Can I see what the club is like before I join, maybe have a trial paddle?

Yes. Come and join us on a club paddle at the lake.

Currently we are doing trial paddles on Tuesday nights.
We aim to start at 6:30pm, however sometimes we may be delayed by a few minutes. If you’ve booked a trial paddle we will be there!

What is a suitable age?

While very young children can enjoy paddling they need appropriate safety equipment.
As a guide, DUCKS buoyancy aids (life jackets) are suitable for ages of about 8 and over. Obviously, its the size of the child that counts.
There is no upper age limit. Paddling is a whole family activity.

What should I bring and wear?

A key feature of paddlesport is some kind of boat. Falling in is not a requirement, however you could still get wet.

Manmade fibres and layers are great. Sports tops etc.

On your feet, old pair of trainers, crocs or beach shoes.

Bring a complete change of clothes in case enthusiasm gets the better of you.

Don’t forget a towel.

Its raining, can you still paddle?

Yes. Its a watersport.

Rain by itself is not a reason not to paddle.
If the weather was too bad to paddle, strong winds, lightning or monsoon etc, we would cancel.

My Olympic athlete days are a fading memory, how fit do I need to be?

Paddling can be enjoyed on a huge variety of levels.
From riding through boiling white water rivers to gently floating about.
There will be a place for you no matter what your fitness level.

I’m a complete beginner, what boat should I buy?

This is a surprisingly common question. The answer is really easy or really complicated.

Starting with easy. DO NOT BUY A BOAT! If you are a complete beginner how do you know what type of paddler you are. The best answer is to rent/borrow/hire boats until you know what you like.

If you must buy a boat, do not buy some one elses mistake. Websites are full of ads for people selling all their brand new kit, “only used twice, as I don’t have time to paddle”. This is usually quite advanced boats and gear. Often worth £1000+.
Some one else didn’t find out what sort of paddler they are, spent a fortune on kit, then found they fell in a lot because the boat itself was unsuitable!

How do I try different boats?

The best way is to join a club. We have kayaks, canoes & sea kayaks. With coaches who can help you get the best from them.

Every one who has bought a boat, thinks it’s the best one there is. They are keen to show you why, and will happily let you have a go in their pride and joy. It’s one of the great things about paddling, people love sharing their enthusiasm for the sport.

There is an exception to the statement ‘you can always borrow some ones boat.’
Racing boats.
If it’s referred to it as a shell, it looks to be made of tissue paper stiffened with the tears of a unicorn and would shatter if exposed to loud music, understandably, the owner may not be too keen to share!

Can I just use the lake?

The lakes are privately owned and managed by South West Lakes Trust. We rent the lake to use for paddling. Our access agreement places restrictions on how we use the lake.

This means you cannot use the lakes at any time, it has to be as part of the club activity.