While not as thrilling as choosing a kayak or a paddle, choosing the right kayak clothing is important for a fun and safe day on the water. Nothing cramps your style worse than chafing, hypothermia, or heat stroke. Fortunately, a wide range of ergonomic, breathable kayak apparel has been designed specifically to keep you comfortable whether you’re running waterfalls in cold whitewater or sea kayaking on a hot summer day.

When shopping for kayak clothing, the first key to success is to dress for the water. For example, if you’re paddling frigid whitewater in balmy weather, you still need to wear a dry suit, regardless of air temp. But don’t fret, you won’t get too hot. Many kayak apparel manufacturers have begun incorporating heat-reflecting materials into their layering, shirts, pants, and outerwear to help keep your body temperature regulated in varying weather conditions.

The second key to protecting yourself from the elements both on and off the water is layering. A combination of thin and thick layers can provide more heat retention than one thick layer while allowing you to remove one if you begin to overheat.