Canoeing

Equipment

Canoe Personal Flotation Device (PFD) Single-Bladed Paddle(s)

Rules

There are no written or standardized rules for canoeing, except those in-place for competitions. There are however, certain restrictions and guidelines that should be followed when canoeing in public waterways.

Description

Canoeing is the act of moving in a body of water, alone or with one or two others, in a narrow, keelless boat with pointed ends. The canoe is propelled by one or multiple paddles. Canoeing, once the dominant form of transportation in the western hemisphere, is now a major recreational and competitive activity across the globe. Usable in lakes, rivers or oceans, canoes are open deck boats, powered by one or two people using single-bladed paddles. Canoeing is a relatively safe activity, but should only be undertaken in calm waters, by moderately strong swimmers.

History

Canoes were developed and used for thousands of years by Native Americans, as a quick and effective means of transportation. It was at one time, the primary form of long-distance travel across North America and the Amazon Basin. Europeans, after seeing the ease in which Native Americans could travel across waterways, adopted the canoe and began using it for commerce, transportation and exploration. As technology advanced and other forms of transportation became more practical, canoeing was transformed into a primarily recreational and competitive sport. The International Canoe Federation (ICF), founded in 1924, acts as the governing body for all competitive rules and regulations.