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Canoe / Kayak Sprint Equipment and History






A light, narrow, open boat propelled by one, two or four paddlers from a kneeling position, using single-bladed paddles. The strokes are executed always on one side. The boats steering is controlled by the paddlers use of the paddle. The drag of the paddle creates resistance, causing the stern of a canoe to turn in the required direction.


The wide part of a paddle which passes through the water. The canoe paddler uses a paddle which has one flat blade on one end of the paddle shaft, which may not be fixed to the boat in any way.


The enclosed space in a kayak or slalom canoe where the paddler or paddlers sit.


The closed-in area over the bow and/or stem of a canoe or kayak, intended to shed water and strengthen the gunwales.

Double-bladed paddle (used for kayaks)

A paddle with a blade at each end, used in kayaks to paddle on each side of the boat.


The end of a canoe paddle opposite from the blade.


The frame or body of a boat.


A light, narrow boat, with a small space for the paddler to sit in. (Cockpit), propelled by one or more paddlers from a seating position, using double-bladed paddles. A kayak is steered by rudder controlled by the feet’s of the bowman in the front cockpit.

Single-bladed paddle (used for canoe)

A paddle with a blade at one end.

Spray Skirts

Paddlers wear spray skirts which attach around the cockpit and seal them into the boat to prevent water from entering.