Freedom Kayaks


Freedom Kayaks Eric Muller

Eric Mueller

In the seven years since I developed Freedom Kayaks re-entry system, I have met and read about some truly incredible individuals. Individuals who have overcome enormous challenges and are, in my eyes, inspiring. Since building my prototype in 2003, I have had over 40 individuals try Freedoms Kayaks, challenged, and not challenged. From their reactions, emotions, experiences and comments, I can truly say that Freedom Kayaks are more than just a kayak to them.

I have been blessed with new friendships and a feeling that I have invented something that that will truly change lives in a positive way. I would like to share some stories that will better explain the some of the social, mental and physical impacts that this simple kayak has had on some truly inspirational people. But, first I would like to explain a little about Freedom Kayaks' EM1design.

Freedom Kayaks'
EMI adaptive kayak design came from a simple image, idea, and was created and developed to meet the needs and desires of the future users, including me. I have spent countless hours incorporating some of the smallest requests, and details into Freedom Kayaks' EM1 design. Some are small changes, but they make an enormous difference to our customers. And, they keep the true kayaking experience in focus.

Freedom Kayaks are not magical kayaks that will always stay up right. They do flip! I designed our adaptive kayaks so they would not hinder the true kayaking experience. And, tipping is part of this experience . . . it’s part of kayaking. The system focuses on two major points 1) the re-entry system and 2) the design (making an adaptive kayak look like a non-adaptive kayak!)

Although, Freedom Kayaks' system may not work for everyone, our system does work well for many, many people. Below are stories about remarkable individuals that have tried a Freedom Kayaks' EM1 adaptive kayak. Through their words, let me convey the social, mental and physical attributes that this ‘system’ has had on their lives.

Adam and Wesley

I would like to start with a young man named Adam, his parents (Nicky & Bob), and Wesly, (Adams service dog). Adam's parents signed him up to participate in a kayak lesson hosted by the Blaze Sports U.S.A Expo in Virginia Beach in 2007. Adam has M.S. and his parents Nicky and Bob where excited about Adam trying out kayaking. After a short introduction and pool demonstration, Adam was off in the EM1 kayak. At first it was slow and little awkward. But, Adam learned quickly. He was soon paddling back and forth in the pool, too fast for me to keep up swimming next to him. So, I stood at the edge of the pool watching. I remember getting a tap on the shoulder from Adam’s mom, tears in her eyes. She was thanking me. My first reaction was ‘what did I do?’ She went on to explain how important it was for Adam to exercise (for his mobility) and some of the recent battles they have. She said, "He’s exercised more today more than he has all week, and he is having so much fun. He doesn’t even realize what great exercise this is."

That was a conversation that I will never forget.
Chris C

I was reading the paper one day and in the sports section was a picture of Chris with gold medals around his neck from a recent Para game event for weight lifting. I, being the shy person I am, called the newspaper and requested his contact information. They gave me his e-mail address, and from there, we exchanged e-mails & phone calls. Eventually, a pool lesson with Chris in Freedom Kayaks' EM1 emerged. I remember him calling me a couple days before the lesson asking me if he could bring his son. I said sure. Chris did outstanding! He had never kayaked before. He literally rocked through the session. Within 10 minutes, he looked liked he had been paddling for years. Chris was in a auto accident that resulted in T-10 injury in 06’. Chris and I were in the pool talking, and his son swam over. He asked me if he would try it out. I said "Sure." Well, this little guy was a bit much for me to handle. Before long, he was running my kayak up the sides of the pool . . . having a blast though! It was clear to me that this little guy needed open water! I remember Chris in the pool watching his son paddle over to him and asking "Dad can we go kayaking sometime?"

And, I thought to myself how unbelievable it was to see a father and son get closer through kayaking!