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Paddle Safety

Paddle Responsibly - Video Series

Everyone wants to have fun on the water. The important thing to remember is staying safe while having fun. has partnered with the United States Coast Guard to bring you this 8-part "Safer Paddling" video series that shares valuable safety guidelines, paddling technique pointers, and other various gear tips. These paddling skills and tips will help to ensure your paddling adventures stay fun and danger-free. After the 8-part series, you'll find a few more videos we've selected on safety for paddlers.

Episode 1:
Life Jackets

The first sign of a rookie paddler is someone who isn't wearing a life jacket or is wearing one that doesn't fit properly. This video addresses properly fitting and adjusting a PFD to keep you safe on the water.

Episode 2:
What to Wear

Dressing right is the key to staying safe and comfortable on the water and it's important to dress for the water temperature, not just the air temperature. This video gives some advice and provides examples of clothing to wear while paddling.

Episode 3:
Essential Gear

This video presents a simple mental checklist that every experienced kayaker runs through every time they go paddling. This list includes more than just physical gear, but important suggestions as well like letting friends know where you are going and checking on the latest weather reports before setting off.

Episode 4:
Basic Strokes

There are three essential kayak strokes to know. This video introduces these strokes and demonstrates the proper technique for them.

Episode 5:
Plan Your Trip

Trip planning can really help you avoid mishaps and make your paddling much safer and more enjoyable. This video advises how to plan a safe and fun paddling trip.

Episode 6:
Paddling Traffic Rules

Paddling harbors and marinas with heavy boat traffic can make a trip risky especially if you don't understand the navigation rules that govern all watercraft. Episode 6 lays out some simple guidelines to follow to help make your paddling trip safe for everyone.

Episode 7:
What Happens If I Flip?

Flipping a kayak is always a possibility. This video demonstrates how to re-enter a kayak from the water.

Episode 8:
Calling For Help

This video provides some steps to follow in an emergency and gives proper protocol for calling the Coast Guard for help by radio.

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