Introduction to Kayaking

The following PDF documents were used as handouts for a fourteen night class. I have updated most of them but some of them really are notes rather than standalone document.

There is no substitute for on-the-river or in-the-pool kayak training. These classes are not easy to find in Kansas. I hope these documents will provide you with information to help you get you started.

You don't need to know everything to get started kayaking.  Join up with some experienced kayakers and listen to their advice and get their help on the river.  If possible test several kayaks and paddles before making a purchase. Enroll in a class. Read kayak books. Watch kayak training videos. 


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Introduction/Forward  - Different types of kayaks, equipment, and training needed.

Basic Skills and Strokes - A checklist of skills, strokes and maneuvers.

Trainer Kayak Selection - Why we choose whitewater kayaks for basic training.

Hypothermia  - Notes from class.  How to recognize, avoid, and first aid.

Video - Cold Water Boot Camp - Learn effects of cold water on volunteer swimmers.

Paddle Clothing - What to wear and how much to wear.

Hazards and Hydrology - Notes from class.  Not a complete document.

Parts of a Kayak - Notes from class.  List of different parts of a kayak.

Camping for Kayak Trips - Information to help the beginning camper.

Selecting a First Kayak - Help in selecting a recreational or crossover type kayak.

Choosing a Kayak Paddle - Opinions, suggestions, information about paddles.

Physical & Medical Considerations  - Have a safe trip.

Introduction to Rescue - List of knowledge and skills you should acquire

Sea Kayak Rescues - Information and outline for a sea kayak rescue workshop.

Risk Management - Notes from a session on Risk Management.