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Canoe White Water Leader



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Winner of CN Group Customer Service Excellence Award 2015

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What our clients say...

"Course very well delivered and coached, good atmosphere throughout and good knowledge. Received lots of information with ample opportunity for communication. Very good equipment and variety. A high level of information delivered to a high standard. Very good instruction with good clear reviews on all aspects. Highly recommended."

"Excellent, a lot of information and a chance to try a lot of different boats and paddles. Very high quality equipment and a good range of different gear."

"I’ve had a good time and learnt some skills in addition to those learnt from training. Plenty of info, notice for everything. I learnt how to safely take people on a jorney, which is what it’s all about, so yes! Been given all the help to get me through the course, action plans etc. Well explained in a relaxed environment. Everything great."


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British Canoeing

Paddlesport Leader Award

Paddlesport leaders will take paddlers on great journeys creating amazing experiences and inspiring participants to enjoy paddling in a range of environments. They should allow paddlers the freedom to journey at their own pace whilst supporting individuals to paddle in environments that are safe but challenging.

A paddlesport leader is seen to be an independent leader who can work outside an organisation.

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Where does a Paddlesport Leader operate?

Paddlesport leaders are qualified to take participants on simple sheltered water trips. These trips could be on flatwater not more than 200metres from the bank and in wind less than force 3 (less than 12mph).

They also include very slow moving rivers where participants could paddle against the flow.  These trips might include one or two weirs or locks that can easily be walked around or shallow rapids that can easily be managed.

Sheltered coastal bays with very limited risk of blowing out to sea or tidal estuaries with very low current (0.5 knots) are within the remit.

Lake District venues include:

  • South end of Ullswater when the wind is below 10mph with a journey up Goldrill beck to the first bridge.
  • North end of Windermere including the lower part of the river Brathay and Rothay.
  • South end of in appropriate wind including the river down to Newby Bridge.

Other examples:

  • Norfolk broads including flatwater rivers that link them.
  • Non tidal journeys on the Thames where the flow is low.
  • Llangollen canal journey from Horseshoe falls to Whitchurch.
  • Most of the lower Wye excluding the moving water section from Kerne Bridge to Symonds Yat.
  • River Medway from Tonbridge to Maidstone.

Who can I work with?

Paddlesport leaders can lead paddlers who need support in the environment in any craft.  They can work with groups in a mixture of craft or in the same craft.
They have the experience to decide on the number of paddlers they lead but 8 solo craft or 6 tandem craft would be seen as large groups.

How does assessment work?


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British Canoeing have developed an online eLearning resource to support leaders learning and can be accessed using the following link: e-learning

Course Dates

1 Day Training
4 May 2021
Cost £90

2 Day Training
10,11 March 2021
29,30 May 2021
17,18 July 2021
Cost £220

5 March 2021
12 March 2021
Cost: £200 per person (requires 2 candidates to run).
1 to 1 assessments £250 - contact us to arrange this.

How can Wild River help prepare you for the assessment?


There are no formal pre-requisites for leader training but candidates should have a level of personal skill relevant to the sheltered water environment.

For assessment all candidates must register with British Canoeing.

At registration evidence of the following is required:

  • Full Home Nation Association Membership
  • 1 Day First Aid (within 3 years) recognised by BC.
  • Safeguarding Training (within 3 years) recognised by BC.


Google Forms Action Plan

How to Register Video

British Canoeing Paddlesport Leader GuidancePaddlesport Leader Assessment Guidance

British Canoeing Paddlesport Leader Skills ChecklistPaddlesport Leader Skills Checklist

Safeguarding Training

Paddlesport Leader e-learning

Paddlesport Leader Assessment




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