Paddles: the most personal piece of gear you'll ever own is your paddle. when you want your own paddle, get advice and get the best you can, preferably with a straight shaft. Growing? Pay a bit more for an extending shaft like the ones at the club. Talk to Mark about where to source paddles.
Helmets: should fit well so they stay in place when knocked. Going to paddle under floodlights? Get a light coloured (white) one so we can find you when you swim.
Here's some basic easy to find stuff that's a good idea to have and use.
Club branded kit is highly fashionable and will make you the envy of all your friends.
Then a fairly waterproof kit bag and your own squeezy thing of hand sanitizer. If you wear spec's, a spec case so your 'Bans don't get crushed.
Towels are really useful. Some people like to have their own mat to stand on.
Your own roofrack straps are handy even if you don't have your own roofrack yet. Get good ones so you don't compromise your driver who is responsible for the safety of the load.
Keys: On string round your neck or in a waterproof pouch?
Mark: winter training at the club
Mark is wearing the usual thin shoes with no laces so he fits in his slalom boat. Long wetsuit trousers and a thick thermal layer under his paddling cag. This is waterproof and has wrist seals. His neoprene spray-deck helps keep him warm.
He is wearing a slim competition buoyancy-aid and a light-weight helmet.
Connor: an hour or so on the water in the summer.
Con is wearing tiny neoprene shoes and boardies and we hope he has something on under his cag-deck. A cagdeck is a combined cag and spray-deck which is lighter and slimmer fitting than seperates. He is wearing a slim-line competition buoyancy aid and a white helmet: great under flood lights.
How safe is Connor in this minimal gear?
Very safe in our opinion. He has the fitness and skill to keep moving and so keep warm and he hardly ever swims out of his boat so leg protection is not an issue for him.
Jon is kitted up for a winter river trip.
Jon wears chunky neoprene boots. His water-proof trousers and cag have seals so he stays completely dry. His buoyancy-aid has loads of pockets. Under all that, he is wearing thermal long-johns and a thin thermal tee-shirt and fleece jumper.
Jon's helmet is a bright colour so that we can see where he is as he swims down rapids. It's got great head coverage.
His spray-deck is seperate from his cag (ie it's not a cag-deck) because on a long day out, you never know when you might want to wriggle out of it.
Getting this gear on and off again can count as your daily 30 minutes of strenuous exercise.
Thursday 24th June
6.00pm Div 3 4 slalom
Thursday 24th June
Club session: 6.30pm
meet for river trip. Bingley to club. Contact Judith for a place.
Friday 25th June
11am litter picking the river banks at WLane with the Aire Rivers Trust
Just turn up
Tuesday 29th June
6pm Ladies sesh: an hour or so of fun in different boats, trying different things.
We'll try this for a few weeks and if it's popular, we'll keep on with it.
Sunday 8th July
Festival of Paddling
Watch this space!