Best Sit on Top Kayak Seats in [year]

 

Are you looking for the best sit on top kayak seat? Look for something that is comfortable and has good adjustability.

Finding the right seat can be mind-numbing. This is why we have curated the most comfortable seats in the market.

This guide also shows how to pick the right seat for yourself and why you should buy a kayak seat in the first place.

Without further ado, here are the best sit on top kayak seats:

Pactrade Marine Adjustable Padded Deluxe Kayak Seat Detachable Back Backpack/Bag

Riot Escape 9The Pactrade Marine Adjustable Kayak Seat is a unique product. Not only is it made of high-quality materials, but it also has interesting adjustability features.

The seat comes with front and rear straps to secure the seat in place. The extra front straps provide added stability and make sure you are supported at all times. You will be surprised at the fine build quality of this seat. Everything feels sturdy – the seat bottom, the high backrest, the straps and hardware – it will definitely last for many years to come.

The seat comes with a little pouch on the back that can be used to store a water bottle or similar items. The back is stiff enough and doesn’t tilt or compress too much as you lean on it. This helps you feel supported.

Adding an aftermarket cushion to the seat bottom will make it good for people with thinner buttocks, but not necessary. Whether or not the seat padding is enough also depends on whether you have enough fat in your butt or not.

The seat is perfect for big and tall people as the back support is quite high. The seat is lightweight and easy to install. You can set it up within a few minutes. The seat bottom is non-slippery which is a huge savior when you are paddling hard and want to remain stable.

One downside that may take getting used to is that the seat straps make the seat slide back and forth a bit. This isn’t a deal-breaker but takes time to adjust for a long paddle.

Overall, the seat is very comfortable – you can paddle for hours on and your butt will still not hurt or go numb. The back support is impressive – it stays firm but doesn’t hurt your back. This is essentially the perfect sit on top kayak seat one could wish for.

Pros

  • High back support
  • Solid build quality
  • Anti-slip seat bottom
  • Four adjusting straps
  • Storage pouch on the back
  • Suits big and tall people
  • Easy to set up
  • All-rounder

Cons

  • The seat straps may make the seat slide back and forth
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Harmony Gear Standard Sit on Top Seat

Riot Escape 9If you are looking for a high-quality sit on top kayak seat, the Harmony Gear is a compelling option. It has many attractive features that make it worth your money.

First, it is fully adjustable. So you can use the two straps and set it up in your desired position. Non-adjustable seats become painful after a while, so this is a huge plus. The back support is firm and keeps you comfortable through long rides. Plus it is a little more firm than usual, which helps you keep a healthy and upright posture.

The Harmony sit on top kayak seat provides overwhelming value for money. The seats hook up to your kayak easily and take two minutes to set up. The snaps and buckles that come with the seat are sturdy and durable.

The padding is good but depends on your preferences. You can always add a seat pad to increase comfort levels.

Overall, the Harmony Gear is a great buy if you are on a budget and looking for a seat with a good and firm back support.

Pros

  • High build quality
  • Good back support
  • Adjustable
  • Easy to install
  • Lightweight
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Cushion is okay, but could be better
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BKC UH-PS223 Universal Sit-On-Top Premium Memory Foam Padded Kayak Seat

Riot Escape 9Are you looking for a high-quality seat with high back support? Want something that supports big and tall people? Then, the BKC UH-PS223 deserves your attention.

It is built with high-quality materials: a combination of 600D sturdy polyester and neoprene. Both materials are resistant to sun and water damage. They are robust, so the seat won’t succumb to wear or tear easily. Not only that, but the fabric and brass elements are marine-grade quality. So you know beforehand that you will be getting the best build quality.

Here’s why we love its build quality: the seat has better strap material, more robust strap adjusters and bigger clips than those seen in comparable kayak seats.

Kayakers who have experience with as many as 60+ rental kayaks recommend this kayak seat as the go-to option. The seat has a good amount of padding which makes it suitable for long kayaking sessions. If you have back pain, this seat will be a huge savior since the adjustable back perfectly supports your lower back.

The back support of the seat is high enough to support your entire back area up to your shoulder blades. The high back support is especially good for big and tall people.

The bottom of the seat is comfortable too. So if you are tired of hard seats that hurt your butt, you will love the BKC. However, a couple of users were unsatisfied with the cushion on the bottom and used seat pads to resolve the issue.

The amazing thing is that this seat fits both sit on top and sit in kayak models. You just need to add a high density foam wedge and it transforms into the most comfortable seat ever.

Pros

  • Superior quality
  • High back support
  • Good for big and tall people
  • Good padding on the back
  • Adjustable
  • Comparable to big brands
  • Value for money

Cons

  • A couple users found the seat bottom lacking in padding
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BKC UH-KS222 Universal Sit-On-Top Soft Padded Kayak Seat

Riot Escape 9BKC is a solid manufacturer of kayak seats in the budget segment. They have shown time and again that you don’t need to spend hundreds of bucks to get a quality seat for your boat.

The seat is made of brass hardware and sturdy woven nylon that doesn’t get damaged due to sun or water. The materials used are marine grade quality, so the seat will last for many years.

The seat is fully adjustable, so you can find the perfect position to get comfortable. The backrest is firm enough to stay grounded when you lean back on it and comfortable enough to not hurt your back when sitting for long periods. The seat straps tighten up well to provide support.

The seat is easy and quick to install or remove. There is a zipped pocket on the back where you can keep any storage items. It can also act as a drink bottle holder. The seat bottom is made of the same nylon material, which can get slippery at times. So you can pop-rivet it to the kayak so it doesn’t get displaced from its position.

One can easily flip up the kayak for cleaning. Some users mentioned the seat doesn’t have enough cushion. However, this also depends on one’s personal preference. Another downside is the seat bottom may keep sliding, so you might need to secure it by drilling two screws into the bottom where it attaches to the back. Riveting it to the kayak using a washer ensures the rivet doesn’t damage the seat.

Pros

  • Marine grade quality
  • Fully adjustable
  • Easy to install or remove
  • Comfortable
  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Good back support

Cons

  • Padding is thin
  • Seat bottom is slippery
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Ocean Kayak Comfort Plus Seat Back

Riot Escape 9If you want a high-quality kayak seat for your sit on top kayak, don’t overlook the Ocean Kayak Comfort Plus. There are many reasons it is our top pick.

The number one thing that we like about the Ocean Comfort Plus is the back support. It is firm enough to help keep a steady posture and padded enough for comfort. This comes with four straps to provide stability while paddling. It is made with tough nylon material that has an intrinsic ventilation system. So you can paddle for long hours without getting hot or sweaty.

The brass swivel buckles make installment a breeze. You can set it up within minutes. The nylon cloth is UV resistant so the seat won’t get faded damaged from the sun.

The seat has a high backrest that supports your entire back from the small of your back to the shoulder blades area. The bottom padding is okay but not great. You may need to add a seat pad or perhaps add the one from the stock seat that came with your kayak, to make it comfortable for long hours. If you mostly plan short kayaking trips, then this seat would be sufficient, without having to add extra cushion.

If you have back pain or any lower back issues, this seat will be perfect for you. Many users reported using it despite having back pain problems. The high back also means it will suit big and tall people. The seat is easy to adjust on the fly, unlike other kayak seats that can create a bit of fuss.

The amazing thing is that despite providing good build quality, decent levels of comfort , and an amazing back support, the seat doesn’t cost as much as those from big brands. Keep in mind that the straps need to be tightened carefully or the seat will slip back and forth.

Pros

  • Build quality
  • Sturdy back support
  • High back support
  • Easily adjustable
  • Quick to install
  • Durable
  • Ventilation system
  • UV resistant

Cons

  • Seat bottom could use more padding
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KERCO Angler-x Adjustable Sit on Top Kayak

Riot Escape 9The Kerco Angler X adjustable sit on top kayak seat is a high-quality seat with attractive features. If you have tried other seats that leave you with a hurting bottom and a sore back, it is time to check out the Kerco Angler X.

The seat is built with molded dura foam and nylon fabric. The material feels good and sturdy.

The seat is made for comfort. You never feel any pain or soreness in your butt or back. The back support is great and the bottom has sufficient padding to keep you comfortable for long rides. The back support is high enough to support all of your back for long hours. The seat bottom is anti-slip which is important when you are paddling hard and want to remain stable.

The seat comes with adjustable front and back straps that allow you to find the perfect seating position. The seat doesn’t move back and forth and remains secured with marine grade anti-corrosion clips. There is a zipper pouch on the back you can use to keep stuff like a bottle or smartphone.

Pros

  • Value for money
  • Affordable
  • Comfortable with sufficient padding
  • Adjustable back
  • High back support
  • Anti-slip bottom
  • Marine grade clips

Cons

  • None as such
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Leader Accessories Deluxe Padded Kayak Seat Fishing Boat Seat

Riot Escape 9If you want a reliable kayak seat for your sit on top kayak, the Leader Accessories is the one to go. It comes with marine grade brass straps that secure the seat and don’t let it displace while paddling. On the inside, the seat has EVA foam and on the outside, it is made with 210D polyester. The build quality is sold, just one touch and you can tell that the seat is going to last a long time.

The seat is super comfortable with an extra high back. So if you are tall, you will have full support for your spine. The best part is that the back support covers your entire back from the lower back to your shoulder blades. The back support is firm enough to hold your back in a steady position while making sure you don’t get sore. If you struggle with back pain, this seat could be a huge savior. In fact, the tall back support is the main reason why a lot of customers buy this kayak seat.

The seat comes with two straps in the front and two in the rear. This gives the seat a wider range of adjustability than an average seat. Installing the seat is a breeze and it can fit perfectly in any sit on top kayak. Removing the seat is easy as well.

The seat is comfortable enough for long kayak rides too. Many customers who had 5-7 hours-long kayak rides were impressed with how comfortable it was. The straps and buckles are high-quality and very accessible while kayaking to easily adjust the position of the seat.

The kayak seat comes with a detachable waterproof storage bag at the back. So you can store your smartphone and other valuables and keep them from getting wet. You may want to install pad eyes for better installation.

One downside that customers reported is that the seat bottom doesn’t have a thick cushion. The padding there is just average. But users mentioned using additional seat pads to resolve the problem.

Pros

  • Build quality is impeccable
  • High back support
  • Four straps for full adjustability
  • Easy to install or remove
  • Waterproof bag for storage
  • Accessible straps and buckles
  • Hardware is marine grade quality

Cons

  • Seat bottom could use more padding
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Seamander Kayak Seat Canoe Seat with Detachable Back Storage Bag

Riot Escape 9The Seamander kayak sit is the perfect sit on top kayak seat if you are looking for something durable as well as comfortable. If you want high back support, the Seamander has got you covered.

The seat bottom has extra padding to make your kayak rides as comfortable as possible. In fact, the company claims that this seat has the most cushioning of all ocean kayak seats. However, user reports indicate the cushion is good, but not great.

The building material is tough nylon, so you know that it won’t get damaged wear and tear or exposure to sun or water. It has a built-in ventilation system to ensure you don’t get hot and sweaty when paddling for a long time.

The back support is amazing. You can do a difficult 4-mile paddle on it and still not get sore on your back or bottom.

The seat comes with a removable bag to keep your valuable items. The seat has four straps that come from the back to give you a stable position. They also make it easy to adjust the seat position. You can choose how inclined you want the back support to be. The good thing is that it stays firm and allows you to sit in a steady position.

The seat is easy to install and remove. The seat was able to stay in place for most customers. However, a couple of customers mentioned using a velcro strap to keep the seat pad from slipping. You could also rivet it to your kayak to resolve the issue. A slightly annoying thing is that the four straps on the back can flap around as you paddle. A quick fix for this is to wrap them together with a rubber band.

Pros

  • Tough nylon material
  • High back support
  • Good for long paddles
  • Firm back support
  • Easy to adjust the back incline level
  • Stays cool and dry
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Seat may slip, adding velcro strap will help
  • Straps dangle around, can be secured with a rubber band
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Ocean Kayak Comfort Tech Seat for Sit-On-Top Kayaks

Riot Escape 9This next one is a quality seat from one of the better kayak brands, Ocean Kayak. The seat has everything you need – comfort, quality, adjustability and stability. Let us look at each feature in detail.

The seat is made with nylon pack cloth, which is sturdy and durable. It won’t get damaged due to exposure to water or sun. The material is UV resistant too, so it won’t fade or peel. It won’t wear or tear easily either.

Besides the material, the stitching and the brass clips are robust, so this will last many years. You will certainly be impressed with the build quality of this seat.

The kayak seat comes with four mounting straps – two on the back and two on the front. This makes it fully adjustable – incline the back to your liking and enjoy sitting in a steady and comfortable position.

The back support is high and firm. It is as good as it gets. You can lean back for long paddles and it won’t make you sore.

Installing this sit on top kayak seat is easy and takes a couple of minutes. The only area where a few customers struggled is the bottom padding. It needs more cushioning to be more comfortable, especially for people with thinner butts.

The seat bottom can also be slippery, so installing a velcro strap can resolve the issue. Without the additional straps, you will be tightening the straps every few minutes of your paddle.

Overall, the Ocean Kayak Comfort Tech seat is a premium upgrade from any stock seat at an affordable price.

Pros

  • Robust quality
  • High back support
  • Fully adjustable with four straps
  • Brass clips, quality stitching
  • Easy to install
  • Value for money
  • UV resistant

Cons

  • Seat can be slippery, velcro strap can secure it
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Vibe Kayaks Deluxe Padded Kayak Seats Sit on Top

Riot Escape 9The Vibe Kayaks seat is a superior quality seat with marine grade build quality and a comfortable seat. Here is why customers love it:

The back support is quite high, which means your back will be fully supported. This is better than other kayak seats where your upper back and sides aren’t supported fully. Poor back support becomes a huge problem for tall and big people. So this is a huge plus. If you have back pain, you will love the Vibe kayak seat.

The back is firm enough to give you a steady posture and comfortable enough to not hurt your back. The seat pad has thin padding, so you might need to buy an aftermarket seat pad to stay comfortable for those long paddles.

The multiple adjustment straps allow you to find the perfect position to sit in. They are built with sturdy, marine grade quality, brass snaps.

Note that it requires four points of attachment on your kayak. Many sit on top kayaks only have two. So you may need to install two pad eyes to install this seat.

You will have to tighten the seat straps properly, otherwise they will be slippery. You can add some velcro straps to eliminate the slipping, just in case. It comes with a detachable bag to keep your supplies safe and secure. The pouch is water resistant so you can use it to store your phone, wallet, lunch or other supplies.

You will need to buy the tie downs and rivets separately. Installation is easy but there are no instructions, so a YouTube video can help.

Pros

  • Sturdy
  • Comfortable back
  • Firm and tall back
  • Fully adjustable
  • Water resistant, removable pouch
  • Comfortable
  • Good for big and tall people
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Seat bottom could use more padding
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Why Do I Need a Kayak Seat?

Although sit on top kayaks come with a stock seat, not all stock seats are comfortable. If this is the case, either you can buy an expensive kayak for 1000 which comes with a good seat or more or you can just buy a new seat and install it in the place of your stock seat.

Stock seats don’t have enough padding to keep you comfortable for long periods. Moreover, they may not be adjustable as aftermarket kayak seats are. An adjustable seat lets you find the perfect position to make yourself comfortable.

Stock seats may not be built with high-quality materials. They may give in to wear and tear too soon. They may also not be breathable and get hot and sweaty after a few minutes of paddling.

How to Choose a Kayak Seat: Buying Guide

Build Quality

An important factor to consider is the build quality. Quality seats are made with materials like nylon fabric which can last a long time. Strong material is also less prone to damage. Some building materials are also UV resistant and enhance the life of the kayak seat.

Check the quality of the strap clips. Since they are the main link between the kayak and the seat, ensure that they are robust and durable.

Back Support

A good kayak seat has a high back so that you are supported from your lower back through your shoulder blades. Moreover, the back support should be adjustable so that you can pick the right seating position. It should have an appropriate range of incline.

If you struggle with back pain, pay special attention to this feature. Make sure to buy a seat with a high back support. Also, ensure that the seat stays in place once strapped onto the kayak.

Non-Slippery, Stable

After tightening the seat buckles, the seat should be able to stay in place. If you have to tighten the straps too frequently, you would not be able to enjoy the ride. The seat bottom should be non-slippery – some high-rated seats listed in this guide lack this feature, but they feel okay after you get used to them. The seat should also have a wide base so that you can easily shift or move when needed.

Ventilation

The seat material should be breathable. If there is no ventilation, you will get hot and sweaty and won’t enjoy your kayak ride.

Padding

The key thing to check is whether there is enough cushion or padding in the seat. You don’t want to spend money on a seat that will leave your back and buttocks sore.

None of the kayak seats above has too much padding. Many of them have sufficient padding and a few have slightly less padding on the bottom than ideal. If a sit on top kayak seat lacks padding on the seat bottom, it can be resolved by adding a seat pad.

You don’t want a seat with thin padding. But too much padding isn’t comfortable either. It may feel bulky and make it hard to move or shift in the seat. If the padding is too much, you may get sweaty and hot faster too.

Storage

Many seats come with a detachable pouch or bag that can be attached to the back of the seat. You can store things like your phone, wallet or lunch in this bag. Also check if the bag/pouch is waterproof.

Compatibility

Check if your boat is compatible with the seat. Some seats are compatible with both sit in and sit on top kayaks. Others are made exclusively to sit on tops. Check your kayak width and see if the kayak has enough points of attachment. More on it below.

Adjustability

Whether or not the seat is adjustable determines comfort levels. If you can recline the seat to your liking, you will enjoy sitting in it every time you hit the water. Moreover, the adjustment straps and buckles should be easily accessible. You should not have to bend or move too much to reach them, otherwise it can be annoying.

Will You Need Pad Eyes?

When buying a seat, check the number of points of attachment your kayak has to attach a seat. If a seat needs four points of attachment and you have just two, it would mean more work for you. You will have to install two pad eyes to install the seat, which can be time-consuming.

The right kayak seat will be easy to install as well as easy to remove. If it needs too much work, it is not worth it.

Body Type

Your body type also matters when picking the right kayak seat. For example, if you are big and tall, you would need a kayak seat with a high back and wide seat bottom. Otherwise you will be uncomfortable using the seat from day one.

Also, check for any physical conditions that you may have. If you have back pain, make sure to buy a seat with high back support.

How to Install the Seat on a Sit-on-Top Kayak

Installing the kayak seat is easy. But you need to follow the right procedure to get the most out of your seat.

Most kayak seats have four points of attachment with clips on each. There are four straps, two on the side, two on the back. The two straps on the side go forward and attach to the kayak. On the other hand, the two straps on the back go backward and attach to the kayak.

Once you understand this, the first step is to place the seat where you want to sit. Then, start clipping it into the kayak. There are four places to clip into – this step is straight forward.

Clipping in the seats is easy. The hard part is tightening the straps hard enough to ensure that the seat doesn’t slip to the side and goes all over the place. Here is how it is done:

  • Put your hand on the seat bottom and hold it tight.
  • Pull the bottom strap tight on the left and then pull the one on the right. You have to pull the strap up against the buckle. This step ensures that the seat doesn’t move forward when you lean back.
  • Now pull the straps on the top of the back while putting your hand firmly on the seat bottom. Pull both straps and tighten them properly.
  • The final step is to tighten the straps when you are on board, sitting in the kayak seat. In this step, while you lean back on the backrest, move forward a bit and pull the straps on the side. Then repeat and pull the strap on the other side. This helps you maintain a steady, upright posture and also gives back support.
  • If you want to lean back and the backrest seems too uptight to do that, you can loosen the straps from the tabs located on both sides.

Here is a video that walks you through the process:

Do Sit on Top Kayak Seats work with other kayak types?

Sit on top kayak seats fit in most types of kayaks including sit in kayaks and paddleboards. A paddleboard can convert into a kayak hybrid using a kayak seat.

If there are sufficient attachment points, you can easily attach a sit on top kayak seat to your paddleboard or sit-in kayak.

If there are less attachment points, you can rivet more points, add D-rings or use pad eyes to secure your seat into your kayak.

Here is a video that shows how to convert your SUP into a kayak:

Will I Need to Buy an Additional Seat Pad?

The short answer is, not necessarily. Many kayak seats in this guide have comfortable seat bottoms that don’t leave your butt sore after a long kayaking session. The Pactrade Marine Adjustable Padded Deluxe Kayak Seat is a suitable option if you are looking for a super comfy seat.

If the kayak seat you purchased has good back support, but thin padding on the bottom, a seat pad can make things comfortable for you. However, if the seat you bought doesn’t have good back support either, it is better to return the product and get a better seat.

Final Thoughts

Sit on top kayak seats come in various types.

Some are more comfortable, others have better features such as waterproof storage.

There are a few key things that matter: padding, back support, adjustability, build and stability.

Our top pick is the Pactrade Marine Adjustable Kayak seat. It has positive reviews from hundreds of customers and is super comfortable, even for long paddles.