10 Reasons To Take Up Canoeing

by Molly Dixon

There are literally endless amounts of water sports a person can do. From beginner to expert, you don’t have to be the fittest and quick on your toes to be able to enjoy and maybe master a water sport! Canoeing is one of the many water sports that everyone can get involved in, no matter what your age and ability.

The UK has so many lengthy, scenic and wonderful canals and rivers to see and there are now about 2,200 miles of navigable canals and rivers throughout the United Kingdom.

“I can’t think of any boat puns, canoe?” 

Lately, the popularity of boating activities has risen by 3.4% since 2002 and according to the latest research, a record 3.96 million UK adults, about 7.4% of the UK adult population, participated in one or more of 12 core boating activities in 2017, the highest number recorded since this research was first launched in 2002. And despite challenges to consumer confidence and an unsettled economy in the wake of Brexit negotiations, boat ownership has also increased, with more than 690,000 boat owning households in the UK.

Here we’ve listed 10 very good reasons why you should ditch the running next to busy roads and start taking in some of Britains most beautiful sites by water – whilst getting fit and strong!

01. It’s cheaper than you think. When you start canoeing, you don’t need to go and buy all of the equipment at once. Many canoe clubs will offer free taster sessions and hire out equipment at very reasonable rates.

02. It’s a great way to connect with nature. When you’re on the water wildlife is all around you, and you’ll find your self spotting things that walkers or cyclists hardly get to see!

03. You’ll meet interesting and like-minded people. When finding and getting stuck into any hobby there will always be people wanting to do the same when getting involved in something like canoeing, you’ll meet lovely like-minded people and form friendships, so you can possibly carry on the sport together! That’s the kind of freedom that the clubs give you too, to be able to enjoy being on the water with anyone and everyone.

04. It can help you catch the big and hidden fish. Now, this is something many people don’t think about, owning a canoe doesn’t have to just be scenic trips down the river, you can also put your skills to good use and boat to where all the fish are. If you don’t happen to own a boat with an engine it’s a great way to get near the rocks on the beach and start fishing!

05. It gets your adrenaline going – or not. When you go out on the waters, you decided what pace you want to go at. Not every time has to be an exhilarating, heart pumping experience trying not to capsize, sometimes you can just drift around with the sun on your face and enjoy every second connecting with nature and air around you.

06. The whole family can join in. Canoeing makes a change to the family bike ride or a trip to the park. If you can get the whole family participating it can be a lot of fun and something everyone looks forward too, why not take a picnic and make a day of it?

07. Paddling gives you something to look forward to. Next time you’re staring out of the window of your dreary office block imagining you were somewhere else, picture yourself leaving the office, driving to your nearest waterway and pulling on a wetsuit. Imagine getting into a canoe and floating out onto perfectly still water where nothing else matters.

08. It will broaden your horizons. Once you’ve mastered the basics, one of the best things about canoeing is the myriad of different places it can take you. Explore the canals and rivers in this country or set off to paddle the length of the Zambezi. The options are endless.

09. stress relief. The stress of every day is sometimes slightly overwhelming, and sometimes going for a drive or to the cinema with friends just doesn’t cut it. Why not try a water sport for real peace of mind and a huge calming factor and distraction for when life just feels like its getting too much.

10. Because it’s fun! The energy you get from exercise and being outdoors is absolutely priceless, and you might find you have a new found love and passion for canoeing. We hate to say we told you so!

 

If you’re feeling inspired and want to take up some canoeing lessons or join a club, we’ve listed some great clubs and laces to start aroung Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire!

Hinckley Canoe Club

Hinckley Canoe Club is a small, friendly, local Canoeing, Kayaking and SUP (Stand Up Paddle-boarding) club based in Hinckley, Leicestershire.  A great place for the experienced and for newbies.

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Open Canoe Association

Members of the OCA explore, cherish, protect, and enjoy the diverse waterways of the UK and beyond. A great way to enjoy wildlife and feel the calming effects of paddling along streams.

 

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PaddlePlus Canoe Club

PaddlePlus is a family friendly paddlesport club based at Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre. They meet all year round und on Thursday evenings and welcome new visitors.

 

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Soar Boating Club Paddlers

A group of friendly paddlers who enjoy canoeing or kayaking around Normanton on Soar and the surrounding area. They meet at Soar Boating Club and paddle for around 2 hours depending on ability, varying the routes so as not to paddle the same stretch of water every week.

 

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Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre

Adventurous outdoor activity experiences designed to stimulate, educate and motivate young people and others at affordable prices in a challenging and safe environment.

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Holme Pierrepont Canoe Club

At Holme Pierrepont Canoe Club you will find a warm welcome and a group of paddlers who are ready to help and inspire you. Whether it is getting started, learning the latest freestyle moves, serious training for competitions or cruising the waterways in an open boat or kayak, there will be something for you.

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The Mill Adventure Base

The Mill Adventure Base is a purpose built, urban adventure centre situated at Kings Mill Reservoir, Sutton in Ashfield. As part of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Outdoor and Environmental Education Service, the base offers a multitude of adventure activities to suit all abilities and requirements. This includes canoeing expeditions on Kingsmill Reservoir which is a vast reservoir in Sutton-in-Ashfield.

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