Commenting on the lap bars: they are cushioned and not uncomfortable. They sit a little above your lap like any other bar would, and I don't remember bumping into it at all throughout the ride. They don't change the experience of the ride, except that as they work out loading bugs the ride has some start/stop issues. The first time we rode it the ride stopped about 4 times, only for a minute or so, but the recording about staying in your seats would come on and ruin the music. And the boats backed up a bit more than usual waiting to enter the loading area. There were multiple supervisors or someone similar, not really sure their job, that were standing at the loading dock watching on that day and still observing 2 days later when we went back on it [and the ride was still stopping occasionally then too]. Though the cast members do tell you to lower your lap bars, they do not come by and check that they are locked [though I did see them glance at everyone to make sure they were down].
After once, we went on it again since there was only a 5 minute wait afterall and it IS our favorite ride. Then we rode Jungle Cruise since we had missed it on day one. After that, we headed off to Epcot.
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Disney's Animal Kingdom
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney California Adventure
Universal Studios Florida
Universal's Islands of Adventure
Universal Studios Hollywood