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Sit on Tops and Inflatables

Sit on Top kayaking, together with inflatable kayaks and canoes, is one of the fastest growing areas in canoe sport. They provide a gateway for people with no previous experience on the water try out the sport for the first time.

Sit on Top kayaks allow you to travel bigger distances with minimal technique, enabling the paddler to get easily into the water. At the same time, their stability and ease of use make them accessible to a wide range of people, while the ability to sit on rather than in removes the fear of capsizing.

Membership of British Canoeing and its associated federal bodies can provide significant benefits for people taking part in Sit on Top kayaking and gives you access to an extensive network of qualified coaches, affiliated clubs and centres.

Specific training:

  • Sit On Top Kayak Safety Award
  • Foundation Safety Rescue Training
  • White Water Safety Rescue Training
  • Coastal Navigation
  • 3 Star Personal Skills Awards
  • Intro Sea
  • Intro to Moving Water
  • Intro to Surf

Stay safe

Kayaking in sheltered waters is a great way to gain experience but it’s easy to underestimate the potential hazards. Ideal locations are small lakes, canals, slow moving rivers (be aware of weirs) and sheltered harbours where there is little chance of being blown out to sea.

To ensure you, your family and friends stay safe while enjoying your paddling experience here are some basic top tips and equipment recommendations. Always:

  • Undertake suitable training in how to use all of your equipment
  • Learn and practise techniques to get back on board your kayak should you capsize
  • Ensure you are a confident swimmer
  • Ensure your kayak and equipment are well maintained and ready for the water
  • Check the hatches and drain plugs are secure and watertight, paddle is in good condition, seat is firmly attached and all gear secured safely
  • Wear a suitable approved personal flotation device (PFD)
  • Ensure your PFD fits correctly and all the straps are done up securely and use crotch straps if fitted
  • Wear suitable clothing for the season and conditions, such as a wetsuit/drysuit and layered clothing; wear a hat and gloves in cold conditions
  • Carry a suitable means of calling for help (waterproof and fully charged phone/VHF radio or flares)
  • Take a drink and snack with you (energy bars, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate)
  • Paddle in a group, where possible
  • Tell someone back on land where you are going and what time you will be back

Ensure you carry a whistle attached by a suitable length cord to your PFD.