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Sea Kayaking in Scotland

Sea kayaking has been the fastest growing outdoor activity in Scotland for the last 10 years, according to many sources including VisitScotland.

Sea kayaking really does sound like something new and exiting. In the last few years you could clearly see an increase of sea kayaks in and off the water (on car roofs). One can only guess why it has become so popular recently. However, looking at pictures and thinking of the novel way of travelling from A to B on the water seems like a good idea. After all you can pack between 30 and 50kg of gear in a sea kayak (depending on boat design and paddler weight). Try to carry that amount on your back in a rucksack. Only the Royal Marines would be that crazy. You don’t have to and just pack your kayak up to the rim with camping and cooking kit.


To learn how to paddle and control a sea kayak you can either buy a book and read about it or pay someone to show you the ropes. Buying a book is cheap but you will not really learn how to kayak efficiently, which is very important in a sea kayak. You also won’t get any professional feedback. What better way to learn how to sea kayak then in a friendly environment, with good demos and plenty of time to practice and find out how to improve paddling.


If you decide to get professional instructions you can pick up a lot more in a short time and get advice of all aspects of paddle strokes. In the UK sea kayaking instructors are certified by the BCU (British Canoe Union) and trained to a high level to teach paddling. The most important paddle stroke in sea kayaking would be the forward paddle stroke. An efficient paddler doesn’t your arm or shoulder strength but core muscles instead. This is called body or trunk rotation. This is not the only thing to look after: posture, power transfer, arm position, hand position, pushing with feet, length of paddle stroke, fetch, exit and much more. Now this is only one stroke and then you have to think about manoeuvring about. Turning, backwards paddling, sideways paddling launching, landing and last not least rescues; all these skills can be acquired by reading a book, but are you sure it will work when it comes to it. Sea kayaking coaches are trained to coach people in the right skills. In the trade we have a saying: “get wetter, get wiser”. For good reasons. You only learn by trying. That doesn’t mean that you will get wet every time you go out sea kayaking in Scotland. It is optional though.


One of the leading sea kayaking coaches in the Inverness area is Highland Ascent. With years of experience they have introduced many people to sea kayaking over the years. Highland Ascent is a specialist in multi day trips. They provide sea kayakingFree Web Content, hillwalking and mountain biking trips throughout the Highlands of Scotland. One of the great things is that they are mixing activities like sea kayaking and hillwalking to produce even more exiting trips. Why not find out for yourself and contact the supplier of outdoor activity holidays yourself.

Contact Highland Ascent for more information about sea kayaking in Scotland.

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Andreas has been an outdoor instructor in Scotland for 6 years.

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