If you are already a racing or competent paddler and interested in joining the club please get in touch here. We will arrange for one of our coaches to assess your level, and either find the right training group for you or suggest that you do one of our beginners’ courses. As all our training is done in racing boats with rudders you will need to be assessed in one of these – we can provide one if you do not have your own.
If you are new to kayaking, we run regular courses through the summer to get you started. No previous experience is necessary but you should be able to swim 50 metres and the recommended minimum age is 8. The beginners’ courses are aimed at covering the basics of paddling and preparing you to start training towards your first race. You will progress from a plastic boat to a ruddered boat and be able to execute basic support strokes, manoeuvre your boat around obstacles and control your boat safely.
This year we are trialing a new system. We will have a number of free Open Afternoons, when you can come along and try paddling, with no commitment. if you would then like to take it further, there will then be a series of up to six sessions early on Saturday mornings, after which you should be ready to join one of the training groups if you’d like to join the club.
Our next Open Afternoon is Saturday 7 September, which will be followed by our third set of beginner sessions. Please note, we don’t run courses through the middle of summer as the canal gets very busy, particularly around mid-August when the village host the Fairport Convention Festival.
No special clothing is required. We recommend you wear running or sportswear (not jeans, fleeces or woolly jumpers) with a pair of light trainers or water shoes. Paddlers should bring a cagoule (in case of wet weather), a towel and a complete change of clothing for afterwards.
The club can provide buoyancy aids, paddles and boats for the course and for new members. As your paddling progresses, the club coaches will advise on buying your own equipment as and when you need it.
If the course dates really don’t work for you then please get in touch here. It is sometimes possible to organise coaching on a one-to-one basis or in a small group – please note there will be a charge for this.
For more information on our Membership please click here