Kayaking, Canoeing & Rafting

Kayaking Equipment: How To Choose The Best Kayaking Gloves

Kayaking gloves are a staple part of kayaking equipment, so you want to make sure you've purchased the right pair

Kayaking gloves are a key part of winter kayaking equipment. Photo: iStock

If you are planning on kayaking in the autumn or winter, kayaking gloves are a crucial part of any kayaking equipment list. When you are paddling in cold water, you hands will get chilly quickly. Even the slightest bit of wind makes it feel like it’s -20°C outside.

There are lots of style of kayaking gloves to choose from. If you choose a pair of thick kayaking gloves, they will be super warm but you will have less dexterity with the paddle in your hands. Thin gloves however will increase movement and grip on the paddle but won’t be as warm.

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You can buy kayaking mittens which are even warmer than regular kayaking gloves, but as you can imagine, it’s hard to do anything apart from hold onto the paddle with mitts.

Pogies are open palmed gloves which fit onto your paddle shaft. You just push your hand in and grip onto the shaft. When you are paddling, they are much warmer than gloves. However, because they stay on the paddle, if you need to take your hand out, it won’t be protected from the cold. They also cup the water when you dip your hand in, which isn’t great for rolling or playboating, but they are great for keeping most downstream paddlers’ hands warm.

We’ve put together a few of the best kayaking gloves in our kayaking equipment rundown here. If you want the best first-hand advice on kayaking gloves, get down to your local kayaking shop for more assistance.


Photo: Palm

Price: £20

If you are looking for an extremely comfortable pair of gloves, look no further than Palm. They make some of the best kayaking equipment in Europe. The Grab kayaking gloves are made from 2mm super stretch neoprene which will slide onto your hand like, well, a glove. They are coated with titanium to keep your fingers warm, plus the palm is covered in a grippy print. The fingers are already bent to increase blood flow to your fingertips.

Buy the Palm Grab Kayaking Gloves here


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Photo: NRS

Price: £43

Kayakers rave about NRS’ Maverick gloves. They are said to be among the warmest kayaking gloves around. Made with titanium neoprene, the Maverick gloves keep you warm by reflecting your body heat back towards you. These gloves have liquid sealed seams which means they are waterproof up to the cuff. The wrist is sealed with a HydroCuff, keeping the water out and the heat in. You don’t have to sacrifice grip to stay warm – the textured palm will keep your hands firmly on the paddle shaft.

Buy the NRS Maverick Kayaking Gloves here


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Photo: Yak

Price: £24

Mittens are another great option when it comes to kayaking equipment. Just like when you are skiing, mittens tend to keep your hands a little warmer than regular gloves. The beauty of the Yak Open Palm Mitt is your hands will stay toasty while also retaining skin-contact grip with the shaft. The back of the mitten is made with 3mm thick neoprene and covered with wind resistant mesh to fight off the cold. The palm meanwhile has a thinner 2mm layer to enhance flexibility and an open palm for perfect grip.

Buy the Yak Open Palm Mittens here


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Photo: NRS

Price: £40

NRS Toaster Mitts are described as the ‘warmest paddling glove on the water’. If you suffer from seriously cold hands, these could be mittens for you. Unlike the Yak mitts above, these gloves have a closed palm, so you might find your dexterity is more limited. However they are super warm. The 3.5mm neoprene is coated with a water-repellent layer, which draws moisture away from the glove. Inside they are lined with super warm VaporLift which dries instantly. The pre-curved fingers will help you keep a steady grip on the paddle shaft.

Buy the NRS Toaster Mittens here


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Photo: Lomo

Price: £11

Lomo make great kayaking equipment including pogies for reasonable prices. The Polar Neoprene Pogies are made from 3mm neoprene with a velcro closure around the paddle shaft. The inside is lined with nylon to keep your hands feeling comfortable. Pogies allow you to hold the paddle with your bare hand while protecting your skin from the cold water and wind.

Buy the Lomo Polar Neoprene Pogies here

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