If there is one part of kayaking that isn’t fun, it’s when you capsize. Causes vary from wakes and currents to excessive weight, be it from your gear or even water in the cockpit. Although kayaks are designed for maximum stability no matter the conditions, accidents happen and knowing what to do can help you avoid an unpleasant experience.\r\nRelax. The first thing to do if you capsize is to remain calm. Kayaks float and your PFD will give you buoyancy. With the right technique for each type of boat, it’s possible to right and re-enter it on your own within just a few seconds.\r\nSit-on-top kayaks. The advantage of this type of kayak is that it’s easy to enter and exit, making it nearly impossible to get stuck in the event that you capsize.\r\nTo flip your kayak back upright, position yourself in the middle, alongside the overturned craft, and hold it from your side with one hand. Boost your body over it to grab the opposite edge with another hand. Then, push and roll the kayak your way as you slide back.\r\nTo re-enter, secure your paddle and climb up again till you’re your abdomen is placed across the seat. Ensure you’re stable and twist your body around to accommodate yourself. \r\nSit-inside kayaks. Although some might be scared at exiting a flipped sit-in kayak as you don’t automatically fall out, there is little chance you’d get trapped. Achieve a wet exit by placing your hands on opposite sides of your cockpit rim and pushing your body out. If you wear a spray skirt, lean forward and pull the grab loop up and back to release it first.\r\nTo right your kayak, grab the side of the cockpit from underneath and roll it over quickly to keep it from being swamped. As it’s inevitable that some water will get in, use a bilge pump to drain it or swim towards the shore to completely empty your boat.\r\nTo re-enter, place yourself at the end of the boat, facing it sideways. Use both hands and arms to hold onto it. Push your body up while kicking your legs until you can rest your chest over the kayak. Then turn your body to the front, sit up with your legs spread, and move up until you can accommodate yourself in the cockpit. Remember to always secure your paddle. \r\nAdvanced kayakers opt for the Eskimo roll technique. By placing the paddle parallel to the boat, leaning forward, and twisting the hips upward while capsized, it is possible to recover without getting out of the boat.\r\nIt’s best to see and practice these recovery methods, not just read about them. Take lessons, watch videos, and rehearse on calm waters.