Saturday the 17th of August Shaw’s bridge was overrun with kayakers, sit on toppers and open boaters of the female variety with a fantastic representation of experience, ages and geographical spread of Northern Ireland. Was there a shoe sale on I hear you cry? Clearly not, it was the first ever Paddle Like Females (PLF) open day. Advertised though CANI, all the clubs and a few of the outdoor providers the primary purpose of this day was to meet and greet female paddlers with the hope of recruiting them to the PLF association.
The first session of the day after initial registration was a trip up the river in the open boats which provided an opportunity for trying out new craft for some people and for the leaders to get to know the group better. This was followed up by a leisurely lunch in the sun where a cup of tea and a proper chin wag was had. After lunch there was a land based session to give people a chance to practice their throw bag rescue skills which lead on to the throw bag Olympic Games where despite people’s best efforts to play it cool the competitive streaks all came out. Once the blood was sufficiently pumping from running about, it was into the kayaks and out on the water again for some more craic and games finishing up with a game of polo which everyone seemed to enjoy. Once everyone was off the water and changed everyone provided feedback and suggestions for events and what they would like to get out of the association providing valuable info and ideas that we are hopefully going to implement over the coming months. Overall the day was a success, a day of chilled out paddling with a bit of craic, getting to know everyone and everyone enjoyed it and hopefully will be coming back to our next events. Photos of the day are on the PLF facebook page and will shortly be on the CANI facebook page as well.
For anyone who doesn’t know the PLF association is a group of females with the ambition of increasing the number of female paddlers in all types of paddlesport at all levels, to have more females competing and more female coaches and leaders. Our dream is that someday the association will no longer be needed as there will be an abundance of female paddlers, coaches and athletes in all the clubs across the country. We will be organising more female orientated events and are actively recruiting more members. Some of the next events over the coming year will be a whitewater day, a water confidence day, a sprint kayak day, a family day paddle and a rec paddle to name a few. If there are other events or things that you should think the association should be doing please get in contact and let us know, no idea is stupid or pointless. To contact us if you would like to join, find out more info and future dates for events please find us on facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Our thanks goes out to Mobile Team Adventure for the loan of equipment and kit on the day and to all the ladies who came on the day.