popular choice for the cheaper, lower end models, which is pretty flexible but also not unlikely to break. Carbon is the higher end choice and makes the board very strong, even when it comes up against waves, rocks, shells and the rest of the perils of the sea! Mid range boards tend to be S-Glass or Texilium, it is much stiffer than E-Glass but doesn’t have the speed of movement you get from carbon.

The Best Skimboard Brands

There are so many models of skimboard out there, but in reality most of them are made by three or four good quality brands. One of the best ways to go through the recommended models is to discuss each brand and what they have to offer.

Zap Skimboards

Zap are a very cool brand in the world of skimboards. They’re based in Florida where skimming and watersports happen all year! The build quality on these boards is excellent and you can tell just from holding one that love and care have been put into the design and manufacture. Most of their boards are made with a foam core and are renowned for flexibility, which is why a huge amount of them are used by the professional skimboarders and watersport enthusiasts, as you can see on their website.

Zap’s boards are made in the UK with quality at the forefront of their design morals, and it shows. The slogan ‘handmade in the USA’ is emblazoned with pride on their marketing material. They’ve got quite the following and even sell merchandise as well as skimboard bags.

Recommended models of Zap Skimboard:

Amp – Zap’s Amp skimboards are fast, very fast. If you’re serious about the sport and want something with some serious go across the water, this is a great option for you. It is quite a thin and streamlined model with 3/4 tapered rails allowing you both a lot of float and the ability to maneuver across the water. It is available in the bigger sizes you’re likely to see. 50, 52, 54 and 56 inch models.

Pufferfish – A much more forgiving model of skimboard. It is longer and wider than a lot of the models out there and allows you to balance with ease even in slightly choppier water. Comes in a 53 inch size which is great for most beginners and those who are back foot heavy on the board.

Zap Wedge – The manufacturer describes this as the ‘work horse’ of their skimboard lineup. It is amazing no matter what your ability and comes in three different sizes so you can find something suitable no matter what your size and style. Not only is this great for beginners, as your skills start to grow you won’t find yourself restricted by the Wedge. Strong, durable and pretty simple to get to grips with, the Wedge is an amazing skimboard and one of the most popular we’ve come across.

M5 – If you’re looking for a model that is great for professional use, the M5 has the perfect balance of speed, performance and durability and is designed to be used in a professional setting. It costs a little extra but the quality is evident.

Victoria Skimboards

Victoria describe themselves as ‘the original skimboard manufacturer’. They have been manufacturing from their base in California for over 40 years and have skimboards ranging from beginner models all the way up to pro models.

Grommet – The Grommet is designed for mainly smaller built users and beginners, a lot of younger people learn to skim on the Grommet board which is lightweight and flexible whilst also being durable. It is easy to stay on top of as well as having enough maneuvrability to start to learn tricks. There are five different sizes available so you can find something perfect for you, but the smaller models are definitely recommended for children and younger people to get to grips with skimming.

Bigfoot – If you have a larger build, then it can be hard to find a skimboard to use, but the problem has been addressed by Victoria who made the Bigfoot. In their words it is ‘designed to take a pounding’ and we’ve found it excellent for anyone who still wants to be able to skim but is well over 6 foot or even carrying a few extra pounds. The best skimboard for larger builds.

The Woody – The Woody has been manufactured for nearly 40 years now and is nothing short of iconic in the world of skimboards. As you might have guessed, it is made out of wood, but not just any wood, Russian Birch is used to ensure that this can take a beating and is less likely to warp or break than a lot of the lower priced wooden models you can find under $100. The Woody is an ‘all rounder’ and is good for people of all different shapes and sizes, as there are six different variations which accommodate little people (from 30 lbs) all the way up to 210 lb riders.

Budget Option – Wave Rebel Local Motion

Skimboards can cost a fair amount of money and if you’re a beginner you may want to find something that doesn’t cost the earth but can still get you started. Some beginners are looking for skimboards under $100 or even under $50, and this can sometimes be tough, though there are some wooden options available for a good price and allow you to learn the basics.

The Wave Rebel Local Motion is a board with a lot of good reviews, and while it doesn’t quite hold up to the standards of some of the elite and professional boards, it is a decent beginners option or board for the casual user.

The board is made of wood and has a slight curve, and is made with a very sturdy design, easier to stay on top of than some of the more advanced boards, and therefore great for beginners. The board has 35 inch, 40 inch and 45 inch sizes all of which have slightly different capacities.

Conclusion

Our guide is designed to help you to work out the ins and outs of finding an appropriate skimboard for your use, whether you are an absolute beginner or a pro. There is a board out there to suit everyone, from children to teenagers, small adults to larger builds, it is simply a case of finding which one will best suit your own body type and needs. If you have any experience with the boards mentioned above, or have another skimboard to mention, feel free to leave a comment below.

Skimboarding is one of the most thrilling watersports out there, and it is accessible and simple to get into. It can be made a lot more fun by choosing the right board for you!

Overcoming a Fear of Water for Swimming and Watersports

overcoming fear of waterWatersports and swimming are growing in popularity all the time. They’re great for your fitness, can be very refreshing and such great fun whether you’re alone or with others. Speaking as someone who has experienced fear of water in my younger years, I’ve put together a guide on how to overcome the feat of water and to make the most out of everything the water has to offer.

The science of our fears and where they come from is often hard to comprehend, but working out where your fear came from may be pretty simple, and can go a long way towards working out the method to conquer it. Many common causes of a fear of the water are listed below. Remember, it isn’t unnatural to be scared of it, and most of us at some point have some sort of trepidation.

  • If you have had a bad experience involving water, it is likely to have a big impact on how you view watersports and other activities involving scenarios where you can end up in the drink!
  • If you have been taught how to swim before, in school or otherwise, you may not have enjoyed it, and sometimes swimming teachers can be pushy, this can cause some anxieties about swimming later in life.
  • If you have grown up with parents who are scared of the water or who have an anxious nature, this may have been passed along to you, subconsciously or otherwise.
  • Biologically speaking, fear can just be inherent. The sea must be respected and can cause injury, so in the same way we may be scared of snakes, water can be a scary prospect.
  • It may not be the water itself, but what is underneath it that is worrying. This fear is more justified in some parts of the world than in others, and precautions should be taken.

As already mentioned briefly, there’s no shame in being a little afraid, and it is perfectly natural, but the truth is that if you let this affect how adept you are in the water, you could be at more risk should something happen. The safest way to take to the water is confidently, and having at least some basic skills could even save your life. Being comfortable underwater or at least in the water is important.

Here are some of our tips and exercises for getting more comfortable with the water

  • Head to the pool before the sea. As well as having lifeguards (many beaches will have this too) you will take a lot of the natural uncertainty out of the equation in a ‘controlled’ environment.
  • DON’T “jump in at the deep end” – this is a cliche, and not one that works. If you take it too fast then it will likely show and you will put yourself off. Go at your own pace and success is much more likely.
  • When it comes to submerging your face (something most of us struggle with) go a little bit at a time. Start with your mouth, then gradually nose, ears and eyes, each one has its own challenges as your senses get altered, and you don’t have to take them all on at once.
  • Start out where you have something to hold. Going into the middle of a pool is probably not the best idea. Whilst developing your skills, stay close to the edge of the pool where you can grab the sides if needed.
  • Go with a friend. This not only helps in terms of moral support, it also gives you the peace of mind of knowing should anything happen you have some help.
  • Practice floating. This is an unnatural thing at first, but humans are buoyant by their very nature, and if you’re not floating it is because you are resisting. Practice makes perfect.

When you’re learning to swim, getting used to being dunked in the water during surfing or other watersports, it is important to be safe at all times and not go out on your own. Taking it at your own pace is vital, and as the old saying goes, ‘don’t run before you can walk’. Be in the water as much as you can and get comfortable and confident at your own speed.

Four of the Best Bodyboards Plus Bodyboard Buying Guide

best bodyboard reviews and buying guideBodyboarding or ‘boogieboarding’ as it is sometimes called, is a fun, tough and rewarding water sport. It can trace its origins to hundreds of years ago but has become popular in the mainstream in the last 40 years or so. A bodyboard is a relatively simple concept, but finding the best bodyboard for your own needs can be the difference between surfing the waves with ease and ending up frustrated trying to pick up the hobby.

Bodyboard Basics

A bodyboard is a short square or rectangle made up of hydrodynamic foam, and tend to have a plastic bottom, as well as a softer top, also made of foam, this is known as the ‘deck’. The foam sides of the board are commonly referred to as the ‘rails’. Different models make these out of different materials and this can give the user of the board different levels of control and flexibility.

Modern bodyboards tend to have some sort of carbon or graphite rod within them, this is designed to make the board a little stronger and reduce the chances of it warping in shape. It also helps add speed and power to the user and give you more control on the waves you’re inevitably going to be surfing.

Boards tend to have different shapes and curvatures which will have an impact on how it feels to the user and the characteristics of the ride. If it is wider near to the nose then it is good for prone riding (with stomach fully on top of the board) and more of a narrow design at the nose is better suited to stand-up or drop-knee surfing as your body weight will be further back on the board.

As you can tell, there are a few technical terms involved, but they’re not overly complicated and are easy to get used to, especially if you’re already a surfer or know a little about bodyboarding. If you are a beginner, don’t worry, as our bodyboard reviews will talk you through the pros and cons of each model, and whether it is suitable for you.

The riding forms of a bodyboard are vital to understand. Check them out in the bodyboard wikipedia page for an understanding of how you can ride a bodyboard.

Buying Guide

Here is a quick run down of the inevitable considerations when it comes to buying your bodyboard, and the features to look out for when trying to find the most suitable board.

  • Size. This is vital, and your weight as well as your height should be considered when you are deciding. As a rough rule of thumb, the board should reach from your knees to your chin when you hold it. If you’re a bit heavier, then you should think about a wider bodyboard which will help you to float and ride with a lot more ease.
  • The Nose. This is the part at the front of the board as you lay forward on it, and it will have an impact on how you move across the water. A wide board will be 11-13 inches, great for prone riding. This is designed for stability, but if you are going to ride drop-knee then you will want something 10 inches or lower. Choosing something too wide can cost you a lot of your manoeuvrability, but if you go for something really narrow the control can be difficult to master. It basically depends how fast you want to move.
  • Your ability. This will make an impact on your buying choice, the best bodyboard for beginners is not going to be the same as that for a pro. As you get better, you will likely know which features you prefer and can sacrifice a bit of the stability for speed and flex.
  • Price. Finding the best cheap bodyboard or at least a good value for money bodyboard (under $100) will be high on the list for a lot of people. Price tends to play a part in the buying choice.

PE vs PP Bodyboards

These are two terms you’re likely to hear on your search for a bodyboard.

Extruded polyethylene (PE) is also sometimes referred to as Dow Core, but different chemical companies sometimes give it different names. They’re historically the most popular material of bodyboard, but as it has become an environmental concern and the strength has been compromised recently some people have turned to PP. PP is also a good choice for beginners. PP offers water resistance, durability and is very light.

There is no simple ‘best’ between PE and PP and different models of bodyboard make the most of different materials, so it is worth looking at the individual bodyboard reviews below to decipher which is the best for you.

Bodyboard Reviews: Counting Down the Best Models

Best Morey Body Boards:

Morey are a brand with a lot to offer in the world of bodyboards, and we have a few of their products on our ‘best of’ list. The story behind the company is awesome. From their own website:

“On July 7, 1971, the bodyboard was born. Tom Morey borrowed an electric carving knife and a household iron, whittled some scrap polyethylene foam into a small rectangular mat and covered it with newspaper. He trademarked the name and placed and placed an ad in surfing magazine. By 1977 he was producing 80,000 per year.”

Morey Cruiser 42.5″ Body Board

Designed as a full sized board which is great for those just starting out as well as intermediate and advanced users. The board has a crescent tail, a bottom skin with channels and a wrist leash to make sure it doesn’t slip off and go missing. They’ve built it to be used by riders who are 5’9 and up and who weigh somewhere between 160 and 185 lbs, but there are reviews where people larger and smaller have said that they use this board with no issues. 42.5 inches is a versatile size and can be used by a wide range of users.

Versatility is one of the positives of this board, and it offers a good middle ground where it gives plenty of buoyancy and stability whilst still being fast across the water and great for those who want to learn more and become more advanced bodyboarders. The Morey Cruiser gets the thumbs up from us, all at a pretty good price, too!

Morey Big KahunaThe Big Kahuna is a bit more of an intermediate to advanced version that can still be bought at a good price. It is 44 inches and this makes it great for slightly larger users and those with bigger builds. Extremely durable and in their own words this is designed to ride ‘hard and long’. Big Kahuna reviews are generally very positive and show what a reliable brand they have become. The features include:

  • 44″ design perfect is for people over 5’10″/185 lbs or more.
  • Strong carbon tube within the board provides a lot of strength and solidity.
  • PE (polyethylene) core, strong and suitable for both cold and warm water.
  • Crescent tail assists in your body positioning and gives a lot more control over the board.
  • Extremely durable and high quality whilst retaining quality.

662 Sixsixtwo Splash Bodyboard

The SixSixTwo splash board is made of high quality EPS foam with a slick bottom. The performance of this is very good, which is further helped by its crescent tail, which makes it a very manoeuvrable model of bodyboard which is very strong and stays water resistant in all sorts of conditions.

It has a leash to make sure that the board doesn’t slip off and can stay attached to you at all times, and there are fin tethers included which keep the fins in place. The bottom of this board is very fast and slick and lets you swoop across the water at some speed.

This model may not be the best choice for a 6 ft 5 bodybuilder, but it is great for children and those with a smaller frame. Its 36 inch design is amazing for those looking for a high quality small and flexible board which can give a lot of speed across the waves.

Bodyboard & Full Beach Pack by BPS

BPS is short for Bulletproof Surf, and the brand are making a name for themselves in lots of different areas of water sports. Their offering in terms of bodyboards is a ‘full beach pack’ with everything you need to get out on the water on your bodyboard.

This comes with an ultra-lite body board, which is available in multiple sizes (this is a real plus point and not something every bodyboard brand offers). It also has a leash and a set of tethers to keep your swim fins attached and ensure they don’t get lost at sea.

This is one of the cheapest bodyboards we’ve seen on offer and though it may not be as rugged and durable as some of the high end models, it is great for beginners and the fact that it comes as a set is a real positive. Perfect for families and hobbyists who want to try bodyboarding for the first time. It probably won’t be the fastest, but the lightweight, portable and easy to use board set is great value for money and a good starting point. It is also available in blue and pink, especially good if you’ve got kids and can let them choose their favorite color.

Conclusion

Once you get past a bit of the jargon and understand what criteria make up the best bodyboard it is relatively simple to pick the best one for your own needs. As you can see, the size and build of the user is going to play a big part in the decision. There are certain brands in the world of water sports we have come to love and trust, and in the bodyboard world this is no different, with Morey and BPS being among the best.

As we’ve alluded to, what is best for one person may not be best for someone else, and taking a little time to delve into individual bodyboard reviews and learn what you like when out on the water, as well as evaluating your own skills, can play a huge part in any buying decision you make.

Whether you call it bodyboarding or boogieboarding, this is a very rewarding and enjoyable sport that can help you enjoy the sea, stay fit and have a great time either alone or with family. Getting the right board is vital.

 

Five of the Best Fishing Pliers Reviewed

best fishing pliers reviewsA good fisherman knows that a successful fishing trip needs you to have more than just rods, lines, reels, and lures; there are also a number of handy little tools and new accessories that can make the whole process more convenient and efficient, and new technology is being created all the time. Every fisherman and woman is likely to at some point look into the necessary accessories to enjoy fishing to the highest degree and make their fishing more efficient (or should that be e-fish-ient?).

Fishing pliers, one of the most common tools is commonplace for almost every fisherman. Fishing pliers are not the same thing as ordinary pliers that you’d find in the home or in a toolkit somewhere. The most common use of a pair of these fish pliers is to remove the hooks that have ended up in fish, mostly used for those that have become stuck. It can reach far in a mouth and safely remove a hook without doing much harm so you can remain guilt free. A fisherman’s fishing pliers are often even equipped with other accessories such as line cutters and a blade, which come in super useful. Most fishing pliers are especially made to be really rust resistant, much moreso than ordinary pliers, this is partially due to how much they’re exposed to water.

The main criteria for the best fishing pliers is the materials they are made of. In certain types of water such as saltwater, corrosion can be a real issue, and many of the manufacturers have turned to materials that are designed not to rust and corrode, making sure you get value for money and long term use out of your pliers. The actual jaws and cutters are normally made out of stainless steel which provides a lot of strength and durability.

We live in an age of reviews and before buying a model you can check out fishing plier reviews to be able to see what both the experts and consumers who are already using the product have said, but the five models we’ve picked out in this article are all of the highest quality, and the reviews tend to back it up. We’ve also included reviews at multiple prices to ensure you’re getting something to suit your budget as well as good value for money.

There are many other tools out there that you can use in conjunction with your pliers and some are even sold as a set, getting a fishing kit can be a good way of saving money, just make sure that all of the tools are up to standard. You may even want multiple sizes of fishing pliers and some are sold as sets of two at different sizes, just like you’re likely to have spanners and other normal pliers at different sizes, you can do the same with your fishing equipment.

A line clipper is another handy accessory that comes with a lot of different tools. It is similar to nail clippers and is a clever tool to cut lines. Attach the clipper to a lanyard and wear it for ease of use, just grab it and go.

Another handy tool you’ll often find in the same package as the best fishing pliers is a lure retriever. Although some do not think of this tool as totally necessary, it is undeniably useful, especially when a lure gets stuck under one of the many objects that can hold you up such as a rock or a log.

A lot of the fishing accessories are relatively easy-to-find; most of them can be bought at a fishing store or even may be available in a sports shop. They don’t need to be expensive but can make a big difference to your fishing skills and success, and even save you money on lines you may otherwise lose or hooks you may break.

TOP FIVE FISHING PLIERS TOOLS

1. BITE FISHING TACKLE FISHING PLIER 2016
The Bite Fishing Tackle plier is one of the best fishing pliers on the market, making it extremely easy to cut even strong lines, it has Stainless Steel Jaws (which are even replaceable) and this is a hard wearing product which could well be the last aluminum fishing pliers you will ever need. In addition to being sturdy and hard-wearing it is made of a type of alloy that makes this resistant to rust and corrosion. Some of the other features include comfortable but effective grips that allow a great firm grip in even the most challenging situations.

2. MADBITE FISHING PLIER 2016
Madbite advertise their fishing plier as being made of aerospace grade aluminum. Another model with  corrosion resistance, it is designed for durability and use in all different kinds of water. This great fishing tool also comes with straight steel jaws and carbide cutters that give these fishing pliers a huge amount of cutting power to allow it to easily go through all sorts of fishing line, such as braided, mono line, fluorocarbon and other materials.

What I like most about this is the belt sheath which makes it really easy to attach to your belt while fishing and quickly grab it when you need to, no fiddling around in your bag. In addition to this it has a solid, hard anodized finish in three colors with ergonomic handles. Suitable for freshwater and saltwater fishing and also is compact and simple for anyone to carry it in any hard or soft fishing tackle box. This is another great fishing tool that I recommend, and a quick look at other madbite fishing plier reviews will show that I’m not the only one raving about it.

3. PISCIFUN FISHING PLIER TOOL
The Piscifun fishing plier tool is another option, being made from Aircraft-grade anodized aluminum to deliver an excellent corrosion resistance. The Titanium-coated Steel Jaws to provide a lot of strength for such a small tool and a lot of durability and the clever and unique split ring design makes for a super simple removal.

4. ZITRADES ALUMINUM FISHING PLIER
This great tool comes with high density handle which is, in their words ‘skidproof’ and designed to be portable and comfortable at fishing time. It does grip well and is very unlikely to slip out of your hands, which can be a huge issue for fishing. In addition to these features it is very lightweight with cool bright design, which though not vital is still worth considering.

5. SPORTSRAIN FISHING PLIER
The Sportsrain fishing plier scissors is yet another high quality tool that can cut through a fishing line or remove the hook from fishes with ease. A great, individual feature in this fishing tool is the specially designed narrow serrated nose that reaches deeper than a lot of the other products can manage into fishes mouths for simple, quick hook extraction. In addition to providing this longer, clever design, it is made of stainless steel and aluminum alloy. Also this is ultra-light and small and convenient to throw into your fishing bag and be on your way.

The Best Kayak Seats for Comfort, Back Support and Stability

best kayak seatsKayaking is a very popular sport, and is becoming more and more popular. It is a great way to see new sights, stay fit and active and is great for fishing and many other hobbies including ocean kayaking. Having the best kayak seat on your kayak is key, especially if you’re looking for a kayak with back support, extra storage or any of the other benefits many of them offer. If you’re also a cyclist you’ll know that comfort is key, and just like a poorly cushioned uncomfortable bicycle seat will really hinder your fun and enjoyment on a bike, an uncomfortable kayak seat will take a lot away from your fun and achievements on the kayak.

Comfort is not the only aspect of what makes a good kayak seat, and stability is hugely important too. One little movement on the wrong seat and you can find yourself in the water, plus knowing you’re in a seat that adds more of a durable, stable platform to your ride can give you a lot of confidence.

Fortunately, we live in an age of ergonomics, quality manufacturing and choice on the market, which has led to there being a lot of choice to suit your own needs. The world of Kayak seats is actually quite varied, and can be tough to navigate on your own, which is why we have created a buying guide to help you work out the features on offer. We have also put together some individual kayak seat reviews.

Features to Look For in Kayak Seats

  • Durability and Stability – In any product, you don’t want something that is going to break straight away, but as briefly mentioned the durability will have an extra level of importance in the world of kayaking. You should be able to shift your weight and sit comfortably without having to worry constantly about ending up in the water. You should be able to move a little without this concern.
  • Comfort – I don’t even just mean being able to think ‘this is comfortable’ or have a seat that doesn’t cause a sore butt after an hour or so. Some people suffer with joint pains or back pains, finding the best kayak seat for back pain is nothing short of essential for some of us to make sure that our health isn’t at risk from sitting in a seat that isn’t well designed, with the correct lumbar support and ergonomic design for your body.
  • Storage – Some kayak seats also come with storage, which can be at a premium when you’re in such a small mode of transport!
  • Cushioning – Being cushioned is also part of your comfort, but can help with joints too and sometimes the cushioning is optional and removable so you can adjust to your preference.
  • Adjustability – Some of the best models of seats are adjustable so can be perfected as per your own preferences and of course your body shape and size. Adjustability also ensures that it will fit most models of kayak.
  • Price – This is likely to play a part in any purchase you make in life, and nobody wants to pay over the odds for something. Just going for the cheapest kayak seat may not be the best option, and the best value for money is more what you should be looking for.

The fact of the matter is, if you are keen on kayaking, investing in a top kayak seat is worth it. They certainly are not the most expensive piece of equipment, and the benefits they can have both for your own enjoyment, avoiding fatigue and even avoiding injuries. Most models of kayak seat are under $100 but you can even buy seats under $50 which will do a very good job, so the cost isn’t too high, especially if you are a regular kayaker and are looking to get a lot of use out of a seat.

Leader Accessories Deluxe Kayak Seat Review

One of the best models we’ve come across is the deluxe kayak seat from Leader Accessories. A quick look at it will tell you that it isn’t cheap and flimsy, and the molded foam seat combines comfort and durability which is exactly what you need. A look at the customer reviews on Amazon and other online retailers show that this is very highly regarded in kayaking circles, so what are the features that set this seat apart?

  • Luxury seat made of firm, comfortable molded foam.
  • Solid, hard wearing connecting snaps which ensure it stays firmly in place. 
  • 2 straps on the front, 2 straps on the rear give a loads of adjustability to ensure it fits your kayak and keeps you comfortable.
  • Great support for both your back and backside with customer reviews showing that this is very comfortable.

Many people with sit on top kayaks have opted for this product, either as a replacement for a broken model or for an upgrade, as this is better than many of the built in kayak seats, or you may have even bought a kayak without a seat. A huge amount of people have given this very positive reviews, so the masses have truly spoken. The comfort and padding that this offers whilst remaining rigid and firm is a big plus point, and it isn’t the most expensive model, so the value for money is definitely good. If you’re setting up for a long day of fishing on your kayak then this is a positive option for anyone who spends a lot of time out on the water.

Pactrade Marine Adjustable Padded Deluxe Kayak Seat

An option which (at the time of writing, at least) is a little more on the affordable side, and for one of the cheapest kayak seats we’ve found offers some very good features and good value.

  • Adjustable front and back straps for a good fit and comfort.
  • Non slip surface with padding for comfort and to keep you stable.
  • Made of Neoprene with a padded back area offering good support for those with back ailments.
  • Strong copper hooks to keep it in place.
  • Detachable backpack for added storage.

The detachable backpack is a huge plus point. Storage isn’t something that is easy to come by in kayaks, and on a sit on top kayak with a seat which you’re not really able to wear a backpack whilst sitting on, you can find yourself a little bit stuck for somewhere to bring your lunch or put more equipment if you’re out on a fishing expedition. A few kayak seats have this feature allowing you to clip the detachable backpack on if you want to (or leave it if you don’t need it).

This is another model of kayak seat which has been reviewed well and many people are reporting it as a huge upgrade on the stock model which comes with kayaks when you buy them, depending on the brand you opt for. This can provide some good comfort for long term trips on the water, even if you are out for a few hours at a time. This is a good option for many of us and though it could be a little sturdier, it is great value for money.

Ocean Kayak Comfort Plus Seat Back

As you might guess, this is designed with ocean kayaking in mind, but is also great for taking out on lakes or other bodies of water. As you might expect from the Comfort Plus label this comes with, it is indeed a very comfy model of kayak seat, even for longer periods of time. The UV resistant material is also hard wearing, and generally it is a pretty rigid model. The reinforced stays give a lot of back support and keep you firmly in place.

 

As well as the comfort, this has four very hard wearing straps to adjust and fit the seat with ease, further adding to the comfort as well as the compatibility with your own model of kayak.

Another very good model of seat which has a lot to offer at a very affordable price tag. It has a lot of five star reviews on online retailers. Some have reported this as a huge upgrade on their built-in seat, and has a lot to offer in terms of comfort and ocean kayaking. You don’t have to look far for reviews recommending that you add this to your kayak routine, and your butt will thank you for going with the comfort plus model.

High-Back Gel Paddle Saddle

The paddle saddle can be used on boats and more, but is very popular among kayakers. It is relatively unique as it offers gel in the padding which truly does make a big difference to your comfort, and it even acts to insulate and avoid you sitting on a cold surface of the kayak. It is designed to stay in place and the material ensures it doesn’t slip along the kayak which can be very annoying. The design has even taken into account pressure points and truly is designed with back pain and other ailments in mind, making it one of the best for those who have a lot of discomfort.

A huge amount of positive reviews tend to mention the comfort, making this a contender for the most comfy kayak seat on the market, and is certainly up there among the best. It comes with a big thumbs up from us at the watersporter but it does have a slightly bigger price tag than some of its competitors.

Notable Mention: Luxfit Premium Coccyx Orthopedic Memory Foam Seat Cushion

Your butt will thank you! There are loads of uses for a memory foam seat cushion, and it can be used in tandem with a kayak seat. Of course if you do end up in the water you might have to wave goodbye to it (though it will probably float and be retrievable) but it can add to the comfort of the seats already mentioned.

Conclusion

In terms of an investment, considering the fact that these can be purchased for under $50 if needed, they add a lot of stability and comfort, and may even save you medical problems and injury. The question of whether to buy a separate seat and upgrade the one that came with your kayak should be relatively straightforward, and hopefully the guide we’ve created make the decision on which one is best for you a lot easier. Enjoyment is paramount when you go out on a kayaking trip, whether you like to go fishing or just go out for leisure and to see the sights, nothing ruins it more than pain, a sore backside or a seat that doesn’t stay firm and in place.

If you have any experience with other kayak seats and have further reviews or opinions you would like to add, feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts below.