Best Canoe SeatDuring the spring, summer, and fall I love heading out onto the water with my canoe and taking in the lovely sights while I’m able to enjoy the nice weather.

Over the past few years I’ve spent more more time canoeing on the water on the lakes and rivers nearby to where I live and I’m always looking for ways to make it more enjoyable and more comfortable for me.

I’ve picked up quite a few different accessories and I’ve made a wide range of different additions to my canoe but I think one of the best things I ever did was start using a canoe seat.

Not only did having a seat make it more comfortable for me when I was paddling around but it also enabled me to paddle more efficiently and when I was just coasting along I could actually lean back and relax rather than continually trying to find a comfortable spot on the canoe itself.

I also think that having the seat made it more stable for me since I was more confident behind the paddle so to speak and I wanted to share with you guys some of my recommendations when it comes to the best canoe seat that I would suggest taking a look at to use for your own canoeing adventures.

There are quite a few options to choose from, such as ones that come with back pads, padding, arm rests, and other features so I wanted to come up with a few different recommendations that you can check out and use as a starting point for your own research if you’re looking for a seat to use with your canoe.

Best Overall
GCI Outdoor SitBacker Adjustable Canoe Seat with Back Support, Hunter
  • High quality, field tested travel chairs
  • Made using the highest quality materials
  • Easy folding and transport
  • Patented BackComfort Technology for customized reclining
  • Patented single buckle Auto-Fold Technology with Portage Lock shoulder strap for easy folding and carrying

The GCI Outdoor SitBacker Canoe Seat is one of my top recommendations when it comes to the best canoe chair.

This chair is designed to be attached to the benches in your canoe and attaching it is done by a dual buckle strap system that keeps it attached and in place when you’re using it to sit down on.

It’s actually possible to adjust the position of the back rest so that you can find a better reclining position depending on what you’re looking for and there’s also a lumbar cushion that offer is lower back support and is also more comfortable for when you’re sitting down in the canoe for extended periods of time.

It has a weight capacity of up to 250 pounds and the seat itself weighs just 3 pounds so it’s quite portable and not that heavy that you want to be able to bring it with you out onto the water.

If you’re portaging or just carrying it around with you from your car to the canoe the seat even comes with a portage lock shoulder strap that keeps the chair folded up and makes it easier for you to carry if your hands are full with oars or other accessories.

One of the interesting features that I like about it is that it comes with a storage pocket that you can use for storing anything you need quick access to such as a knife, whistle, or even any maps that you’re using.

Also of note is the split contour seat and this is designed to be used on canoe benches that are both molded or flat to make it a little more comfortable for when you’re sitting down.

As for its design, the seat takes advantage of a powder coated steel frame that helps to keep it sturdy and durable when you’re using it and the fabric is actually a 600 denier polyester material.

I would definitely recommend taking a look at the GCI Outdoor SitBacker if you’re looking for a chair to use in your canoe if you want to be more comfortable when you’re out on the water as well as take advantage of back support.

Best Value
ALPS Mountaineering Explorer +XT Seat
  • Lightweight and packable seat with shoulder straps for easy transport
  • Open- and closed-cell foam with 2.25" thick bottom seat for maximum comfort
  • Webbing straps will allow you to adjust to your favorite sitting position
  • Additional pocket on bottom of the seat is great for extra storage items like magazines, suntan lotion or a blanket
  • Dimensions: 17" W x 33" D x 2.25" Thick, Weight: 2 lbs. 13 oz.

The ALPS Mountaineering Explorer +XT Seat is designed to attach to the canoe benches and helps to comfortably keep you in place as well as offering back support when you’re out on the water.

It’s even suitable to use after you’re finished paddling for the day, for example if you’re canoe camping or portaging, and you want somewhere comfortable to sit on the ground after a long day of adventuring.

For comfort, it features a 2.25 inch layer of closed cell foam as padding and there’s even a pocket on the back of the seat that you can use for holding any small accessories, maps, your smartphone, or anything else that you want to quickly access while you’re in your canoe.

It’s possible to adjust your seating position thanks to the webbing straps on the side that attach the backrest to the main seating area and these allow you to sit more upright or take advantage of more of a recline depending on what’s comfortable for you.

When it comes to carrying it around there are handles on the top that you can use for carrying it by hand or alternatively you could use the strap system and wear it just like a backpack for hands-free carrying.

The mesh on the sides not only helps to keep you contained when you’re sitting down but you can also put in some small accessories into the chair when it’s folded up so that when you’re carrying it they don’t fall out.

To keep it shut during transport or when you’re not using it there’s even a buckle that helps to prevent it from opening up if you’re carrying it or just leaving it in storage.

Highest Quality
Rio Gear My Pod Seat, Steel Blue
  • Four-position reclining backrest
  • Includes carry strap and reinforced attachment straps for tethering to bleachers and canoe seats
  • Folds flat for carrying and storage
  • Supports 225 lbs. yet weighs only 3.5 lbs
  • Heating pack pockets; includes two heating packs

The Rio Adventure My Pod Seat is a fairly basic and simple seating solution if you’re looking for a more comfortable way to remain seated on your canoe.

It features a reclining backrest that can be positioned in 4 different positions depending on your comfort preferences and it also comes equipped with reinforced attachment straps (velcro) that you can use for attaching the seat to the benches in your canoe.

Carrying it is quite easy thanks to the carrying strap that’s attached to the seat so it’s possible to just toss it over your shoulder if you’re portaging or carry it in your hands if you don’t need your hands-free.

When you’re not using it as a seat it will fold flat and this is the position you’re wanted in when you’re carrying it and when it’s folded up completely flat it can also be used for sitting on the ground if you happen to be camping or spending time outdoors canoeing around.

As for comfort, both the lower and upper part of the seat are padded and it has a weight limit capacity of 225 pounds.

I would definitely recommend taking a look at the Rio Adventure My Pod Seat if you’re looking for something basic to use in your canoe for a little bit more comfort or if you’re not doing that much canoeing at all and you just need something to use whenever you’re out on the water.

ALPS Mountaineering Weekender Seat

The ALPS Mountaineering Weekender Seat is another option that I would recommend taking a look at if you’re looking for a canoe chair to use for more comfort and support when you’re out paddling around.

On the bottom it has webbing straps so that you can attach it to the benches in your canoe to help keep it in place and for your comfort it comes equipped with a 0.5-inch closed cell foam padding.

On the back of the chair is a large mesh pocket and this can be used for storing anything that you need quick access to such as your smartphone, knife, whistle, maps, or any other small accessories.

Depending on your preferences it’s possible to choose from a few different seating positions since the back is adjustable thanks to the webbing straps that allow you to adjust how upright or how far reclined you’re able to sit.

To make it easier to carry it even comes with carrying handles so that you can just carry it with you from your car to your canoe or just hook it onto something using a carabiner if you’re portaging.

I also think that this is quite nice to have if you’re going canoeing and you’re planning on spending a night or more camping because you can just use this rather than having to sit directly on the ground.

Crazy Canoe Pad III Cushion

The Crazy Canoe Pad III Cushion is what I would recommend checking out if maybe you don’t want a full-blown chair but you just want a little bit of padding for your butt when you’re out on the canoe.

This is a small, lightweight cushion that comes with straps so that it can be attached to the bench in your canoe and kept in place when you’re sitting on it.

The cushion itself offers 1 inch of memory foam padding and the exterior material is made from a ripstop nylon that’s water-resistant and durable as well.

If you’re carrying it around you can just carry it using the straps and it’s also not that big or bulky so you can just leave it attached to the canoe bench without having to remove it for transporting or portaging.

I would definitely recommend taking a look at this cushion if you just want a little bit more padding on your butt if you’re spending a lot of time on the canoe out on the water and you don’t think you’re going to need a dedicated chair seating setup.

YakPads Gel-filled Canoe Seat

Depending on the style of canoe that you have it’s possible to place the YakPads Gel-filled Canoe Seat right on top of your aluminum, bucket, or webbed canoe seat for more comfort.

The seat itself is gel-filled and it even comes with a nifty water bottle holster that you can use for keeping a water bottle in quick access reach for whenever you get thirsty out on the water.

Not only does it help to provide some padding from the cold seats but it also helps to reduce any pressure points of your butt on the hard canoe material and also helps to evenly distribute seat pressure so that you’re more comfortable when you’re sitting upright for extended periods of time.

On the underneath is a non-skid backing to help keep it in place and prevent the cushion from slipping around when you’re sitting down.

I would definitely recommend taking a look at the YakPads Gel-filled Canoe Seat if you’re looking for a cushion rather than going with a dedicated seat that comes with a backrest.


If you’re spending a lot of time out on the water I recommend checking out my article on the best life jacket for kayaking as there are also some suitable choices to use if you’re canoeing.

You might also want to take a look at what I think are some of the best fishing coolers if you’re planning on doing any fishing.