Women’s paddlesports training opportunity
24 January 2023
New skills, job opportunities, inspiring other – do something different
So what’s this all about?
We’re offering six women the chance to try their hand at taking part in and learning to coach paddlesport at Lee Valley White Water Centre. They’ll receive training and gain recognised qualifications that can be used to continue their paddlesport journey and potentially offer some exciting job opportunities.
This will allow the selected women to experience the world of paddlesports, develop new skills and play a part in helping other women and girls get out onto the water.
This type of training would normally cost around £500 – but for the lucky six this will be fully funded and delivered by the partners of this project.
Who’s running the training programme?
Lee Valley Regional Park’s Sport and Active Recreation Team are working with British Canoeing, Better (who operate Lee Valley White Water Centre) and Lee Valley Paddlesports Club to deliver this training opportunity.
Details of the programme
The programme is open to women aged 18 and over (on 1 January 2023) and will run from early March 2023. It’s designed to give them the skills and experience needed to be a flatwater kayaker who can also then help and support getting other women on to the water.
No previous experience of paddling is necessary and while it’s helpful if they can swim, it isn't essential. However they do need to have a good level of water confidence as learning to paddle does occasionally include being in the water.
They’ll receive five full days of coaching sessions as well as some evening training sessions with Lee Valley Paddlesports Club. All the sessions will be held at Lee Valley White Water Centre.
At the end of these sessions they’ll be confident on the water, able to deliver effective kayaking session on flatwater. By the end they’ll have a British Canoeing (the National Governing Body) recognised qualification including the Foundation Safety and Rescue Training award and they’ll be a Paddlesport Instructor able to run still water taster and starter sessions on flatwater.
The programme is open to anyone local to the Broxbourne area and ideally local to Lee Valley White Water Centre.
What commitment are we asking for from participants
They’ll need to commit to five full days of coaching as well as a number of Wednesday night kayaking sessions (the Wednesday nights are flexible and obviously we wouldn’t expect them to make every single one). We’ll also try and open up opportunities for them to paddle outside of this time if they’d like that.
Delivering session at two key events being held at Lee Valley White Water Centre which are a Women and Girls Festival in July 2023 and at the ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships in September. As well as the possibility of other coaching opportunities including community paddling initiatives, opportunities within Lee Valley Regional Park Authority or through club activity at Lee Valley Paddlesports Club.
Will they need to buy any kit?
We’ll provide them with all the kayak specific kit needed so they don’t need to worry about that. They’ll need some comfortable clothing that they don't mind getting wet and should more specific clothing be needed as part of cultural or religious beliefs please let us know as we’re able to accommodate this and can signpost them to a supplier.
When does the programme start?
The programme starts in early March 2023 and continues through to July 2023 with Wednesday evening sessions and one weekend day a month for coaching. The programme will come to a conclusion with the ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships in September 2023 where they’ll be leading taster sessions for the local community. It doesn’t stop there, through Lee Valley Paddlesports Club and Broxbourne Council, they’ll have opportunities to help even more people experience paddling to fully put your new qualification into practice.
How to apply
Anyone interested in taking part just needs to complete an application. If you would like to put yourself forward for consideration please complete the online expression of interest form here by 15 February 2023.