Oru Kayak- Innovation on the Water

29 September 2015

Foldable isn't something that immediately comes to mind when you think of kayaks. Yet that's what Oru have created in a revolutionary piece of design that combines ancient ideas with space-age technology. If you like to get out on the water but don't like carrying around a huge boat on your back, or if you live in a flat, then this just might be the product for you.

The Story

Oru's folding kayaks began when designer and founder Anton Willis moved into a small San Francisco apartment, and had to put his fibreglass kayak into storage. Inspired by an article detailing recent advances in origami, the idea of a compact, foldable kayak came to him.

Sketches turned into paper models, then full-scale prototypes, and by 2012 the founders went to Kickstarter to try and get the money required to start producing the kayaks. Over 700 people helped contribute and now Oru has an assembly facility in California that has shipped thousands of kayaks all over the world. As the company grows, it retains its passion for the outdoors and its simple yet great design.

How Does it Work?

Kayaks were invented in the high Arctic thousands of years ago, and origami goes back 1500 years to Buddhist monks in Japan. Oru means 'to fold' in Japanese, and using a combination of these ancient principles, and modern materials and concepts, they have created something new and exciting. Made from a tough, resilient and abrasion-resistant polypropylene, it gives both protection and buoyancy for a safe, comfortable ride. The only seam is on the top of the boat, above the waterline, and it closes tight with a waterproof seal.


Oru BayThis is the original model that launched it all. It is 12 feet of pure grace and speed on the water, and a portable and compact box weighing just 12 kilograms everywhere else. Equally suited to beginners or experienced kayakers, it is stable enough for inexperienced users, while fast and sporty enough for experts.

The Bay is easy to assemble and can go from box to boat in just 5 minutes! Pack it in the boot of your car, check it onto a plane or hike with it on your back to get to that mountain lake that would normally be inaccessible. The opportunities are endless with the Oru Bay.

Oru Bay+: All the awesome features and concepts of the Bay, plus more! The Bay+ has a range of features for added comfort, convenience, and style. A new adjustable seat makes for a more comfortable ride, extra straps and a deck hatch give more storage options, stainless steel buckles streamline the assembly process and custom graphics give it some extra flair. 

Oru Coast/Coast+The Coast builds on the concepts of the previous models, and is a larger, 16 foot kayak suitable for longer, more serious expeditions and improved performance, yet still only weighs 14 kilograms when folded. Inspired by traditional Arctic kayaks, it has superb speed and handling. Equally at home in the Pacific Ocean and your local pond, the Coast is a great choice for kayakers. The Coast+ offers all this and more, with added features giving it more comfort, storage, control and safety.

Oru Going to Buy One?

Think Sport is proud to stock the Oru kayaks, so what are you waiting for? Shop our whole range of Oru Kayaks!