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New Kayak Rolling Program & Other 2014 Updates to the Sea Kayak Program

The Sea Kayak Program Development Committee is pleased to release the 2014 version of the Sea Kayak Program Manual.

Along with the usual minor tweaks and adjustments to the program there are several larger changes this year including the introduction of a new kayak rolling program. The latest version of the manual (version 15.00) is now available in your Members Area

(Hint: if you have trouble finding the Instructor Services menu and Sea Kayak Program link, you simply have to renew your membership first for 2014 season).

New Kayak Rolling Program

We are really excited to announce a brand new Kayak Rolling Program. The new program includes a Rolling Skills course, and Kayak Rolling Instructor and Kayak Rolling Instructor Trainer certifications.

When the sea kayak program was written over 15 years ago, kayak rolling was always viewed as an advanced mythical skill that paddlers would someday hope to learn. Because of that, rolling was placed quite high up in the chain and is first introduced to paddlers at Sea Kayak Level-2. The good news is that since then, with the development of smaller designed kayaks and new paddlers recognizing the importance of learning how to roll, kayak rolling is no longer viewed as the advanced skill it once was.

For some time the Program Development Committee debated how to modify the existing program to give access to lower-level instructors training in how to actually teach rolling. The problem we struggled with was how to fit the time required without extending the instructor course length.

The solution we came up with was the development of an independent and optional stream specifically for rolling which allows instructors to learn how to teach the skill, without affecting the core program in any way.

With the addition of the kayak rolling skills clinic any certified rolling instructor will be able to offer sanctioned clinics in their local pool or beach using the Paddle Canada insurance.

When can I sign-up for rolling instructor courses?

We are still working on last minute details related to the roll-out plan across Canada and we will be announcing those details shortly.

Who is going to be able to initially be certified as a Kayak Rolling Instructor Trainer?

To help seed the program, any Sea Kayak Level-2 Instructor Trainer as of January 1, 2014 will automatically be certified as a Rolling Instructor Trainer with the expectation that he/she will organize and run rolling instructor courses to all interested parties in their community.

The initial grandfathering will only happen once and any future Level-2 IT’s will not be automatically be given rolling IT status. Like other Instructor Trainer certifications, future Rolling IT’s will only be certified via a mentoring process.

Who is going to be initially certified as Kayak Rolling Instructors?

Similar to instructor trainers, we need to start somewhere and get some people certified initially. With that in mind, any Sea Kayak Level-2 Instructor certified as of January 1, 2014 will automatically become a Kayak Rolling Instructor with the expectation that they will actively offer clinics in their community.

Like Rolling IT’s, the initial grandfathering will only happen once and any future Level-2 instructors will not be automatically be given Rolling IT status.

When can I offer the program publically?

We still have lots of work to do in the short term before you can register classes. We are working with our online database manager to update certifications of those affected as well as add the rolling skills course itself into the system. We will send out further communication when that process is complete.

I have been teaching rolling forever, can I get advanced standing?

Because it’s a brand new program, at this time we are requesting any interested instructors to attend the training. We are looking at options (like possible compressed courses) for those who have significant rolling instruction experience and will announce possible options in the near future.

What if I’m not interested learning to roll or teaching it?

The good news is that the core sea kayak program hasn’t changed with the new addition. The rolling program is 100% optional so if rolling isn’t your thing that’s ok.

A couple of other important changes to the program include:

  1. The Flatwater Kayak stream has been renamed to Basic Kayak, Basic Kayak Instructor and Basic Kayak Instructor Trainer respectively. The name change is to bring it more in line with names of similar programs in SUP and Canoeing.
  2. It’s now a requirement for Basic and Level-1 instructor candidates to demonstrate they can successfully rescue somebody using the Hand of God rescue. 
  3. There is a new policy document in the manual about the use of, and extra responsibilities related to, conditional passes. It’s important that you read it. 
  4. Due to the difference in course goals and presentation, we have added a new policy that Level-1 and Level-2 Instructor programs cannot be run at the same time as one course. They can however be run during the same dates and location if there are distinct instructors for each level and the students are treated as separate throughout the training period. This policy comes into effect immediately.

Sea Kayak Program Development Committee
[email protected]