Often, one of the best parts of being involved in a sport -- even one that is often done solo -- can be the community that you become a part of. This is a great way to stay motivated, continue to learn more about your chosen sport, and find new ways to hone your skills. Finding this community can be a bit more difficult with a less common sport such as kayaking. This is where the World Kayak Federation can be beneficial to your involvement in the sport.
The WKF's main focus is bringing more attention to this sport and inspiring new athletes. It believes that the more competition there is within the sport, the more chance there will be for growth and additional opportunities within the kayaking community. The organization also aims to serve as the gateway for new athletes into the sport [source: McBeath]. With this initiative, the WKF offers both a chance to become involved with the sport for the first time and ways to become more involved if you're already a kayaker.
The WKF offers many forms of education, from coaching the basics to revealing new types of kayaking to try -- including freestyle, slalom, creeking and river running. While the WKF is committed to educating athletes of all ages, a new focus on early education may help to expose younger athletes to kayaking. But raising awareness and interest in the sport can potentially create new opportunities for all athletes in the community.
If you are an experienced paddler, the elite communities of the WKF are for you. They link you to other elite kayaking enthusiasts for more information on events and opportunities in your area. The blogs on the WKF Web site also provide links and opportunities for communication between die-hard kayakers [source: McBeath].
This growing community can provide countless ways to become involved and enrich your kayaking experience. For more information on kayaking, visit the links below.
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- CBBS Newsround. "What is kayaking?" 2009. (Accessed 1/3/10)http://news.bbc.co.uk/cbbcnews/hi/newsid_4450000/newsid_4450500/4450556.stm
- Columbia Encyclopedia. "Kayak." Sixth Edition, 2008. (Accessed 1/4/10)http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/kayak.aspx
- McBeath, James. "From the WK Brain: The 50,000 foot view of a sport." December 3, 2009. (Accessed 1/4/10)http://worldkayakblogs.com/jamesmcbeath/2009/12/03/from-the-wk-brain-the-50000-foot-view-of-a-sport/
- Special Olympics. "Sports Offered." 2009. (Accessed 1/4/10)http://info.specialolympics.org/Special+Olympics+Public+Website/English/Compete/Sports_Offered/Kayaking.htm
- World Kayak Federation. "About World Kayak -- A little history." 2009. (Accessed 1/3/10)http://worldkayak.com/wk_about.cfm
- World Kayak Federation. "World Kayak Ambassador Development Program." 2009. (Accessed 1/3/10)http://www.worldkayak.com/program_ambassadors/
- World Kayak Federation. "World Kayak Education Program." 2009. (Accessed 1/4/10)http://www.worldkayak.com/program_education/