Following the 50,000 foot view chart below, World Kayak has positionned itself to help development in whitewater at key levels of it’s maturity. With an emphasis growing on the Grass roots levels with events, skills development and whitewater promotion, World Kayak hopes to work with existing organizations in bringing our sport to where many others are. In a nutshell, World Kayak has set up the following core program areas:
Community Ambassador Programming
World Kayak has sought out Ambassadors whom represent a growing number of paddling regions globally. These community personalities are typically the ones who light the fire of enthusiasm in their particular region. We all know who these folks are… they’re the ones who call you to get out paddling, arrange road trips, volunteer at festivals and much more. World Kayak finds these leaders and puts tools into their hands to help increase local activity and facilitate them… making heightening community fun an easy job for these tireless folks. To become an ambassador for your region, or to volunteer your help with WK programs in your region, contact Colin Kemp at colin(at symbol)worldkayak.com.
World Kayak has a growing number of resources on the web for the paddling community at large. With our unique level of experience on the web, we have a series of portals aimed at supporting our various programs and initiatives. These sites include:
Our Ambassador’s first responsibility is to keep their regional web site up to date. We have developed a full portal for our ambassadors… each region has news, events and local paddling resources listed for all to use. Those community members wishing to contribute to painting the picture of their region can do so by registering for free as members at the worldkayakblogs.com community site. All posts go to the regional page alongside the news and events listings.
Our most popular and most frequently visited portal is our blog-o-sphere for paddlers… www.worldkayakblogs.com. It is here any paddler can set up an account and start blogging. Like blogger and many other sites, this system allows you to set up your own customized blogspot. Each member is related to a region, so your posts are collected by the regional pages showing the outside world the ‘personalities’ of each region. To sign up, go to www.worldkayakblogs.com/wp-signup.php or click on the Sign up link on any of our sites.
Built in the spring of 2010, this portal is a full social network for kayak educators. It allows for educators to converse in and around any part of the whitewater curriculum and encourages continual development of how we teach our sport. It also is a tool for schools to promote with, list their classes and much more. The educators and their classes are distributed to the other World Kayak regional sites and this site features a growing number of ‘gateway models’ , standards suggestions and much more posted by others that can help you grow your business. To sign up for paddleeducation.com, go to www.paddleeducation.com and register.
Set up in 2010 in coordination with the ACA, USACK, the National and State Parks Associations and a growing list of other partners, this site was built in support of growth initiatives in paddlesports in general… not just Whitewater. It is here we begin to cast a wide net into the non-paddling publics to get them turning their heads towards our sport. This site is in coordination with our paddleeducation.com portal in that it will be sending all non-paddlers to Welcome Centers (kayak schools) that are registered with World Kayak.
Our most active program sector is our event program with well over 200 events world wide in 2010, an event series that combines fun competitive events with regional demos and much more.
Our Hometown Throwdowns are fun, easy to run and low stress events set up to encourage both community activity (playing together) and skills development. WK provides organizers with a full ‘event in a box’ kit including rules, scoresheets, prizes and much more enabling anyone to set one up. Better yet, gone is the ‘full weekend of logistics’ mentality as these events run over a couple hours max. Prizes are raffled off so that the competitive angst and walls are taken down… and the only thing left is friendly competition and skills development. Event formats include our freestyle throwdown and Slalom Survivor, a simple obstacle course type race.
Welcome Center Demo Days
With the dawn of our Lets Go Paddling initiative, educators are encouraged to host demo days in their regions. These are instructor-led demo days at a local lake, pool or flatwater section on a river aimed at getting folks into whitewater boats in a free or cheap controlled environment… to get their first fun taste of playing around in a whitewater craft.
Every year World Kayak offers our ambassadors free video premiere opportunities for the night or off season months. This encourages continual contact and activity for communities. It also encourages paddlers to bring non-paddlers to events that expose them to the fun of our sport and the cool communities we hang around with.
World Kayak firmly believes that our educators are our true front lines into the sport. It is key that they remain healthy and at the top of their game as they introduce folks to our sport and support skills development for enthusiasts. To support these efforts, World Kayak has invested in paddleeducation.com and set up a valuable resource for kayak schools and instructors to count on. From Standards in admin, sales, marketing and service delivery available to follow, to community posted instructional tips and tricks, to marketing tools and gateway models, this site will grow to be of great help to any kayak school, club or instructor.