Kayaking on the Medway doesn't need a lot of expensive kit - at least in the summer! This page is aimed at people getting on the water for the first time, probably on one of our beginner courses. It's not aimed at kayakers looking for advice on the best kit to buy - if you're already a paddler and want to buy your own kayaking kit, then become a member and come down for a chat and some friendly advice.
Dress for the weather. We'll be outside, obviously, so if it's a chilly day in April you'll dress differently to a sunny day in August. Everything you wear will at least get dripped on, and might get very wet indeed! Man-made materials are generally better than natural ones as they dry faster and remain warm when wet. Some suggestions include:
Hopefully this has given you a good idea of what to wear. You won't need to buy anything new - whatever you have in your wardrobe will be fine! If you've still got questions, drop us a line and we'll do our best to help.
Our beginner courses are finished for this year - but we'll be starting them again in the Spring! Beginner courses usually start in April when the water warms up. If you're a novice paddler looking to join the Club then please follow us on Facebook or Twitter (or enter your email below) to be notified in March when the new dates are released.
If you're already a competent paddler and would like to join the Club, please see our membership options here.
We're always looking for new members to join our friendly and growing Club! We run regular courses to introduce people to paddling, and this is our main point of entry to the Club. Once you've completed our Introductory Course, you'll have the basic skills to control the boat, and can come along on Club trips, join in on the regular paddles on Wedesdays and Sundays, and generally have fun on the water with us! Passing the course will also get you a nationally-recognised British Canoeing Discover Award! Please note that all novice paddlers must attend one of our beginner courses. If you're already a competent paddler, please see below for how to join.
All the courses are listed on our Calendar page. Choose a date that suits you, and click on the course to get to the sign-up form. Our courses consist of 8 hours coaching, either in 4 x 2-hour sessions, 2 x 4-hour sessions, or a one-day session. They currently cost £65 for adults and £45 for children. (That's just £65/£45 for the whole course - not £65/£45 each session!) Click here to see a list of courses currently planned - if you can't find a date that suits you, get in touch and we'll do our best to accomodate.
The Sunday courses are perfect for families and children (8 years and older) - it's warmer, and there are usually plenty of other children around to paddle with once the course is completed. Of course, if you can't make the Sunday sessions then the Wednesday sessions and other days are fine as well. A couple of our courses have age limits for various reasons (e.g. 14+), but these are clearly marked on the course booking page. (Unfortunately we can't take children any younger than 8 years old on any of our courses). We do occasionally run kids-only courses - please check the date page to see if we've any of these coming up.
Anybody! We have taught paddlers from 8 to 80 years old (almost!), and also have facilities for disabled paddlers. Our Clubhouse has both male & female changing rooms (with warm showers), and we have a wide variety of equipment that can be borrowed. Please do get in touch if you have any questions. Our courses are great for families and children (8 years and older) - the Sunday sessions tend to be best for younger paddlers. (Please note that a couple of our courses may have age limits, e.g. 14+ for various reasons - these will be described on the booking form if it applies).
Of course, if you're already a competent paddler, you're welcome to join in straight away - just pop down to one of our regular paddles on a Wednesday or Sunday and speak to one of our coaches. They'll take a quick look at your basic skills - paddling forward, backwards, turning and stopping - and then sign you off to join in with the paddle. You can see our membership options here.
Maidstone Canoe Club runs an active programme of events in lots of paddling disciplines, and offers coaching, leadership and progression in all of them. We do a lot of touring, we've got a successful racing team, we go sea kayaking a fair amount, we've got a very active whitewater section, and a growing number of SUP paddlers. Progression in these is coordinated by our Coaching Development Group, who support new and existing coaches at the Club. You can read more about these and discover how to get involved by following the links or checking out the "Club" menu at the top of this page.
All our courses are run by one of our friendly, fully-qualified coaches. They're all volunteers, and love to share their passion for paddlesport. Coaching at Maidstone Canoe Club is co-ordinated by our Coaching Development Group. Our coaches all have valid CRB checks and first aid qualifications, and participate in a programme of continual professional development, ensuring we are always delivering current best practice.
Mostly, just enthusiasm and a good sense of humour! We provide boats and paddles, together with buoyancy aids and other safety equipment. We will be outdoors, so wear appropriate clothing for the weather, and please bring a change of clothes and a towel, just in case! If you're on an all-day course, then you'll also need a packed lunch and perhaps warm clothes at lunchtime. We've got a helpful "What to Wear" guide here - please do read it before your course!.
Click here to see a list of current courses and sign up. If you can't find one that works for you, get in touch and we'll see what we can do.
Still got questions? Get in touch and we'll do our best to help.
Photos of our coaches go here
Fun Sessions are a significant part of what the Club does in the local community and helps greatly with our Club Mark requirements; they also help to generate income for the Club to spend on new equipment. If you can help out at any of the Fun Sessions, please do so - the participants, and the Club, really appreciate it. Please mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you are willing to assist. Below is a list of fun sessions for 2013 and their current status. Dates also on calendar under fun sessions
Coach / Helpers
Tue 21st May
Grove Green Cubs
Thur 23rd May
Mark, Rowan, Andrea
Mon 3rd June
Mark, Geoff, Andrea
Tue 4th June
Rowan, Alan, Andrea
Thurs 6th June
Lee, Andrea, Geoff
Mon 10th June
Tues 11th June
Tues 18th June
Fri 21st June
Mon 1st July
Friday 5th July
Mon 8th July
Lee, Geoff, Andrea
Tues 9th July
Friday 12th July
Saturday 24th August
Alan Nevard's Friends
Alan Nevard, Mark Corti
Friday 30th August