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I have been pedaling the Coosa FD for six months now. The pedaling concept is new to me but I will add that when I have traveled and kayaked fished with friends and had to borrow their spare kayak. The spare usually ended up being a Hobie that has a different system then the Flex Drive that Jackson has introduced. The Hobie Mirage Drive is more like a push and pull system when compared to the Jackson Flex Drive is very similar to riding a bicycle. The intent of this article is not to compare the two but to tell my experience from shifting from a pedaling experience that might have to one percent of my on the water experience to a 100 percent experience with the Coosa FD.


After a several trials on the water I got winded pretty easily when pedaling. There were several issues that contributed to this. Initially I felt that I was a stronger paddler when compared to pedaling a kayak. However the more exploration trips that I took; I would adjust the distance the seat was from the Flex Drive. This adjustment continued till I determined that the cycle motion needed to pedal the kayak was smooth and efficient. But I was still feeling that there pedaling could be more efficient then I was experiencing.

I started looking at the back of the ergo seat that is supplied with the Coosa FD. My initial setup for the back position of the seat was for my position for when I would be paddling in my other kayaks.  In this position my knees would hit against my PFD, at this point I started to understand why other anglers that fished from pedal kayaks were making the change from a regular PDF to those PDFs that inflate when you fall into the water. Before changing out the Astral Ronny Fisher for an inflatable PFD; I started studying various photos of kayakers pedaling. One thing that I noticed was they were not pedaling sitting upright but rather with a slight angle away from the drive system that they were using. I made adjustment that eventually I felt that my position was too extreme. Once I figured out my ultimate position that I was not hitting the PFD with my knees and I left more efficient in the pedaling motion, I decided to validate the distance between the drive unit and the seat position.

Once I had this angle of the back seat support figured out and the distance between the Flex Drive and the Ergo seat I was feeling stronger as well. This brings me to the third issue that I had. I have been paddling a kayak for almost eight and a half years when I got the Coosa FD. Using proper paddling techniques I was a stronger paddler over the pedaling. Will six months on the water using the Flex Drive, learning the proper seat position both for distance from the drive and the back of the seat angle I grew stronger and more confident pedaling.

One of the great things about the Flex Drive is that my fishing range has opened up more water for fishing and exploring. This might sound silly but it feels like I’m catching more fish as well but who knows. Maybe I’m becoming a better angler. Now that spring is here and summer is just around the corner; just searching for those demo days that the dealer put on and give the Coosa FD a try. I have to believe that you will fall into love with the Flex Drive in a short amount of time like I did.