The Nelson KayakClub is a volunteer organization providing a social network for its members and the community to participate in the sport of kayaking.

The club operates throughout the year. However there is a greater number of white water kayaking and sea kayaking events between October and April each year. Pool sessions operate throughout the year and include Canoe Polo; which runs during the winter months of April to September.

White water and sea kayaking events are social experiences for members and prospective members to participate in kayaking. As a club it is therefore the participants that have a responsibility for themselves and events are therefore a peer group paddle. The more experienced and stronger kayakers in a group may consult and decide on what they feel is the safest way for paddlers when heading down a tricky rapid or heading out on the sea , (which may include advice against paddling altogether). Paddlers are encouraged to offer their advice and guidance for the independent consideration and judgement of others. However the decision to paddle is the responsibility of the individual. As a peer group, should an emergency arise any member of the group may find themselves in the position of needing to self rescue, assist, or lead a rescue effort and therefore are responsible for being suitably skilled to participate in the event. White water events are run up to Grade 4. Sea kayaking events may take place on sheltered or exposed coastlines and can include open crossings.

Pool sessions: the club is only responsible for the condition of gear being used at these sessions, and participants have a responsibility for themselves during kayak activities. Pool sessions operate under the safety management system of the pool venue. This requires a lifeguard to oversee the club’s proceedings.

Training: the club offers training to members and prospective members. The club coaches and instructors provide training in a non-professional capacity and are purely experienced paddlers offering their advice. In the pool, coaching is available to anyone, however the courses run by the club are for members only. These are of a skills or rescue nature and the club will therefore appoint volunteers that are suitably experienced to act as instructors for these events. The club recommends some external courses, these are run by external providers and are covered by their safety management systems.

Gear Hire: the club has a fleet of kayaks and associated gear available for hire, plus a trailer. The club maintains the trailer however the driver towing the trailer is responsible for making sure Land Transport laws are adhered to. The club will ask basic questions to the use of the gear being hired and to the experience of the hirer, the club can refuse hire but ultimate responsibility of any individual who uses club gear is the responsibility of the hirer.


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