The Itiwit x100+ inflatable kayak is a further development of the popular Itiwit Touring kayak series from Decathlon. It is a 2-person inflatable kayak with drop-stitch floor, which can be paddled by two persons or single. Decathlon promotes the Itiwit x100+ as a kayak for occasional tours of 2-3 hours, which offers a good combination of performance and stability. We have paddled the Itiwit kayak and in this article we would like to tell you about our first impressions and experiences on the water.
365 cm | 11’1”
103 cm | 3’3”
190 kg | 418.9 lbs
67 x 40 cm | 2’2” x 1’3”
PVC Tarpaulin, Polyester
16 kg | 33.3 lbs
0.2 bar | 3 PSI (sides),
0.35 bar | 5 PSI (floor)
Which model has been reviewed?
Itiwit x100+ 2-Seater from 2020
How did we organize the review?
The Itiwit x100+ was provided to us by Decathlon, a French manufacturer and distributor of sports equipment and clothing. Itiwit is a brand for the paddle sport of Decathlon. Our review is independent of the manufacturer or shop and reflects our own opinion of the boat.
How intensively has the product been tested?
2 bars = min. 1 day/ 2 half-day tours
3 bars = min. 4 tours
4 bars = min. 8 tours
5 bars = min. 12 tours (very intense)
Where have we tested the product?
Table of Contents
First impressions and assembly
The Itiwit x100+ comes in a well-sized backpack that is comfortable to carry. A very useful feature of the backpack are the outside pockets where you can stow your paddle. The front of the backpack can be opened almost completely with the zipper. This way you can easily take out the boat and pack it back in without any big efforts. For the total price of the boat we think it is great that a backpack and not just a carry bag. The backpack is functional and has a good quality.
The Itiwit x100+ has two separate side chambers and a removable drop-stitch floor. Before inserting the floor we inflated it slightly and then put it into the boat. The floor is attached at the bow and stern with a strap click fastener, so that it remains well in its right position without moving around.
What is Drop-Stitch?
With the Drop-Stitch technology, the upper and lower inner walls of the air chamber are additionally woven with nylon threads. This is the only way to achieve a significantly higher air pressure than with air chambers without the tangled nylon threads. The air chamber thus achieves very good dimensional stability and rigidity. The Drop-Stitch technology is very common for SUP boards (Stand Paddling Boards) and is used more and more for inflatable kayaks. Learn more about this type of inflatable boats, in our buyer’s guide for Drop-Stitch kayaks.
The floor is inflated to 0.35 bar (5.1 PSI), which was an easy job with the Decathlon air pump. The side chambers are then inflated to 0.2 bar (2.9 PSI). For a beginner kayak in this price range, such operating pressures are hard to find. For example, Sevylor inflatable kayaks are in a similar price range but they only have an air pressure of 0.1 bar (1.5 PSI). The higher the air pressure of the air chambers, the stiffer the kayak and better the performance on the water.
The kayak has reasonable valves that can be closed or opened by a spring (same mechanism as on Innova and Grabner inflatable boats). The handling is very simple. The backpack even contains a valve key so that it can be removed and cleaned or retightened if necessary.
It takes less than 5 minutes to inflate the air chambers. After inflation, three small skegs are attached to the bottom of the boat. A skeg is very typical for inflatable kayaks to improve straight-line stability. We have not yet paddled an inflatable kayak with three skegs. It is very likely that the Itiwit x100+ has more skegs than other models, as it has a remarkably wide and flat hull, which would otherwise be very turn-happy when paddling.
Depending on whether you want to configure your kayak for 1 person or 2 persons, you position the seat. The seats have a high inflatable seat cushion. This allows a raised seating position so that the wide side tubes are not in the way when paddling. You can also inflate the seat a little softer or harder, depending on your preference, to find the comfortable seat firmness for you. The seat is attached to the bottom of the boat by the Velcro strip, which prevents it from slipping while paddling. The Velcro strips on the bottom are sufficiently long for the front and rear seats, so that you can vary the position of the seats.
The robust backrest is attached to the side chambers with a belt on both sides. The position of the backrest is also adjustable. All in all, we really like the seats. They look comfortable, have a good workmanship and promise a good grip when paddling. We are curious to see how they feel once we are on the water.
The outer skin of the kayak makes a robust impression. It consists of a polyester fabric coated with PVC Tarpaulin. Due to this robust outer skin, no textile cover is necessary to protect the tubes, as with the Itiwit Touring or Sevylor Adventure. The boat dries more quickly after use (significantly less risk of mould growth) and is easier to repair in the event of a defect. The permanently integrated side tubes are also equipped with a pressure relief valve, so that it is impossible to damage the boat due to excessive inflation or heat exposure.The drop-stitch floor, seats and other parts of the boat can be re-ordered and replaced in case of a defect.
The drop-stitch floor has a recess on each side where drain valves are located. For example, if you are paddling on the beach in the summer and a wave does come into the boat, the water will run off when the valves are open. This way no water will accumulate in the boat.
The Itiwit x100+ also offers important features of a good kayak. At the top of the bow and stern there is a carrying handle to carry the boat to the water. What we really like are the side carrying handles. If you are paddling the kayak on your own, you can easily put it in the water yourself.
At the bow and stern there are small spraycovers which provide additional protection against spray water. Furthermore, the kayak offers possibilities to fix luggage or to store small items. On the stern there is a large luggage net where you can put a large backpack or dry bag. At the front of the stern and at the back of the backrests there are small net pockets for small items, which are easily accessible when paddling. Such features seem less important at first sight, but in practice such details prove to be very useful and you don’t want to miss them.
You can also use the boat backpack and store all your stuff there. This even fits in the rear of the boat if the rear seat is placed far forward. You can attach the backpack to the luggage net.
We also attach the backpack with its grey compression strap to the orange luggage net, so that in case of a capsize the backpack would not sink. Note, however, that the boat backpack is not waterproof.
Review of the Itiwit X100+ on the water
The Itiwit kayak has a very high stability due to the wide and flat hull. You can get into the kayak without any worries. Due to the drop-stitch construction it feels very stable when you get in. We have paddled the kayak as a single and two persons configuration.
The Itiwit X100+ as a 1-person kayak
If you place the seat in the middle of the boat, you can use it as a solo kayak. The carrying handle on the side tube makes it very easy to carry the boat to the water.
Since the three fins are very small, you can already get into shallow water and paddle without touching down. Should there be a shore or a river section with shallow depth, you will touch down very late with the small fins. Nevertheless, we recommend on rivers with very low level to omit the fins to avoid unnecessary grounding.
During paddling, the kayak lies extremely stable on the water. Jerky movements, adjusting the seat on the water, even standing up can in no way cause the boat to capsize. We have never paddled such a stable kayak before.
In favour of stability the kayak loses performance on the water. The straight-line stability is only moderate with the three fins. The kayak also glides only slightly through the water when you stop paddling. Due to the wide side tubes we found a 220 cm long double-bladed paddle a bit too short. It is possible to paddle with it, but a paddle at least 230 cm or 240 cm long would be more comfortable, so that it is easier to get into the water with the paddle blades.
Despite the three skegss, the kayak has good manoeuvrability. However, a complete turn (i.e. 180°) is only possible with many paddle strokes.
The Itiwit X100+ as a 2-person kayak
The kayak is very quickly reconfigured into a 2-person kayak. The front and rear carrying handles make it easy for two people to carry the Itiwit x100 to the water. The carrying handles are placed nice and far outside.
When paddling as 2-person kayak, the stability is also very good. The performance on the water is noticeably better with a two persons, as the kayak lies more in the water and thus forms a longer waterline. So the speed and the straight-line stability are better.
You can reach a speed of between 2,5 and 3,1 mph when paddling comfortably. Compared to other kayaks, the straight-line stability is not really good, but still okay. Here you should not forget that the kayak with a length of 365 cm and a width of 103 cm is not designed for fast but rather for calm and stable paddling tours.
What surprised us is the space available. For a 2-person kayak the Itiwit x100+ is not very long. Nevertheless, as large persons we had enough space inside and enough legroom. The seating position is really good in a kayak. This is normally something you don’t get in this price range. The seats give a good hold and enough comfort for a nice paddling tour. Due to the integrated drain valves and the raised seat position you will never really sit in the wet. In addition, the seat backs give good support and sufficient comfort for a leisurely paddle.
If the seat cushion of the rear seat is firmly inflated, it is difficult to move it far back to the end of the Velcro strip on the floor. The interior is somewhat narrower at the rear and front due to the design. In the photo below you can see the maximum rear position when the seat cushion is fully inflated. If you still want more legroom in the back, you have to let some air out of the seat cushion so that it can be moved further back.
On one of our recent trips on a hot summer day, we also really appreciated the Itiwit x100+ as a bath boat. We took the seats out and paddled a bit into the deep water. The double paddle can be attached to the paddle holder on the side tube. Since you can stand in the boat, jumping in from the boat into the water is no problem and also really fun. Since the boat is so tilt-resistant, you can also get back out of the water into the boat.
Itiwit x100+ 2 seater vs 3 seater
The Itiwit x100+ 2-seater is also available as a larger variant, i.e. 3 seater and 4 seater. The kayaks are identical in terms of equipment, air pressure, tipping stability and material. They differ only in price, color scheme, dimensions, load limit and weight.
We have tested the 3 seater and compared it to the 2 seater. The Itiwit x100+ 3 seater gives you the possibility to go paddling with three people. With two adults and one child, it offers plenty of space. For three adults, the space is significantly limited, but for short (2 to 3 hours) and leisurely tours still possible.
In addition, the 3 seater can also be interesting for you as a 2 seater kayak, if the load limit and the space offered by the 2-seater seems too little. The 3 seater is another 45 cm longer and has a 50 kg higher load capacity. The rear paddler has much more room to stretch his legs. In addition, the extra space in the middle can be used to carry more luggage or even a dog. With two people, the 3 seater is about 0.5 km/h faster and drifts less when you stop paddling. However, we would not recommend the 3-seater simply because of the minimally better driving characteristics. If you don’t need the extra space and payload, the Itiwit x100+ 2 seater is a good choice.
Dismantling the Itiwit x100+
The dismantling of the kayak was quick and easy. All you have to do is open the three valves. Most of the air escapes by itself. The remaining air can either be pressed or pumped out. We normally pump out the remaining air. If you use the Itiwit air pump to pump out the remaining air, you have to disconnect the pressure gauge.
Remove the drop-stitch floor and fold it back up as originally. Then fold the kayak once lengthwise and place the folded drop-stitch floor on top. Finally fold them together to a packable size. The folded kayak fits back into the supplied backpack right away thanks to the large opening. Squeezing is not necessary here. There is even room for the air pump on the side of the backpack. Before closing the backpack, you still put the two seats and three fins in.
According to the user’s manual, the double paddle is stored in the outer side pockets next to the boat, seats and air pump. This did not work with us, because the backpack was already too tightly filled.
Strengths and weaknesses of the Itiwit X100+
The Itiwit x100+ is one of the most stable inflatable kayaks we have paddled so far. Thanks to the wide hull and drop-stitch bottom, you can even stand up in the boat without capsizing. The entry and exit is also very safe and due to the flat fins already possible in shallow water.
Unfortunately, when dismantling and wiping dry after another tour, we had to find that the bottom with the side tube is not glued cleanly in case of our model. This had had no effect on the functionality of the boat so far, but it is still unsightly. When asked, Decathlon assured us that such processing errors do not usually occur. Nevertheless, we recommend that you always check the quality of workmanship (especially in the glued joints) of the model when buying an inflatable kayak (regardless of the brand).
Otherwise, Decathlon offers a robust and well thought-out kayak for the price. However, those who want to make long distances on standing water with the kayak will have less fun with the Itiwit x100+.
+ high air pressure and thus a good stiffness for a beginner kayak + extremely stable against tipping + safe and comfortable entry and exit due to drop-stitch floor + drop-stitch floor is replaceable + thoughtful details (e.g. side carrying handles, pockets on the back of the seats, …) + very comfortable and plenty of space inside + robust boat skin + comfortable seats with sufficient back support + solid transport backpack + very suitable as a bathing boat + spare parts can be reordered
– wide and hull and therefore slower – moderate straight running – on our model the bottom with the side tubes was not sufficiently or improperly glued (so far no effect on the functionality of the kayak) – no foot braces
Conclusion on the Itiwit x100+
Decathlon offers with the Itiwit x100+ a very functional and solid kayak. It is not a cheap inflatable kayak. The price is justified in our opinion. We think the price-performance ratio is very good. It was our first Itiwit inflatable kayak we reviewed and we have to say that Decathlon has launched a good recreational kayak for beginners. It is perfect for paddling on a lake and enjoying the peace and quiet on the water. The boat looks very well thought out. The Itiwit x100+ is unrivalled in this price range.
Due to its high stability against tipping, the kayak is mainly aimed at beginners in paddling who would otherwise be afraid of capsizing. The inflatable kayak is also a clear recommendation for adults with children. Decathlon has also launched a 3-persons drop-stich kayak, which is aimed at small families. The Itiwit is a good kayak for small explorations on calm rivers and small lakes. If you want to do a day trip and paddle a long distance (over 20 km), you will have less fun with the kayak. Decathlon advertises a good combination of performance and stability. Stability clearly outweighs performance when you interpret performance as the speed of a kayak. The kayak makes a solid impression in terms of workmanship and robustness.
Alternatives to the Itiwit X100+
The Itiwit x100+ is not the only kayak from Itiwit. There is also the Touring series and we have also reviewed the 2 seater version. The performance on the water is quite similar but it takes much longer to dry due to the the polyester cover. Therefore, the boat is much cheaper.
And then there are also inflatable kayak brands like Intex and Sevylor, which are also well-known for entry-level kayaks.