A spray deck is made of water-tight cloth or neoprene. It is sized to fit over the opening, or cockpit, of the canoe or kayak, with holes for the waists of the passengers. The spray deck generally seals around the cockpit's rim and each passenger's torso.
Each opening in a spray deck must make a reasonably watertight seal. The seal varies in quality. The deck can be made to seal in several ways, including elastic fabric, a hem containing an elastic cord and drawstring, and both.