It is usually assumed that watersports are primarily for adults; however, with a wide variety of activities to try, there’s definitely something for everyone! In addition, getting your children involved at a young age is a great way to get them in the fresh air and away from their screens. And, you never know, experiences now could spark a lifelong passion.
Similar to other sports, watersports require a lot of practice and dedication. Therefore, starting young can help your child get to grips with the basics, allowing them to progress quickly in the sport. Research has shown that it is best to start between the ages of 7 and 9, but some children have begun as young as 5-years-old.
For some people, where they live will not provide the opportunity to get their children on the water regularly. And, need we say more about the British weather! With plenty of rainfall and water temperatures dropping to a range of 6-10℃ range in winter, it may prove tricky getting your children involved. Fortunately, for children in the UK, Easter, summer and winter holidays provide windows of opportunity to travel and get involved.
So, from Devon and Cornwall to beaches further afield, here are all the watersports your children can expect to learn at a good pace:
Let’s start off with kayaking – a watersports activity that everyone can participate in. From solo kayaks to two-person kayaks, keyhole cockpits, to sit-on kayaks, there really are kayaks for every occasion! If you’re introducing your child to kayaking, sit-on kayaks are great fun as an alternative to body-boarding. Many prefer these boats as, unlike keyhole cockpits that require a spraydeck, there is no need to secure yourself to the kayak. Instead, simply hop on board, and then the gentle waves at the shore do most of the work.
Alternatively, hire yourself a two-person kayak and learn as you go along. Sit in and stick the paddle in on one side and pull back to propel yourself forward, repeating the same action on the other side. All you need to remember is teamwork is needed to travel along in a straight line. That being said, a lot of the fun is working this out!
We recommend staying in the shallows first, allowing everyone to get used to the motion of paddling. Then, as they progress, try to see if they are willing to go even further.
Find kayaking lessons near you so that you and your family can start to learn.
A more straightforward form of watersport is the pedal boat, which can be easily controlled using your feet and legs. These accessible activities require you to cycle just the same as riding a bike, allowing your children to get closer to the water without getting wet. This is a great way to have fun while getting up close and personal to its inhabitants.
Pedal boating can also be combined with fishing. As pedal boating only requires the movement of your child’s legs to power forwards, this allows them to grab a net and see what they can find. Children of all ages can get involved, and even without a net, you’ll be able to see a variety of birds enjoying the water too.
Be sure to take the necessary safety measures, wear your life jacket, check the temperature, file a float plan, and dress for the weather at hand and you’ll all have an enjoyable time on the water.
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An underrated or undervalued form of a watersport, skimboarding involves running to gain speed before dropping the board and sliding across a water surface to meet an incoming wave. Then, once riding it, you’ll return to shore and go again once another wave approaches. Although somewhat similar to surfing, some differences set the two far apart.
For one, skimboards are smaller and don’t have any fins. And two, while surfing involves going out into the water, skimboarders stay on the shore. An addictive activity that will get your child hooked for hours attempting to pull off the perfect skim! What’s more, this could be your child’s gateway into surfing, so see if they’re willing to give it a shot!
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Although it has been around for thousands of years, stand up paddleboarding has seen a big popularity boost in recent years. Now it’s one of the fastest-growing watersports today.
Be sure to show our top paddleboarding tips for beginners to your children. For instance, your child must know how to swim. Despite being able to paddleboard in the shallows, it is common to fall off when starting out as their sense of balance will be tested. It may seem easy, but once they get out on the water, they will know just how hard it is to be good at it.
Find stand up paddleboarding lessons near you so that you and your family can start to learn.
Finally, it is time for your child to learn how to surf! Surfing is an immensely popular sport across the world, one that is a part of many cultures in the likes of Australia or Hawaii. The chances are that your child has already brought up surfing as it is highly regarded as being a ‘cool’ sport.
Surfing may look effortless by the professionals, but it is a tough sport to master, and many people give up after learning the basics. That being said, children who stick with it can end up racing through beginner levels, mastering some gnarly tricks as they get older. And it will help them stay fit and healthy as a result.
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So there you have it – our thoughts on why watersports are for all the family! Be sure to tag us (@watersports.guru) in your family’s first attempts on Instagram. And, if you have a watersports business of your own, join Watersports Guru today; we can get your business on the map. Add your business right here.