The Best Shoes For Kayaking On 2022 For Better Paddling

I know that you'll agree that having the proper gear can make a difference between comfortable kayaking from a disastrous one. It is for that reason why I have been persistent in introducing the right kayaking gears in this blog.

Items like personal flotation devices, helmets, and wetsuits should be included in your kayaking checklist. They are the ones that can make your adventure safe and convenient at the same time. Unless you want to put yourself into risk intentionally, you can just ignore these recommendations. But I know that none of you are that daft to put into a compromise.


In this blog, I will be showing you the best shoes for kayaking. One way or another, you have to realize that wearing the proper footgear while you are paddling is quite necessary. Not only they make your feet comfortable, but they can also provide support so that you can paddle better.

But here's the catch!

Not all water shoes are made to fit this particular outdoor sport. You need something that possesses durability and versatility at the same time. Of course, only the ergonomics ones can provide such a capability. Better check out the next section because I have included some of the top-rated kayaking shoes that you can get!

Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties

I know the feeling of getting into your boat and not having the perfect feel for your feet. That's the very reason why we turn down the standard water shoes if there's an alternative to be offered.

The Sea to Summit Ultra Flex Booties is a workhorse that you can trust. It can deal with different terrains and applications because of its robust design. Whether you are on sharp barnacles or rough rocks, this particular footwear can help you out. Of course, when you are on your kayak, this pair of booties can provide you adequate control on your boots.

I cannot emphasize enough how comfortable this footgear is. It gives your feet the utter convenience that it needs while on the kayak. It is also breathable, but at the same time, provides sufficient insulation for tackle the cold weather.


  • Features a secure Y-pull Velcro strap for a tight fit
  • Tailored from a rugged 3mm neoprene
  • Durable and low-profile design for different water sports and activities
  • Flexible construction so that can deal technical pursuits
  • Provides extra support and control to your feet.


  • No known issues.
NRS Desperado Wetshoe

Like some of the other NRS gears, I am quite compelled to recommend kayaking from this particular manufacturer. Specifically, the NRS Desperado Wetshoe is an exceptional outdoor shoe that is tailored for watery applications. It uses excellent synthetic materials on its construction for better durability and flexibility.

It has been noted by the NRS that this water shoe is tailored for boating purposes. Likewise, it can still be used on other water sports like surfing and kayaking. You can trust men when I say that this footgear is durable. It is quite different from other water shoes that can be torn easily.

The composition of the Desperado features the use of neoprene. Meanwhile, the sole is made from rugged rubber so that it can absorb impact without being too flimsy. However, the best part of this shoe is its unisex design!


  • Rugged and durable construction
  • Versatile enough to work on various terrains
  • Specifically made for boating activities
  • Provides impact-absorbing outsole
  • Comes in a unisex design.


  • This particular is hard to put on.
Stohlquist Men's Tideline Boots

It is pretty common for kayakers to go with the most cost-efficient choice. I mean, not all of us are searching for the most expensive ones to prove the quality of the gear. An entry-value option is quite a delight, especially if you are just looking a pair of footwear for leisure paddling.

What’s more?

The Stohlquist Tideline Boot is a prime example of an entry-level kayaking boot but with exceptional quality. The upper is made from neoprene, which has been tailored to conform to your feet size. Meanwhile, the footbed of this boot has been ergonomically shaped for your warmth and comfort.

The outsole also includes vulcanized rubber to further optimize its rigidity against impact and shock. There are YKK zippers on each of the boot that has non-corrosive properties. They allow quick access and exit, which makes the boot more ergonomic.


  • Features heel caps and rubber toe for extra protection
  • Shaped footbed for better feet comfort
  • Great for applications where the temperature is cold
  • The outsole features great traction
  • Mitigates water entry.


  • Not fully waterproof as what I have expected.
NRS Backwater Neoprene Wetshoes

As I have been saying, a high-quality shoe or boot can make the difference in your kayaking adventure. Of course, it is quite challenging to find one, especially that a lot of footgear are claiming that they are the best. But don't fret. I have found one that can really walk the talk.

The NRS Backwater Neoprene Wetshoe is the thing that I am talking about. You see, as a neoprene-tailored boot, it is quite surprising that the Backwater has so much to offer. It provides exceptional water defense, leaving your feet dry even if your cockpit is stormed by water. The insides are comfortable, too. The footbed is padded for better comfort and support.

Of course, I can promise that the other ergonomics of this shoe is quite impressive as well. The traction is great so that you can tackle the slippery surfaces without getting toppled. The toe region has been shaped anatomically to prevent the inhibition of your toes. You can feel free all the time with this shoe!


  • High-top construction to prevent water entry
  • Padded for comfort and support for superior paddling control
  • Sides and back are ventilated
  • Guaranteed to be durable and rugged
  • Can provide exceptional insulation.


  • No known issues.
NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top Boots

I can say that the NeoSport Wetsuits Paddle Low Top are not as popular as the first options that I have listed here. However, trust me when I say that this shoe has a decent performance. It is designed for paddling applications such as kayaking and canoeing. For leisure and recreational purposes, you will never regret wearing this gear at all!


Just like other shoes for kayaking, the upper of the NeoSport Low Top is tailored from neoprene. It features comfort to the paddler throughout an extended water trip. The seams of this shoe have been glued and sewn. As a result, the shoe becomes warm and durable. Meanwhile, its sole is made from thermoplastic rubber that optimizes the flexibility of your feet.

I also noticed that there is a hardened insert that has been placed on the sole. The very purpose of this extra augmentation is to provide the shoe with puncture resistance. It just doesn't help you paddle well; it makes your feet protected, too!


  • Fully breathable construction
  • Features decent durability
  • Doesn't inhibit the flexibility of your feet
  • Can still provide insulation
  • Puncture-resistant outsole.


  • Sizing issues.

How To Choose the Best Shoes For Kayaking on a Perfect Day

How To Choose the Best Shoes For Kayaking on a Perfect Day

You see, not all shoes are suitable for kayaking. It is something that you have to understand in the first place.

But why does it matter?

Of course, paddling requires the necessary level of concentration. You can paddle better if you are complete with the essential gears and amenity. Footgear might not be the first thing that you can think whenever you go to paddling. However, much of convenience is still dependent on them.

Your feet have to remain warm and protected while it is inside the cockpit. Some rough routes can cause discomforts and injuries to your feet if it is unprotected. This is especially true if you are riding on a sit-on-top kayak, which exposes your feet.

Furthermore, the right shoes can provide sufficient traction and support. When you walk on solid substrates or areas where there are a lot of sprawling branches, your feet have to be fully equipped. Not only the shoes can offer protection, but at the same time, it can also help you traverse slippery terrains.

That's not all. The proper shoes improve your control of the kayak. With a good "feel," paddling would be a lot easier, right?

But here's the catch: a shoe has to be fitted for kayaking applications first before you can take it to your paddling trips. Here are some of the requirements that you should check out.


The thickness of a shoe is essential in choosing a pair of shoes for water applications. And right now, I can say that there's no such thing as a wrong thickness.

This factor is quite crucial because it determines the warmth that your feet can feel. If you are going to explore cold terrains, you need footwear that has solid construction. Usually, the kayaking shoe for cold temperatures should have a thickness of 4 mm and up. They should be above the ankle as well to further optimize insulation and warmth.

During sunny days, you will want a shoe that has been made with thin materials. If possible, you pick those that have been made with thin neoprene or mesh. You can also opt for those that have a sandal design because of their low-profile and breathable design.


It is important that you should also inspect the outsole of the shoe. It simply determines the types of terrains where you can use the shoe. Of course, you just don't stay on the boat on a kayaking trip. In a lot of cases, you need to walk and climb before you can go to your actual destination.

If you are familiar with your terrain, you should be able to determine if you need a shoe with rugged outsole. Once the ground is filled with sharp rocks, branches, and other stray objects, the shoe should be sturdy at all times. Walking bare is quite discouraged.

The first requirement that you need to secure is puncture resistant. The outsole should be tough enough to fend off these jagged objects with ease. If it cannot prevent objects from piercing through, wounds and injuries should be expected already.

It is also necessary that the outsole has enough traction to prevent you from slipping. It is pretty understandable that you will be dealing with slippery terrains. Therefore, the traction of the outsole is indeed crucial. Impact negation should be considered as well.

Height Of The Cut

As you have seen on the selections that I have listed, kayak shoes have different cuts.

But what's the real story about these cuts?

Don't ever think that these variations are just for aesthetics! Well, at some point, it might be correct. However, there are other technical explanations for them. Specifically, they are there to optimize protection, comfort, and support.

Well, there are three types of cuts that are available today: low-cut, knee-high, and ankle.

  • Low-Cut - This particular cut is excellent whenever you are kayaking on warm conditions. It can provide sufficient flexibility and comfort. However, take note that the protection and insulation that they can give is limited. They are really good for recreational purposes! Usually, they are tailored from neoprene or mesh.
  • Knee High - This option is the direct opposite of the low-cut shoes. If you are a usual visitor of cold waters, then knee-high shoes are necessary. They can provide excellent insulation and defense against water entry. Make sure that the knee-high shoe has a tight fit whenever you are kayaking. If water gets into them, your movement will be drastically restricted.
  • Ankle High - The warmth and support of an ankle-high shoe are better than low-cut shoes. Generally, they are used by many kayakers because they offer the best of both worlds. They can provide decent insulation and support, even without compromising your mobility and speed.

Bottom Line

The best shoes for kayaking are definitely essential amenities that should be present on your checklist. It is the one that can provide support, comfort, and protection. If you can wear a good pair, there's already a guarantee that your adventure in the water would be pleasant and successful.

I have a good selection in this guide that should help you have your first exceptional and ergonomic shoes for kayaking. You should consider them first because you will never regret them. But if you are looking for something else, my guide can help you out. The most important thing here is that you can secure your feet while you are paddling!

Did you find this guide helpful? If you have questions or suggestions, drop them in the comment section below.

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