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12 Reasons To Start Paddling

A reprint from Canoe & Kayak Magazine on the many reasons for getting on the water.

Skills & Tips

A Paddler's Dictionary

A reprint from Canoe & Kayak Magazine on many boating terms.

Skills & Tips

ABCs of PFDs

PFD selection and Coast Guard Approval Ratings for PFDS

Safety

Adventure Medical Kits from NRS

Medical supplies grouped together in clear, resealable waterproof bags. Medical kits made specifically for camping, backpacking, and paddling

Safety

Avoiding Foot Entrapment

Learn what foot entrapment is, how and why it's deadly, and how to avoid it while out on the river. Sometimes swimming is unavoidable.

Safety

Balancing Game: Yoga Therapy

River runner and yoga teacher Andria Davis explores the mind-body connection and how it can help us recover from injuries.

Skills & Tips

Beginners Guide to Kayak Terminology

Shop NRS for kayaking gear, inflatable kayak, kayak equipment, kayak accessory, kayak sale, playboat river kayak, and whitewater kayak.

How To Choose

Boaters and Dehydration

Body fluid loss can lead to serious consequences. How to recognize it and prevent it.

Skills & Tips

Boating Safety for Infants & Small Children

Learn about boating safety for infants and small children. When is it safe to take your kids out on the river, and what should you bring to ensure safety?

Trip Planning, Safety

Boating Safety's Five Golden Rules

No matter what kind of boating activity you participate in, these five golden rules will go a long way toward ensuring that your trips on the water end safely.

Safety

Cold Shock: 5 Golden Rules for Boating in Cold Water

Cold shock is the leading cause of death in paddlesports. Prevent it with 5 Golden Rules for Boating in Cold Water.

Safety

Cold Water Protection and Hypothermia

Walbridge on the dangers of hypothermia and how to protect yourself.

Safety

Cold-Water Layering

Base, insulating and outer layers allow you to add and remove pieces to match changing conditions, and help your body maintain a safe, comfortable temperature.

How To Choose, Safety

Coming Back Is Mandatory

Learn the limits of your skills and equipment and stay safe.

Safety

Don't Boat Without Number Two

The importance of wearing a life jacket (PFD) when boating.

Safety

Dry Drowning Revisited

Dry drowning can occur on the water and on land. Learn more about it.

Safety

Dry Drowning, by Walt Bammann

An important safety article on laryngospasm ("dry drowning")

Safety

Dry Drowning: An Update

Excellent feedback from readers about this important boating safety issue.

Safety

Dry Drowning: Feedback

Read some user feedback to our original Dry Drowning article and learn the takeaways our readers had to share that helps them stay safe on the water.

Safety

Educate Yourself and Trust Your Judgment

Build your confidence by increasing your boating skills.

Skills & Tips

Emptying Kayaks on the River

Team NRS paddler Stephen Wright demonstrates the proper technique for emptying kayaks on the river so you can push or tow it to shore.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Equipping Your PFD for Rescue

Experienced rescuers equip their life jackets with pulleys, prussics, crib sheets, carabineers and other essential items.

Safety

Fall Boating Safety

Your cold season gear has probably been stored away. Its time to get it out and inspect it to make sure its ready to go.

Safety

File a Boater's Trip Plan

Use this convenient Boater's Trip Plan form and always let at least one person know where you're going boating and when you plan to return.

Safety

Finding Swiftwater Rescue Classes

When things do go wrong, only boaters with swiftwater rescue training can effectively help themselves and others.

Safety

First Aid on the Water

Stop thinking about getting a medical kit for first aid on the water and just do it! You and your paddling partners will be glad that you did.

Safety

Gear Checklist Rafting Apparel

What rafting apparel should you pack? Behold! A printable equipment and gear checklist. Download and customize now.

Trip Planning

Gear Checklist Whitewater Apparel

What whitewater kayaking gear and apparel should you pack? Behold! A printable equipment and gear checklist. Download and customize now.

Trip Planning

Gear Checklist Whitewater Gear

Download and customize this checklist of whitewater kayaking gear to make sure you get to the put-in with all the kit you need.

Trip Planning

Gear Checklists

A collection of downloadable checklists for camping, rafting, kayaking, and more to help you organize your trip.

Trip Planning

Gear Storage Ideas

Putting your boating gear away until next weekend, or next year, there are steps you should take to protect your investment.

Maintenance & Repair

Good Decisions: How Smart Kayaking Safety Techniques Saved a Kayaker's Day

This article explains how a series of smart choices and quick thinking saved the day when a successful waterfall run suddenly turned scary.

Safety

H2 Glue Instructions

Materials and instructions for working with H2 Glue, and adhesive for outfitting your kayak with minicell or ethafoam foams and paddings.

Maintenance & Repair

High-Water Safety Guidelines

High water can dramatically change rivers and requires that we redouble our ongoing emphasis on safety. Learn more about the guidelines of high-water safety.

Safety

High-Water Wisdom

High-water brings more dangers to your boating. Learn tips to avoid them.

Safety

How Much Risk Should Boaters Take?

Life is about balancing risk and reward, and so is boating.

Safety

How to Catch a Throw Bag

Rescue instructor Jim Coffey shows how to catch and position a throw rope to place minimum strain on you and the on-shore rescuer.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Choose a Whitewater Paddle

Selecting the perfect whitewater kayaking paddle is an important decision; knowing how to choose the proper blade shape will make paddling more fun.

How To Choose

How to Choose the Right Life Jacket

Learn about the types of life jackets most commonly worn by boaters so you can choose the right life jacket for your paddling needs.

How To Choose, Safety

How to Choose the Right Life Jacket for Kayaking

The life jacket is your most important on-the-water safety tool. Choose one that fits well and will be comfortable enough to always wear.

How To Choose, Safety

How to Do Live Bait Rescue

Jumping in to rescue a swimmer can sometimes be the best technique. This video from Jim Coffey shows how to perform a live bait rescue.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Dress for Kayaking

Ken Whiting shares how to dress for kayaking and covers the base layers, insulating layers and outerwear pieces you need to safely extend your paddling season.

How To Choose, Safety

How to Identify Your Boat

Here's how to identify your boat's Hull Identification Number (HIN), or "boat serial number" / "boat ID number".

Skills & Tips

How to Install an NRS Kayak Back Band

Installing a back band in your kayak is easy. In this video, we give you the step by step instructions for removing an old seat and installing a new back band.

Maintenance & Repair

How to Install D-Rings and Footcups

NRS Repairs shows you the best ways to install D-rings and footcups and permanently glue them to Hypalon-, PVC- and urethane-coated materials

Maintenance & Repair, Skills & Tips

How to Install Kayak Footbraces

This video provides easy step-by-step instructions for installing Werner Kayak Footbraces.

Maintenance & Repair

How to Make a Flip Line

Build your own flip line! Whether you're kayaking, rafting or canoeing, you'll find multiple uses for this easy-to-build webbing sling or guide belt.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Make a Shallow Water Crossing

Rescue Instructor Jim Coffey describes techniques that an individual or a group of rescuers can use to safely and efficiently perform a shallow water crossing.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Practice the Kayak Wet Exit

How to practice the kayak wet exit, your back-up plan for when your roll doesn't work.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Prepare for Medical Emergencies When Boating

Learn how to prepare for medical emergencies when boating, kayaking, or rafting when embarking on journeys that take you outside the 911 system.

Safety

How To Prevent Boating Injuries

Body conditioning, proper technique and equipment prevent injury.

Safety

How to Quickly Coil a Throw Rope

Knowing how to quickly coil your throw rope for a second toss is an essential skill. Heres a trick to help you make a fast, tangle-free second throw.

Safety

How to Repair an Oar or Paddle Blade

How to repair an oar or paddle blade using our G/Flex Epoxy Adhesive, providing a strong bond that's much more flexible than other epoxies

Maintenance & Repair

How to Repair Leafield C7 Valve

Replacing the plunger, spring and rubber seal is a snap on the Leafield C7 Valve

Maintenance & Repair

How to Restuff a Rescue Throw Bag

Learn how to properly re-stuff a rescue throw bag with this video. This is an essential skill for the rope to smoothly deploy when the bag is tossed.

Safety

How to Roll a Strap for Storage

In this Quick Tips video, we show you how to roll your straps for tidy storage.

Skills & Tips

How to Stay Warm When Kayaking

Learn what gear to wear to stay warm when boating or kayaking in cold weather and water conditions. Have fun year-round with these tips from Erin Clancey.

Safety

How To Stretch a Sprayskirt

n this video, we show you how to stretch a sprayskirt to prevent water leakage and implosion.

Skills & Tips

How to Swim in Whitewater

Self rescue by aggressively swimming to shore can be a life-saving maneuver. Rescue instructor Jim Coffey teaches you how to swim in whitewater.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Tie a Taut-Line Hitch Knot

There are some knots every boater should know how to tie, and the Taut-Line Hitch is one of them. Watch this video to learn how it's done.

Skills & Tips

How to Tie the Figure 8 Knot

Demonstrating the tying of the versatile Figure 8 Knot.

Skills & Tips

How to Toss a Throw Bag

The rescue throw bag is a must-carry for whitewater. Rescue instructor Jim Coffey shows the best techniques for accurately getting the rope to the swimmer.

Skills & Tips, Safety

How to Understand River Flows

Cubic feet per second (cfs) is one of the key indicators of river or creek conditions. Learn what this means and how it can affect your trip planning.

Safety

How to Wet Exit a Kayak

This video will show how to wet exit a kayak, helping you to get out smoothly and safely, while hanging on to your paddle and the boat.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Infinity Flotation

Float bags are a necessary accessory for kayakers. They displace water that enters and keep your kayak or canoe afloat while you recover.

How To Choose

Inflatable Repair Adhesives Guide

This video helps you understand when to use such glues as Clifton Hypalon, Shore, Stabond, Clifton Urethane, Vynabond and G/flex Epoxy.

Maintenance & Repair

Instructions: NRS Shore Adhesive

Learn how to properly use and handle Shore Adhesive, a great one-part adhesive for Pennel Orca, Hypalon and other synthetic rubber-coated materials.

Maintenance & Repair

Instructions: Stabond Adhesive

Learn to patch tears or holes in your PVC rafts or catarafts. hypalon repair, punctured raft repair, and neoprene gasket repair.

Maintenance & Repair

Kayak and Canoe Car Top Basics

The safe way to carry kayaks and canoes on top of your vehicle.

Trip Planning

Kayak Outfitting Tips for Playboating

Proper kayak outfitting is essential to getting the most comfort and performance out of your playboat.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Basic Kayak Maintenance

Kayaks are simple machines, but some basic kayak maintenance will make yours last longer. Ken Whiting gives some maintenance tips to take care of your kayak.

Maintenance & Repair

Kayaking Fundamentals: Do a Kayak Hand Roll

Kayak instructor Ken whiting demonstrates the three main elements of the hand roll: the setup, the catch and the recovery.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Execute the Extended Paddle Roll

Kayak instructor Ken Whiting shows you how to execute the extended paddle kayak roll so its there when you need it.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: How to Do a High Brace

Expert kayaker Ken Whiting shows you how to execute the high brace in this second Kayaking Fundamentals video.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: How to Do a Sculling Brace

The sculling brace is an essential kayak technique that will help you advance in your paddling.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: How to Do the Hip Snap

In Part V of our Kayaking Fundamentals video series, instructor Ken Whiting shows you how to practice the hip snap on your own or with a partner.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Mastering the C-to-C Kayak Roll

The C-to-C kayak roll is a great technique to have in your kayak roll quiver. This video breaks the roll setup into two distinct steps.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Mastering the Kayak Sweep Roll

Learn how the kayak sweep roll is a very efficient way to roll your sea kayak or whitewater boat. Its smooth, low impact and gives you long-lasting support.

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Mastering the Offside Roll

Learning the offside roll and practicing it is important for preventing that unwanted swim

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: Rolling a Kayak in Rough Water

This video will teach you the basics on learning to roll a sea kayak in rough water

Skills & Tips

Kayaking Fundamentals: The Three Golden Rules of Paddling

Watch as Ken Whiting shows you the golden rules of paddling three key concepts that apply to every kind of kayaking.

Skills & Tips

Keeping in Shape for Paddling

Getting in shape and keeping in shape for paddling will help you become a better boater, have more fun, and prevent activity-ending injury.

Skills & Tips

Lend Me Your Ear - About Kayaker's Ear

What you need to know about this serious boater health hazard.

Safety

Let's Stop the Senseless Loss of Life

This helps reinforce the need to wear life jackets, especially when boating in cold water.

Safety

Life Jacket Fiction and Fact

The life jacket is the first line of defense for every paddler. Learn to dispel the misunderstandings, misconceptions and myths about PFDs.

Safety

Loading Kayaks On Your Vehicle

Safely loading kayaks on your vehicle is an important boater skill. NRS paddler Leland Davis shows how to fasten one kayak, or multiples, to your roof rack.

Skills & Tips

Multiday Kayaking Trips

With proper planning and packing, multiday trips in kayaks can be very fun. Learn the tips and techniques you'll need to have a successful outing.

Trip Planning

NRS HydroLock Dry Bags

Boating is wet, but NRS HydroLock Dry Bags are 100% dry. How did we make that happen? Learn more about the HydroLock zip-seal closure.

How To Choose

NRS Inflatable Boat & SUP Guide

Specifics on NRS E-series, Otter series, Otter Livery series, NRS catarafts, NRS Patriots, NRS SUP Boards and NRS Inflatable Kayaks.

How To Choose

NRS Inflatables Pre-2006

Specifics on pre-2006 era NRS E-series, Otter series, Otter Livery series, NRS catarafts, and NRS Inflatable Kayaks.

How To Choose

Nutrition: Fueling the Fires Within

Learn the nutrition and hydration dos and donts to help you stay warm and safe as the weather and water get cold.

Skills & Tips

Overcoming Fear - New Boaters

Suggestions for overcoming the fear produced by a scary swim.

Skills & Tips

Packing for International Paddling

Packing for an international boating adventure can be intimidating. World traveler Kyle "Smitty" Smith offers his expertise in figuring it out.

Trip Planning

Preparing for Cold-Season Boating

How to outfit yourself for cold water boating protection.

Trip Planning, Safety

Preventing Shoulder Injuries

Some helpful tips on preventing boater shoulder injuries.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Putting Rescue Skills to Use on the Water (Episode 12)

Rescue expert Jim Coffey shows how swiftwater skills can be put to use on a typical day on the river with a mixed group of kayakers in this video.

Safety

Quick Guide: G/flex Epoxy Adhesive

G/flex is an excellent boat repair material that makes a tough, waterproof repair. In this quick guide, learn which version will work best for your repairs.

Maintenance & Repair

Quick Guide: Temporary Field Boat Repairs

Learn how to make temporary boat repairs in the field by adding just a few pieces of equipment to your kit.

Maintenance & Repair

Rafting Put-in Safety Talk

The basics of a good put-in safety orientation for rafters.

Safety

Rescue Bag Basics

Learn how the NRS Rescue Throw Bag, a vital piece of safety equipment required for every boater, can be used to rescue a swimmer or help unpin a boat.

Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 10: Foot Entrapment Intro

Swiftwater rescue instructor Jim Coffey introduces techniques for assessing foot entrapment situations and formulating a plan to assist the victim.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 3: Swiftwater Swimming

Swimming efficiently in whitewater is essential for self-rescue, rescuing others and building your kayaking, rafting and canoeing confidence.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 4: Throw Bag Techniques

This video covers throw bag techniques including throwing, safely bringing in the swimmer, bracing, and how to catch and hold the rope if you're the swimmer.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 5: Victim Contact Techniques

This video covers victim contact techniques for safely paddling, swimming and wading out to the victim

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 6: The Rescue Harness

This video shows you how to safely and effectively use the quick-release rescue harness on your life jacket.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 7: Live Bait Rescue

This video shows several different live bait techniques and describes the best ways to do them safely

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 8: Boat Extractions

This video demonstrates how to retrieve a pinned kayak or canoe using methods ranging from pushing and pulling to setting up a mechanical advantage system.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Ep. 9: Self Rescue

Whitewater kayakers and canoeists should learn the basic techniques for self rescue. Watch how to swim to safety and avoid dangerous foot entrapment.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue Film Series: Episode 11: Foot Entrapment Strategies

Swiftwater rescue instructor Jim Coffey introduces foot entrapment strategies for making a rescue, assessing risk for the team, and determining tempo.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Rescue for River Runners: Ep. 1: Getting Started

Learn what gear you need to have with you, from your rescue PFD, protective apparel, throw bags, rescue hardware to first aid kit and communication devices.

Safety

Rescue for River Runners: Ep. 2: Team Strategy

Smart teamwork and preparedness make everyone safer on the river with the swiftwater rescue playbook.

Safety

Rescue Vest Aren't For Everyone

Learn about the specialized features of rescue life jackets and PFDs, as well as when, and when not, they should be used.

Safety

Restorative Yoga for Boaters

Not all exercise routines make you more tired. You can reduce fatigue from paddling and the daily grind with these yoga techniques from Andria Davis.

Skills & Tips

Riding the Flood

The dangers of high water boating and how to avoid them.

Safety

River & Rapid Difficulty Ratings

You will encounter two different class rating systems for rivers and their rapids. Learn how these systems differ and where they're most commonly used.

Trip Planning, Safety

Rolling a Kayak

World Champion kayaker, Ken Whiting, gives pointers on learning to roll your kayak.

Skills & Tips

Safety and Rescue Discussion Group

Charlie Walbridge and NRS folks discuss safety and rescue training.

Safety

Screw-Mounted Tie-Down Kit Instructions

Screw-mounted Tie-Down Kit for canoes and sea kayaks. A great way to add deck rigging to your sea kayak.

Maintenance & Repair

Search and Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking (SARSAT)

A New Tool for Outdoor Enthusiasts - Search and Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking! (SARSAT)

Safety

Stretching Exercises for Paddlers

Stretching is essential for preventing muscle strain as well as healing injuries.

Skills & Tips

Summit Valve Identification

Identify the Difference between a Summit 1 and a Summit 2 Valve.

Maintenance & Repair

Sunscreen Labeling Revisions

How the new FDA sunscreen regulations affect your health.

Safety

That Time Mike Almost Drowned

Flush drowning is a real hazard, even when paddling with a well-trained, close-knit group. Learn lessons from this video to avoid a fatal outcome.

Safety

The Fine Nine

Preparing yourself to prevent or recover from on-the-water emergencies.

Trip Planning, Safety

The Hand of God Rescue for Whitewater Kayaking

Team NRS paddler Stephen Wright shows you how to help a fellow paddler roll upright with the hand of God rescue if they've flipped and are having trouble.

Skills & Tips, Safety

The Kayaker's Pledge: Improving Your Kayak Roll

NRS ambassador Devon Barker-Hicks shares one of her favorite tools for rolling better the "Kayaker's Pledge."

Skills & Tips

The Learning Curve: Ep. 1 Kayak Road Trips

The Learning Curve aims to share those little tricks that experienced boaters know but that the usual how-to books and videos dont tell you

Trip Planning

Too Much Heat or Not Enough

Learn how and why to make a hypothermia wrap: a very efficient way to warm someone suffering from hypothermia with the materials you already have.

Safety

USGS WaterAlert Service

Service gives email or text message alerts on river flows.

Trip Planning

Using Yoga to Strengthen Your Hips for Kayaking

River runner and yoga instructor Andria Davis shows you some yoga techniques to help improve flexibility and strengthen your hips for paddling.

Skills & Tips

Werner Construction & Design

Learn how Werner designs and builds their kayak paddles. Swing weight, straight or bent shaft, dihedral? We explain so you can feel confident in your purchase.

How To Choose

West System G/flex Epoxy Adhesive

G/flex Epoxy is a resilient two-part epoxy that gives a superior waterproof bond to plastics, metals, fiberglass and more. Add some to your repair kit.

Maintenance & Repair

Whitewater & Touring Kayak Paddle Sizing Guides

Find the whitewater paddle that is the best fit for you.

How To Choose

Whitewater Kayak & Canoe: Rack Tie-down Instructions

Instructions to secure your kayak or canoe to a car top rack using tie down straps.

Skills & Tips

Whitewater Kids!

Tips on introducing young kids to the sport of kayaking.

Skills & Tips

Winter Paddling at its Warmest

Team NRS kayaker Devon Barker-Hicks gives gear recommendations for staying warm while paddling in icy waters.

Trip Planning, Skills & Tips, Safety

Winter Rolling Tune-Up

Your local swimming pool is a great place for perfecting your kayak roll. Team NRS kayaker Devon Barker-Hicks gives valuable tips for getting it dialed in.

Skills & Tips, Safety

Yoga for Boaters' Back Pain

Core strength is a paddler's key to relief from back pain. Andria Davis shows you how to use yoga to strengthen your body's core to help prevent back pain.

Skills & Tips

Yoga for Boaters' Shoulder Pain

Don't let shoulder problems keep you from boating. With good technique and some guidance from Andria Davis, yoga can help you reduce pain and prevent injuries.

Skills & Tips

Yoga for Off-Season Paddling Fitness

Cold or dry times can be a bummer for paddlers. But as author Andria Davis reminds us, the off-season gives you an opportunity to rejuvenate your body and mind.

Skills & Tips