Paddling & COVID-19: Getting outside and active, even for short periods, is good for your mental and physical health. That said, we’re all in this together, and we must be responsible — avoid crowds, stay close to home, be prepared and be respectful of other people. The team at the Northern Forest Canoe Trail can’t stress this enough: now is not the time to take unnecessary risks while engaging in outdoor activities. Our the healthcare sector is under enormous stress, and we must be responsible.
A note from the author: So many “educational” reads end up really being an opinion piece. So, Danny wanted to be up front: this is another opinion piece. Many paddlers have a system that works for them and they are entitled to their opinion as well. There is no one method that works better than another. This piece will draw from Danny’s lengthy, 30-year experience in the paddle sports industry and as a paddler. So, we feel there is some good stuff in here to make you a more informed paddler on this topic.
Training wear designed specific for paddling, or cross over from running or cross country ski, will keep you warm and manage perspiration in cooler temps. These items will generally be less of an investment, as we most likely own some already, and be the most comfortable and performance orientated for the high energy expended during your work out.
For the person who is 100% committed to the five tips we gave at the onset of this article and are very confident in their skills, simple training wear may suffice. However, you must be honest with yourself in accessing the risk you are taking. These types of clothes are going to offer little to no insulation against cold water and make swimming very challenging when soaked through.
The odds of a capsize may be low, but are you willing to accept the outcome if something should happen?
More on cold water paddling: