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Smart Start: Intro to Sea Kayaking

with: Olympic Outdoor Center

Learn the basics of sea kayaking and get comfortable in a kayak. After an introduction on our dock, you'll head out on the protected water of Liberty Bay to learn essential strokes and skills. Read More 


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Please Note:
Kayaks must be fully compartmentalized (watertight bulkheads front & back). Those not renting will also need to bring a life jacket, bilge pump & paddle float.

Smart Start: Intro to Sea Kayaking


Why take our introduction kayak class? By taking this course you are setting yourself up to spend more time out on the water by reducing fatigue through efficient paddling technique and establishing good habits in regard to posture and boat fit that will dramatically increase your comfort while out on the water! This course provides an entry level kayaker a comprehensive introduction to kayaking, including capsize recovery.  We will work to provide our paddlers with the tools and education needed to safely and efficiently explore the diverse waters of the Puget Sound and beyond.

Your instructor will cover basic kayak safety, paddle strokes, how to fit a kayak and personal flotation device, proper stroke techniques, kayak nomenclature, basic design, body dynamics for efficient strokes, wet exits, capsize recovery (solo and assisted), how to choose a kayak for your needs, getting into and out of a kayak and other important basic skills to give you a strong foundation for a lifetime of paddling.

*No experience is necessary!

What's Covered:

  • Kayak nomenclature & basic design
  • Basic safety considerations
  • Forward Stroke
  • Reverse Stroke
  • Sweep Strokes, Forward and Reverse (Turning)
  • Draw Strokes, Static and Sculling (Move the Kayak laterally)
  • Wet Exits
  • Capsize Recovery (Paddle Float Rescue, T-Rescue, Cowboy Rescue and Sling Rescue)
  • Kayak carries 
  • Loading and unloading a kayak
  • Launching and landing

What to Bring:

  • Full water bottle(s)
  • Lunch
  • Sunscreen
  • Sun glasses with strap
  • Weather-appropriate clothing
  • Complete change of clothes (you can keep these in your car)
  • Jacket (Windproof/Waterproof)
  • Feel free to bring a camera, but make sure it's in a waterproof case.
  • Insulation to be worn under your dry suit (long sleeves and pants. Synthetic materials are the best)
  • Towel
  • Sense of Adventure!

Where to Meet:

Olympic Outdoor Center Poulsbo: 18743 Front St NE, Poulsbo, WA 98370


Itinerary

Class starts at 9:00am, but please give yourself a little time to park, change and make your way to our facility. We will wrap up at 4pm.

We will start class on our dock. There we will go over Kayak nomenclature, proper kayak and PFD fit and answer any questions that may arise. From the dock we will make our way onto the water and paddle within the protection of the marina to cover basic strokes, the environment and safety.

We will break for lunch around 12pm to refuel and get ready to practice wet exits and capsize recovery.  Once we all have had a chance to practice the learned recovery techniques we will make our way back to the dock and learn how to properly carry our kayaks and how to safely and effectively load and unload them from a vehicle.


What makes Olympic Outdoor Center a good choice?

  • Our staff are professionally Trained by ACA certified Instructors
  • Our Instructors are CPR and First Aid Certified.
  • We keep a low Instructor to student ratio for lots of individual instruction.
  • Olympic Outdoor Center has been fostering paddling enthusiasts for over 25 years!
Note: Recreational kayaks (under 12') are not allowed in this class. All kayaks must be fully compartmentalized (bulkheads or flotation front & back).
Paddlers who bring their own equipment will also need to bring a Life Jacket, a Bilge Pump and a Paddle Float.

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