How to put the kayak on the roof rack by yourself

Install a rack to your vehicle:

To load the kayak on the roof rack, you must have a rack installed in your vehicle. The best rack for your kayak is the J-shaped cradle or the J-rack. It is the most convenient way to place your kayak most safely. The J-rack is more convenient for you if you have a small car or if you want to load more than one kayak. The J-rack is mounted in such a way that if you’re going to pack more things on the roof of your vehicle, then this J-shaped rack will provide you with more space.

The proper way to put your kayak on the roof rack:

There is an appropriate way to lift the kayak to avoid any accident or injury.

  • Put your kayak on the ground in such a way that the edges of the kayak are against your shins.
  • The cockpit should be facing outwards.
  • Bent down on your knees to avoid any injury.
  • Hold the front point of your kayak with one hand and the back of the cockpit with your other hand.
  • Through sliding motion, bring the kayak onto your thighs while your knees remain bent.
  • Lift one of the knees to give full support to your kayak.
  • In this way, you can bring the kayak over your head more smoothly and put it on top of the roof rack.

Easy ways to make the lifting of your kayak:

There are more ways to make lifting more convenient and easy. With more practice, you can get used to it. The kayak’s weight is also an important factor that should be kept in mind while lifting and putting your kayak on the roof rack.

Types of kayaks and weight of kayaks:

If your kayak is for recreational activity, then it means your kayak will be much lighter and smaller in size than the ones used for touring or the sea kayaks. Heavy kayaks can range between 40 to 80 pounds. More lightweight and smaller kayaks are easy to lift and put on a roof rack by yourself.

Best way to lift the kayak by yourself:

If your kayak is shorter and lighter in weight, then the best way to lift your kayak is on your shoulder. Steps that are needed to follow are:

  • Stand in front of your kayak that is sitting on the ground in front of you.
  • The cockpit should be facing outwards, while the kayak should be up against your shins.
  • Place both your hands on the edge of your kayak’s cockpit while bending on your knees.
  • The edge of the kayak should be the closest proximity to your chest.
  • By using a sliding motion, bring the kayak onto your thighs.
  • Hold onto the kayak cockpit’s rim opposite side with your right hand.
  • Stand back and lift the right side of the cockpit rim, and put it on your shoulder.
  • Place the kayak on your shoulder in a comfortable way without hurting yourself in any way.
  • It would help if you lifted the kayak in a comfortable and balanced way. Make sure that the kayak doesn’t hit the ground as you walk.

Protect your back while carrying a kayak:

  • Always bend your knees, never on your waist, as you prepare to lift yourself to carry your kayak to avoid any injury, even if your kayak is shorter and lighter.
  • To avoid any incident or injury, you are suggested to wear your PFD. It will act as a cushion to your shoulder and make the lifting more comfortable.
  • When picking up your kayak, make sure the bow should face forward. It will make the process way more manageable.

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