Whether your goal is to use Class II as a stepping stone to kayaking more difficult whitewater or as a destination in itself, the skills taught in this class will serve you well.
Advanced Kayaking Clinics- Skill focused ½ day clinics
*Intermediate Paddling Experience Required
- 1/2 Day Clinic
Spend the Afternoon Learning Advanced Paddling Skills
When you reach paddling class III whitewater often it’s helpful to have a little touch up from time to time on some specific skill training. Our ½ day clinics specialize in different advanced topics so you can choose which one best suits your needs.
Participants in these clinics should have a solid roll in current, be able to ferry and back ferry in class II and be able to catch one boat eddies in class II. Many of these clinics will have an opportunity to paddle the class III Zoar Gap rapid too.
These clinics will meet right at the river to maximize your time on the water. Please be sure to be prompt and do your waivers in advance to get the most out of your day. If you need to borrow any Zoar Outdoor equipment you will need to plan in some additional time to stop at Zoar Outdoor first where our staff in The Outfitters Shop will help get you geared up. Registration is required in advance so that we can prepare for your arrival.
At this level of paddling we also strongly encourage paddlers to take one of our private kayaking full day clinics. You can save money by inviting the friends you paddle the most with as we have rates for semi-privates and private groups too. Did you know our private group rate for 3 or more folks is now the same as our scheduled clinic rate! Let us tailor a full day on your schedule so you can get the most out of the paddling season!
5/14- Building Self Sufficiency
6/19- Perfecting the Draw Stroke in Current
7/10- Bio-mechanics while in Class III
7/22- Half Slice kayak technique and mastering the stern squirt
8/6- Advanced whitewater swimming
8/20- Learn to Cartwheel
9/10- Play the River
It is a great feeling to be a paddler turning the corner from being guided to being the guide of your own adventure. A feeling of safety or fear of the unknown can sometimes hold folks back from venturing out on their own. During this clinic we’ll provide our strategies to help you prepare for your next river trip. We’ll also give you the tools to evaluate your current skill level and how to relate that to different destinations. On the water we provide practical expertise based on the needs of the group. Some folks will focus on paddling skills while others may focus on group management skills.
Draw strokes have a variety of names and techniques. Let us teach you them all! We’ll evaluate timing, duration and placement of your strokes to help maximize your paddling efficiency. This stroke adds some much style to your paddling. The subtleties of proper technique for draw strokes can’t be learned on your own. Let our experience make you the smoother paddler that you want to be.
It’s pretty easy to recognize the good paddlers from the nervous ones when you watch folks paddling in class III or harder whitewater. The good ones have worked on their bio-mechanics keeping their weight forward when needed and planting high quality strokes. Imagine a snapshot of your posture as you hit a big wave, does it need some work? From better line choice to paddling control we’ll help provide tips to help your confidence in class III whitewater and it starts with controlling your boat through better biomechanics.
“Old School” paddlers will remember when the Radical Play Machine (Dagger RPM) came out in 1996. One of the best selling whitewater kayaks of all time had its heyday up until the 2000’s when playboats started to get shorter and even slicer. Well the features that made that boat have so much success have returned with stable modern hulls, more speed, better bow rocker and way more comfortable outfitting. Zoar has been on the cutting edge of instruction and using cutting edge boat designs since our beginning in 1989. We’ve been doing this a long time and we love sharing our mastery of the sport with you. Let’s get you vertical in your new boat!
With a good roll you may have gone a while without a swim at this point. You might not even realize that as your paddling skills have improved you haven’t swam in more difficult situations. There’s things to learn about swimming as rapids get harder and as we’ve said before sometimes it’s not better to learn these things on your own. Or did you think I was going to say we are all in-between swims. We’ll look at when to relax and when to be aggressive while swimming. There’s lots of techniques out there like balling up over drops to help prevent foot entrapment and timing your breaths for wave trains. Throw bag use and sometimes non-use will also be covered and implemented. It’s August and it’s hot out and swimming can actually be a lot of fun too!
Hey it’s August, it’s hot and it’s time to play in the water. Break out those spud boats and let’s flop around. The Deerfield River has great play features for learning to Cartwheel. Our highly skilled instructors will provide a progression of learning to help you work on the techniques used in a cartwheel. Like learning to roll while some folks may get it on the first go we recognize most will not, but what you will come away with is an understanding of the timing and mechanics needed to get cartwheeling. This skill like any other takes time to master, but we’ll give you some great practice routines to help you along the way.
Have you ever watched other kayakers surfing waves and holes or squirting on eddylines and wished you had a coach to help you learn these moves yourself? This one-day clinic is ideal for intermediate kayakers who want to learn the basic fun moves to “play” their way down the river and to progress beyond their skill plateau by polishing up on fundamentals and progressing to basic freestyle moves.
River play is all about using natural river features to play; rocks, eddy lines, wave trains, etc. Many tricks involve recognizing what river features are friendly and which should be avoided. Then you can spin, splat, wave wheel, and kickflip your way down the river, too!
Intermediate to advanced whitewater paddlers. Paddlers should have a reliable roll in flatwater and be able to make most whitewater attempts too. Paddlers should be able to ferry and catch one boat eddies in class II. Paddlers should be on the path towards comfortably paddling class III with maneuvers.
While some of the flatwater areas we use are quite warm in June, July, and August, the Deerfield River is always cool, regardless of the time of year or air temperature. When packing your paddling clothes, please plan accordingly, especially if you are coming early or late in the season (April, May, September, and October). Our clinics will run rain or shine.
Wear items such as:
- Synthetic long underwear, garments made of polypropylene, Capilene, or some polyester/spandex blend
- Fleece or wool socks
- Bathing suit
- Fleece or wool jacket/sweater (early/late season or if you tend to chill easily)
Other items to bring:
- Retaining strap for glasses
- Nose plugs
- Required medications
- Extra money for snacks, T-shirts, or coin-operated showers
Zoar Outdoor will provide:
- paddle jacket
- life jacket
If you own your own equipment, we suggest you use it in the clinic to get used to its quirks.
Lunch is not provided on our half day clinics.
The following statement is required by state law: “Before placing your order, please inform your server if a person in your party has a food allergy.”
We do not use nuts in our food, but can not guarantee that the ingredients in our meals do not contain nuts or other food allergens. If you have food allergies or other special dietary needs, we strongly suggest you bring your own bag lunch in non-glass containers and we will pack it with the other lunches on your trip. Please inform our office at 800 532-7483 or [email protected] if you intend to do this.
You spend somewhere between three to four hours in your boat. To prepare, stretch your thighs, hamstrings, and torso (back, stomach, shoulders, and neck). If you increase your flexibility, you will have more efficient strokes and be more comfortable in your boat.