Glossary of canoe terms

Canoeing and kayaking have their own language, much of it from boating in gene general, some of it quite specific..

 

AC
  • Australian Canoeing Inc., the National Organisation to which State Associations are affiliated, and which is in turn affiliated with the International Canoe Federation. 

  • Formerly known as the Australian Canoe Federation. 

ACI
  • Australian Consolidated Industries, owners of the trade name ‘Fibreglass’.

Action Learning
  • Learning by working on real problems, implementing solutions, and reviewing and reflecting on the learning process
Active Learning
  • Learning driven primarily by the learner, with the instructor acting as a facilitator. See also self-directed learning
Advanced Sea Instructor and Guide (level 3)
  • Holders of the AC Advanced Sea Instructor and Guide (Level 3) Award have been assessed at and are qualified to operate in difficult sea conditions, defined as 
    • Open crossings with wind speeds of 7 - 21 knots (12 - 38 km/hr)
    • Wave heights of at least 1.0 m 
    • Surf up to 2.0m
Advanced Whitewater Instructor and Guide (Level 3)

 

  • Holders of the Whitewater Instructor and Guide (Level 3) Awards have been assessed at and are qualified to operate in Grade 3-4 Whitewater conditions
Aft
  • The rear part of a canoe or kayak (or any vessel).

ANTA
  • Australian National Training Authority
Apprenticeship
  • A system of training regulated by law or custom which combines on-the-job training and work experience while in paid employment with formal off-the-job training. The apprentice enters into a contract of training or training agreement with an employer which imposes mutual obligations on both parties. Traditionally, apprenticeships were in trade occupations (declared vocations) and were of four years’ duration. See also New Apprenticeships
AQF
  • Australian Qualifications Framework
AQTF
  • Australian Quality Training Framework
Beam
  • The widest part of canoe (or any vessel).

Bent-Shaft Paddle
  • A paddle with a bend in the shaft near the throat, which increases power but decreases control. 

Bilge
  • The lowest point of a vessel where water collects
Blade
  • The widened end of the paddle that does the work in the water.

Bow
  • The forward extremity of a canoe or kayak (or any vessel).

Broach
  • A dangerous situation in which a canoe is caught against an obstruction and turned sideways by the current.  Alternatively when a boat is turned side on to wind and waves by the action of the waves.

BAT
  • Baths Advanced Trainer, a small kayak with round ends and designed for use in swimming pools. Used as the mount for Canoe Polo. 

Biomechanics
  • The study of the mechanics of a living body, especially of the forces exerted by muscles and gravity on the skeletal structure.
Bulkhead
  • A ‘wall’ sealing off one end of a kayak to form a watertight compartment. Normally seen in sea kayaks.

Buoyancy
  • The tendency or capacity to remain afloat.

  • Buoyancy in a flooded kayak is created by sealed compartments, floatation bags, foam blocks or construction materials and systems that are lighter than water.

  • All canoes and kayaks should have sufficient buoyancy material so that they float level at the surface when swamped. 

C1
  • Designation for a one-person canoe.

  • In Flatwater a C1 competitor kneels within their boat and in Whitewater, the competitor is encased within their boat.  In both cases, the competitor will use a Paddle with single blade

C2
  • Designation for a two-person canoe. 

C4
  • Designation for a four-person canoe.

Canadian Canoe
  • An often used but incorrect term for an open canoe propelled with a single-bladed paddle. 

Canoe
  • Derived from the birch bark canoes of North America, the term ''Canoe'' refers in broad terms to any paddle-propelled craft with two pointed ends, including kayaks. 

  • Often used to mean an open canoe (occasionally incorrectly called a Canadian Canoe). 

  • A canoe (as opposed to a kayak) is a boat propelled with a single blade paddle, from a kneeling position in Flatwater and Whitewater competition or from a sitting position in Touring and Marathon events.

  • Touring, Flatwater and most Marathon canoes are undecked (open) many Whitewater canoes are decked, and may appear like be kayaks.

L-R: 

Touring Canoe Flatwater C1 Marathon TC1.

Canoe Polo
  • Discipline of Canoeing (played in kayaks) where competitors aim to get the polo ball into the net - similar to water polo in style.

  • A ball game played in BAT''s in swimming pools, the object being to score goals.  Rules are similar to those of soccer, etc., and the game has been likened to gladiatorial combat. 

Capsize
  • Tipping canoe/kayak over.

  • It is best to leave the boat upside down until you either get it on shore or the rescuer takes over - rolling it back upright will fill it with water, making it difficult to move the craft 

Cavitation (of a paddle)
  • A situation when the paddle gets air circulating around it and thus has reduced 'bite' on the water and loses its power. Can happen in highly aerated water such as rapids or in breaking surf / foam
Chine
  • Any corner instead of a curve in the cross section view of the canoe or kayak
Chute
  • An area where a river of stream suddenly narrows, resulting in increased water speed often contains rapids. 

Cloud Cover
  • Clear: Free from cloud, fog, mist or dust haze.
  • Sunny: Little chance of the sun being obscured by cloud. Note: High level cirrus clouds are often thin and wispy, allowing a considerable amount of sunlight to penetrate them, sufficient to produce shadows. In this case the day could be termed ''sunny'' even though more than half the sky may be covered in cirrus cloud.
  • Cloudy: Predominantly more cloud than clear sky for example, during the day the sun would be obscured by cloud for substantial periods of time.
  • Overcast: Sky completely covered with cloud
Coaming
  • A raised rim or border around an opening designed to keep out water. Typically found around the cockpit of a kayak
Cockpit
  • The place occupied by the paddler. 

  • There is normally a seat, and in some kayaks and canoes, the cockpit will be sealed with a spray cover around the paddler’s waist and attached by shock cord to the cockpit rim. 

Collision
  • As far as other boats are concerned the rule is: ‘If it’s bigger, faster, or more expensive than the canoe or kayak, keep out of its way.’
    On rivers and in channels, keep to the right. 

  • Waterways such as Sydney Harbour may have specific regulations regarding the right of way of types of craft.  Check with the authority of the waterways for this information.

Compartment  
  • The space separated from the rest of a boat by a bulkhead for the stowage of gear and preservation of buoyancy. (e.g. in a sea kayak)

Competency
  • (also competence) the ability to perform tasks and duties to the standard expected in employment
Competency-based assessment
  • (or CBA) the gathering and judging of evidence in order to decide whether a person has achieved a standard of competence
Cotton
  • A useful natural fibre. 

  • Unfortunately cotton fabrics are poor insulators when wet, and cotton garments should not be worn when paddling except in hot weather. (Jeans should never be worn on the water.) 

Current Designs
  • A north American based manufacturer of canoes and kayaks
Cyalume
  • The original chemical light stick, named for the manufacturer, the American Cyanamid Company.

  • The light sticks are useful when paddling at night, and for emergencies. 

Cyclone
  • Tropical cyclones are intense low pressure systems which form over warm ocean waters at low latitudes. Tropical cyclones are associated with strong winds, torrential rain and storm surges (in coastal areas). Tropical cyclones can cause extensive damage as a result of the strong wind, flooding (caused by either heavy rainfall or ocean storm surges) and landslides in mountainous areas as a result of heavy rainfall and saturated soil. Tropical cyclones are also known (in other parts of the world) as tropical storms. If they attain maximum mean winds above 117 kph (63 knots) they are called severe tropical cyclones. In the northwestern Pacific severe tropical cyclones are known as typhoons and in the northeast Pacific and Atlantic/Caribbean they are called hurricanes

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Deck
  • An enclosed area over the bow and/or stern of a canoe, which keeps water out and increases the vessel''s strength. 

Displacement
  • The amount of water displaced by a floating vessel
Downstream Gate
  • A gate on a slalom course that is to be traversed in the same direction as the water''s flow. To be distinguished from an upstream gate. 

Draw
  • A stroke taken at right angles to the direction of travel, as a means of moving the boat sideways or turning a canoe (bow and stern draw).

Dagger
  • US canoe and kayak manufacturer. 

Dragonboat
  • Traditional Chinese paddle-racing boat, with more than 20 paddlers, plus sweep and drummer. 

Duct Tape
  • Self-adhesive tape used to repair anything except ducts. The minimalist repair kit for canoeists. 

Eddy
  • A relatively calm area, away from the main current created by obstacles or bends and other structures in a river (tidal eddies also occur). 

  • Upstream gates in slalom are often located in eddies, so that the paddler will not have to fight the current''s full force.  

Edging
  • Putting the boat on its edge to increase its manoeuvrability. (See also J Lean.) 

End Loop 
  • A loop of rope of at least 6mm diameter and large enough to allow a 9mm sphere or cylinder to pass through fixed to bow or stern for use as a hand grip. See toggle. 

EPIRB
  • Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon: an electronic device for locating survivors and wreckage after an incident is over. As with all ‘safety’ devices, not a substitute for seamanship.

Eskimo  
  • A disparaging term, meaning ‘eater of raw meat’. See Inuit. 

Eskimo Roll
  • A method of using the paddle against the water to right a boat that has tipped or rolled over.

  • The roll relies on body movement for success, not the sweep of the paddle. There are many variations. 

Fast And Clean
  • Descriptive of an excellent slalom / whitewater run, since it covers the course quickly with a minimum of penalty points. 

Five
  • A five-second penalty assessed when a slalom / whitewater paddler touches a gate pole.

Fifty
  • A fifty-second penalty assessed when a slalom / whitewater paddler misses a gate, moves a gate pole to allow passage, or goes through a gate in the wrong direction. 

Flatwater
  • Water that is not sea or moving water (whitewater) and has little or no movement. 

  • As an adjective, it describes competitive canoeing on that type of water, as opposed to whitewater canoeing. 

Flatwater Racing
  • Flatwater Racing is determined by speed alone.

  • Racing on flatwater over marked straight courses over distances of 200m, 500m, 1000m and some short middle distances such as 2500m and 5000m.

  • Flatwater kayaks and canoes must meet strict size and weight rules, and are designed for speed, not comfort and stability. Flatwater is an Olympic sport. 

Above:

Flatwater K1, K2, K4, C1 and C2 that compete at the Olympic Games

Flare
  • The progressive widening of a hull towards the gunwale, typically seen at bow and stern of some sea kayaks.

  • Pyrotechnic device often required by boating regulations. 

Flatwater (Inland) Guide or Instructor
  • Holders of the Flatwater Instructor and Guide (SRO99) and Inland Instructor and Guide (SRO03) (Level 1) Award have been assessed at and are qualified to operate on inland waters such as open lakes and rivers (but not on Whitewater or at sea) in controlled conditions for inland kayaking and canoeing which include: 
    • sheltered and calm waters 
    • minimal wind 
    • ease of access to shore 
    • minimal flow of water 
  • This award specifically excludes dangerous or exposed areas
Float Plan
  • A document giving specifics of the composition of a group including expected trip route, etas, group composition and skill and equipment details
  • AC recommends that for every trip that leaves the immediate launch area, details of the participants and the trip should be lodged with a responsible person or authority so that in the event of an emergency, a detailed description of the group and its activity is freely available.

Freestyle
  • A competition on white water, where paddlers perform tricks and the competition is based on points scored.

  • Sometimes referred to as Rodeo Canoeing

Freeboard
  • Distance between waterline and the gunwales essentially, how much of the canoe sits above the water 

Front(s)
  • A Front - The boundary between air masses having different characteristics
  • Cold Fronts - In some regions along the polar front, cold dense air advances equatorwards, causing warm air to be forced aloft over its sloping surface. This portion of the polar front is known as a cold front.
    Cold polar air is replacing warm tropical air
  • Warm Fronts - In other regions along the front, warm air of lower density moves polewards, sliding over its sloping surface. This portion is called a warm front.
    Warm tropical air replaces cold polar air.

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Gate
  • In whitewater slalom, a passage marked by two poles that the paddler must pass through. See downstream gate upstream gate. 

GPS
  • A system of satellites, computers, and receivers that is able to determine the latitude and longitude of a receiver on Earth by calculating the time difference for signals from different satellites to reach the receiver
Grip
  • The area of the paddle that the canoeist holds. 

Guide
  • A person who leads or guides a group without the intention of imparting skills or knowledge beyond that which is necessary to participate safely and adequately in the activity. At the end of a session or program with a guide, the intent is not for the participant to have acquired the skills to independently participate in the activity
Gust
  • Any sudden increase of wind of short duration, usually a few seconds
Hull
  • The main body of any water-going vessel, including canoes and kayaks. 

Hatch
  • An opening through the deck into a compartment, and closed by a hatch cover. Normally seen on sea kayaks. 

Helmet
  • A canoeing helmet should be worn while paddling white water, surfing, paddling among rocks or in sea caves, and during rescue practice they are optional for other canoeing activities. 
  • The helmet should be securely fixed whenever it is worn
Hypothermia
  • The loss of core body temperature through exposure to cold and wet, and especially wind. Potentially fatal.

  • Prevention is much better than cure: dress warmly and eat well. 

ICF
  • International Canoe Federation - the international governing body for Canoe/Kayak worldwide

Inland (Flatwater) Guide or Instructor
  • Holders of the Inland Instructor and Guide (SRO99) and Inland Instructor and Guide (SRO03) (Level 1) Award have been assessed at and are qualified to operate on inland waters such as open lakes and rivers (but not on Whitewater or at sea) in controlled conditions for inland kayaking and canoeing which include: 
    • sheltered and calm waters 
    • minimal wind 
    • ease of access to shore 
    • minimal flow of water 
  • This award specifically excludes dangerous or exposed areas
Instructor
  • A person who facilitates skill transfer or development to participants in order that they may act independently or with minimal supervision. This requires the instructor to be able to critique technique, apply a variety of appropriate instructional strategies and may require them to assess participant’s skill acquisition at the end of a program or session
Inuit
  • Literally, ‘the people’ - the name given by the Arctic people to themselves.

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J Lean
  • A way of leaning the boat while keeping the torso vertical. In sea kayaks it lifts the bow and stern out of the water, increasing the effective rocker and making the boat easier to turn. 

J Stroke
  • A stroke on which the paddle is turned to act as a rudder, keeping the boat on a straight course without having to shift the paddle to the other side for the next stroke. 

Kayak
  • Kayaks are derived from the frame and sealskin hunting boats of the Arctic.

  • In broad terms ''kayak'' refers to any paddle-propelled craft with two pointed ends, including canoes. 

  • A boat propelled with a double bladed paddle.

  • Competitors will sit in their boats for all disciplines

  • Kayaks are fully decked craft

L-R: 

Polo BAT Whitewater Kayak Touring Kayak Sea Kayak Flatwater K1

K1
  • Designation for a one-person Kayak

  • Competitor will only use a Paddle with double blades

K2
  • Designation for a two-person Kayak

K4
  • Designation for a four-person Kayak

Kevlar
  • Du Pont’s trade name for poly-para-phenylene terephthalamide - a strong, tough, stiff, high melting point fibre, used in composite construction. Lighter, stiffer, more expensive than glass fibre.

Keel
  • Strip running the length of the canoe''s underside for the purpose of stiffening the hull and improving tracking 

Keel Line
  • Shape of the hull bottom running from bow to stern varies from straight to having extreme curvature or 'rocker'

Knot
  • Unit of speed equal to 1 nautical mile per hour
Lateral resistance
  • The ability of a boat to keep from moving sideways in a side wind
Leader
  • A person giving direction to a group, this includes Instructors, Guides, trip leaders, peer leaders, Scout leaders, group leaders, etc
Leeway
  • The sideways movement of a boat away from the wind
Line
  • The path chosen by a whitewater slalom paddler to traverse the gates and the entire course.

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Marathon
  • In Marathon Racing the competitor races over a designated long distance course on water not subject to prescribed standards. He must take the water as he finds it and be prepared, it may be necessary, to carry his canoe around an impassable obstacle, or between two waterways.

  • Racing over long distances - generally 10km upwards depending on level and age of competitor.

  • The longest Marathon Race in Australia is the Red Cross Murray Marathon where competitors will paddle from Yarrawonga to Swan Hill a distance of 400km over five days to help raise funds for the Red Cross.

Max Kayaks
  • An Australian manufacturer of kayaks and paddles (Ian Rowling)
Neap tide
  • The tide with the smallest height variation between high and low tides
NTP
  • Australian Canoeing National Training Provider
Oar
  • A Rowing term, not Canoeing

Outrigger
  • A form of paddle racing, usually at sea, derived from Pacific Island outrigger canoes. 

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Painter
  • A line attached to the bow of a vessel used to tie it up or tow it
Paddle
  • The implement used for propelling a canoe. Canoeists use a single bladed paddle. Kayakers use a double-bladed paddle that''s held in the middle. 

  • N - A canoe paddle has a single blade, with a T or similar grip at the top a kayak paddle has two blades, usually set at an agle to each other. There are specific designs of paddle for particular purposes.

  • V - To propel a canoe or kayak with a paddle. 

Above:

Kayak Paddle (double bladed) and Canoe Paddle (single blade)

Participant
  • A person who has the necessary competencies to participate independently or under supervision in an outdoor activity. The ability to demonstrate participatory skills to the appropriate standard is a pre-requisite to performing as a Guide or Instructor in outdoor recreation
Pawlata
  • A type of Kayak Roll using an extended paddle (hands leave the normal paddling position).

  • Hans Eduard Pawlata, the Austrian who adapted a Greenland roll for use with the feathered European paddle and introduced it to Europe in 1927. 

Peer Activity
  • A paddling activity where no instructional or guiding structure exists and it is the responsibility of each member of the group to ensure the suitability of their equipment and themselves for the activity
Petit-Final
  • A race that''s used to determine the placing of paddlers who don''t reach the finals. For example, if eight paddlers qualify for the final, the winner of the petit-final is awarded ninth place. From the French, 'little final.' 

Perception
  • A US kayak manufacturer.

PFD
  • Personal Flotation Device - 

  • Australian Canoeing recommends that paddlers wear a PFD at all times whilst on the water

  • Required by law for paddlers in most States and Territories of Australia.

  • Canoeing PFDs are Type 2 or Type 3, and designed specifically for canoeing to allow the freedom of body movement needed. 

Pitch pole
  • When a vessels stern is thrown up over the bow of the vessel (summersault) usually by wave action
Port
  • The left side of the boat
Portage
  • Competitors (and their designated helpers where approved) shall disembark in a defined area, carry their craft around the portage (over a bank, weir etc) and embark in the defined area to continue racing on water.

Prevailing winds
  • The particular winds typical for a certain region at a certain time of the year
Prusik
  • Named after Dr Karl Prusik, a German climber of the 1930''s.

  • A knot for attaching a loop to a rope. The loop can be slid along the rope, but holds when under tension. In canoeing, used in whitewater rescue situations.

QK (Quality Kayaks)
  • A NZ based manufacturer of kayaks
Rain
  • Precipitation of liquid water drops greater than 0.5 mm in diameter. In contrast to showers, it is steadier and normally falls from stratiform (layer) cloud
Rapids
  • An area of a river, stream, or course where the current is very rapid and flows around and over various obstacles. 

RCC
  • Recognition of current competencies (or RCC) the acknowledgement of competencies currently held by a person, acquired through training, work or life experience. More commonly known as recognition of prior learning
Repechage
  • A competitive round in which paddlers who lost in the first heat are given a chance to advance further from the French for 'second chance.' 

Re-registration
  • Australian Canoeing Guide and Instructors Awards are valid for 3 years.  After that period, holders must re-register.

  • re-registration is a policy that requires Australian Canoeing Instructors and Guides to undertake a prescribed amount of continuing education. Re-registration is required to retain any rights as an Australian Canoeing Instructor or Guide.

  • Re-registration is part of the continuing education of Canoeing instructors and Guides. Its purpose is:

    • To extend the knowledge and skills of Instructors and Guides.
    • To provide an avenue for post accreditation servicing·
    • To ensure that Instructors and Guides are up to date with the latest techniques, teaching methods, safety issues, legal responsibilities and risk management information.

Retractable Fin
  • A control surface fitted to a sea kayak to control its directional stability (look like a small keel of fin at the rear) - making the boat easier to control in downwind or cross wind situations. The fin resides in a case, and extends through an opening in the hull towards the stern. 

Rigging
  • The system of ropes on the deck of a kayak used to stow gear and in self rescue maneuvers.
Risk Management
  • The systematic application of management policies, procedures and practices to the tasks of identifying, analysing, evaluating, treating and monitoring risk
River Left
  • The left side of a river from the paddler''s point of view when looking down stream.

River Right
  • The right side of a river from the paddler''s point of view when looking down stream.

RPL
  • Recognition of prior learning (or RPL) the acknowledgement of a person’s skills and knowledge acquired through previous training, work or life experience, which may be used to grant status or credit in a subject or module.
Rudder
  • A device commonly used for steering or trimming the craft.

  • Rudders may be retractable, swinging or fixed. 

RTO
  • Registered training organisation (or RTO) an organisation registered by a state or territory recognition authority to deliver training and/or conduct assessments and issue nationally recognised qualifications in accordance with the Australian Quality Training Framework.

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Sea (1)
  • Waves caused by local wind effects
Sea (2)

An area should be classified as sea conditions (for the purposes of required qualifications) if any of the following apply:

  • The area requires surf (of any size) entry or exit on an average day
  • Any embayment where the mouth to the sea is greater than 1/6th diameter of the bay
  • If the area is in the entrance structure to an estuary or embayment 
  • An area of swell 
  • Documented tidal rips (see chart)
  • Documented tidal current greater than 1 knot (see chart)
  • Any area where the tide (rise or fall) removes a landing area/ makes it unsuitable
  • Distances greater than 1000 metres from shore
  • Fetch greater than 8 nautical miles.
The transition from sea to inland water will often occur in the area of the following features
  • Major river bend
  • Barrier sand bar structure
  • Constriction in river
Sea Instructor & Guide (level 2)
  • Holders of the Sea Instructor and Guide (Level 2) Awards have been assessed at sea and are qualified to operate in moderate sea conditions, defined as
    • Areas where the coastline may be simple, not involving overfalls, tidal races, difficult landings or open crossings and 
    • Minimum winds of 7 - 10 knots (12 - 19 km/h) 
    • Breaking waves (up to 1.0 m) 
    • Small surf (0.5 to 1.0 m)
Shaft
  • The narrow part of the paddle, above the blade, encompassing the grip. 

Sheer
  • The upward curve or amount of upward curve of the longitudinal lines of a kayak''s hull as viewed from the side
Showers
  • Precipitation, often short-lived (but may last half an hour) and heavy, falling from convective clouds. Usually begin and end suddenly
Slack water
  • A period of no tidal movement between ebb and flood tides
Slalom
  • Competition held on white water in which paddlers travel a course marked out by ‘gates’, poles suspended over the water. The object is to make the fastest time without missing or striking the gates.

  • Slalom Racing is an Olympic discipline

Sounding
  • The depth of water as marked on a chart
Spring tide(s)
  • The period of the highest high and lowest low tides
Squall
  • a rather sudden increase of the mean wind speed which lasts for several minutes at least before the mean wind returns to near its previous value. A squall may include many gusts
Starboard
  • The right side of a vessel
Start
  • The method of starting races

Stationary Start

The position of the boats at the start is such that the bows of the competing boats are on the starting line(s). The boats must be stationary. The craft may be held at the stern.

Grid Start

National teams equally represented in each rank of the grid with the positions being determined by the draw.

Le Mans Start

The boats are lined up on the shore in an order determined by the draw.

Rolling Start

Where strong currents render a stationary start difficult, a rolling start may be used, the boats being allowed to drift towards the line with a view to crossing on the signal.

Interval Start

Where a simultaneous start is impracticable or undesirable, an interval start may be used, the order being determined by a draw.

Stern
  • The rear end of a canoe (or any boat). 

Sweep
  • A stroke on which the blade moves through the water in a wide curve, thus helping to steer as well as propelling the vessel. 

Swell
  • Waves caused by non-local effects (see sea)
SOT - Sit On Top
  • A form of kayak in which the deck and paddler''s seating station flow into each other (rather than having a hole through the deck which one sits in 'cockpit'). Also known as ‘wash deck’ boat. 

Spray deck
  • Also called a spray cover and spray skirt, attaches around the paddlers waist, then fitted around the cockpit coaming to waterproof the cockpit.
Squirt
  • A whitewater kayak of low volume so that it may be deliberately submerged to perform tricks, as in Freestyle. 

Stability
  • The ability of a vessel to maintain equilibrium or resume its original, upright position after displacement, as by the sea or strong winds

  • Stability is referred to in terms of primary and secondary primary stability is the ability of the vessel to stay flat on the waters surface despite actions to tip it, secondary stability is a measure of the vessels tendency to return to flat on the water surface after being tipped. 

Stopper
  • The wave formed immediately downstream of an obstacle over which water is flowing. 

  • Also known as an ‘hydraulic jump’

  • Large stoppers will stop boats, and those below weirs may be deadly.

Strainer
  • A fallen tree or a submerged fence through which water flows

  • A boat or person can be held against or within a strainer by the force of the flow (being strained like leaves in a tea strainer).

  • Keep well clear of such hazards. If swept against an object, lean towards the object to prevent capsizing.

Technically correct (strokes)

    The term 'technically correct' has caused much confusion amongst Instructors and Assessors since it first appeared in the unit of competency SRO CAN 002A.

    Firstly, paddle is a developing sport (not a mathematical science).  Sprint racing has been the area of greatest development in the last few years and if you look at a forward racing stroke from 10 years ago and compare it with today, it has evolved.  In the same way slalom, and recreational (flatwater and sea) paddle strokes have also evolved (and will continue to do so).

    When training or assessing people, keep the following 3 marker points in mind

    #1 Is it healthy, does it protect the back (straight back with a slight lean forward and bent knees), does it protect the arm joints (not straight or hyper extended) is the blade fully submersed (except the obvious exceptions - bracing) and is it efficient.  

      If a stroke fits #1 and 'closely' resembles the strokes in various resources or contemporary text books then it is 'correct' at the level of a skills award.

    #2 Is it clean enough that it can be seen and copied and is it the person''s normal stroke (the one they do after 2 hours, not the one they do specifically for the assessment) and does the person understand some of the risks from bad technique?

      If a stroke fits #1 and #2 and 'closely' resembles the strokes in various resources or contemporary text books then it is 'correct' at the level of a guides award.

    #3 Does the person demonstrating the stroke understand its variations for sea and or whitewater, do they understand the background to the stroke and the risks from bad technique.  Can they correct bad technique.  Can they break the stroke down to 3 or 4 simple moves that can be clearly demonstrated and replicated?

      If a stroke fits #1, #2 and #3 and 'closely' resembles the strokes in various resources or contemporary text books (which they have read) then it is 'correct' at the level of an instructors award.

Throat
  • The area of the paddle where the shaft meets the blade. 

Thwart
  • A supporting structure that extends across the width of the canoe. 

TC1
  • Single Touring Canoe. Usually refers to boats used in Marathon Racing. TC2 and TC4 are also used.

TK1
  • Single Touring Kayak. Usually refers to boats used in Marathon Racing. TK2 are also used. 

Toggle
  • A device at least 75mm long and 10mm in diameter fixed by cord to the ends of a canoe or kayak as a safe hand grip. 

  • Toggles and their attachment points may not have the strength to carry the weight of a boat (especially a laden sea kayak)  - carry the boat, not the toggle.

Torso
  • The part of the body that provides most power for paddling - power in paddling does not come from the arms, but through twisting the body. 

Tracking
  • How straight a kayak moves as it is paddled
Traineeship
  • A system of vocational training combining off-the-job training at an approved training provider with on-the-job training and practical work experience. Traineeships generally take one to two years and are now a part of the New Apprenticeships system.
Trangia Stove
  • A brand of stove that packs away compactly.  Useful for overnight / camping trips as it does not take up much room

Upstream Gate
  • A gate on a slalom course that is to be traversed in the direction against the flow of the water. To be distinguished from a downstream gate.

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Vocational Education
  • Education designed to develop occupational skills. See also vocational education and training
VET
  • vocational education and training (VET) post-compulsory education and training, excluding degree and higher level programs delivered by higher education institutions, which provides people with occupational or work-related knowledge and skills. VET also includes programs which provide the basis for subsequent vocational programs. Alternative terms used internationally include technical and vocational education and training (TVET), vocational and technical education and training (VTET), technical and vocational education (TVE), vocational and technical education (VTE), and further education and training (FET).
Waterline
  • The highest point that water reaches on the hull when the canoe is in the water 

Weapon Kayaks
  • An Australian based manufacturer of fiberglass kayaks and paddles (Chad Meek)
Weathercocking
  • To have a tendency to veer in the direction of the wind
Weir
  • A wall across a river to control its flow, such as the ‘locks’ on the Murray River. They are dangerous, because the flow at the surface immediately downstream of the weir will be upstream.

  • Objects (i.e. boats and people) can be trapped in the circulating flow. 

  • Keep well away from weirs, both upstream and downstream. 

Whitewater
  • The type of water created by rapids, so called from the white foam created on the water''s surface. 

  • As an adjective, it describes Slalom Racing, which takes place in such water. 

Whitewater Instructor and Guide (level 2)
  • Holders of the Whitewater Instructor and Guide (Level 2) Awards have been assessed at and are qualified to operate in Grade 2 Whitewater conditions 
  • A Whitewater Instructor (Level 2) may instruct on Grade 2 and guide on Grade 3

Wind terms Beaufort Scale
  • Calm - 0 knots
  • Light - less than 10 knots (19 kph or less)
  • Moderate - 11 to 16 knots (20 - 29 kph)
  • Fresh - 17 to 21 knots (30 - 39 kph)
  • Strong - 22 to 33 knots (40 - 62 kph)
  • Gale - 34 to 47 knots (63 - 87 kph)
  • Storm - 48 knots plus (88 kph plus)
Yoke
  • A thwart that is shaped so as to allow the canoe to be carried on the shoulders during a portage