What equipment is needed for canoeing or kayaking?

canoe kayak equipment
File photo credit: wikimedia commons

by Hevina Kaur

What equipment is needed for canoe-kayak?

So you're all ready to start kayaking but there's a problem. You don't know what equipment you need! Not to worry, we've put together a list of 5 essential equipment needed for your Canoe or Kayak.

1. A Paddle

This is pretty self-explanatory. But what isn't is how a different paddle is needed depending on whether you’re going white water kayaking, flatwater kayaking or canoeing. Lucky for recreational users, the school or outdoor activity centre would be able to provide you with the right paddle for your kayaking or canoeing trip. 

2. A Canoe or kayak

Once again, if you’re going to a centre to learn, you really don’t have to worry about this too much. And if you're going with a partner, do be sure to choose a 2 person canoe. Generally in Singapore, you have the choice of a solo canoe and a 2 person canoe. A good place to start out is the Paddle Lodge at MacRitchie Reservoir.

3. A Lifejacket or Personal Floatation Device (PFD)

A safety essential will ensure should you capsize, you will find yourself floating. Even if you panic or are disorientated, your safety will still be guaranteed. I cannot stress how important this is, no matter how good a swimmer you are. 

Yes, it may be annoying to paddle wearing a lifejacker in the sweltering Singapore heat. But you should always put safety first, even ahead of comfort. You never know what's going to happen. Sould an accident occur and you lose your kayak, you don't want to be left in open water treading water for hours till help arrives.

4. A Helmet 

This is particularly important if you're kayaking in anything other than calm and shallow water. Although this does not describe the sea in Singapore, its still important to know, should you try kayaking in other countries.

When it comes to white water kayaking, helmets are absolutely essential as there is a chance you may hit rocks. Once again, safety isn’t something to cut corners around so make sure you have a good and sturdy helmet if the situation calls for it.

5. Attire

You will be out in the hot sun so as tempted as you will be to wear something sleeveless, you really don’t want to get sun burnt so long sleeves are the way to go. Try to wear a material that doesn’t soak up water easily either, you don’t want to be a walking drenched towel. Think dry fit. 

And there you have it! A list of all the things you’ll be needing to start your canoe or kayak experience. This sport makes for a great day of outdoor fun so grab a few of your best friends and just have fun!

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