N. Michigan Classes

PaddlingExercises-Blue TextI am pleased to be offering classes again in beautiful Northern Michigan in 2018. Classes will be held in the Traverse City area.


The Introduction to Kayaking (Level 1) skills course is a full-day program that will provide you with the skills, knowledge, and abilities to be safe and confident on the water. A boat with sealed bow and stern bulkheads is recommended to participate in capsize and rescue technique activities. Spray skirts will not be used during this class. Some of the topics covered include:

  • Personal and group equipment
  • On and off water safety and etiquette
  • Safe launching and landing
  • Strokes to maneuver your boat forward, backward, stopping, turning, and sideways
  • Bracing to avoid capsize
  • Controlled capsize and wet exit
  • Deep water exit and re-entry
  • Solo and assisted rescue techniques

Cost: $99 per participant

Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Location: Arbutus Lake, 20 minutes SE of Traverse City, MI

Choose your class date:




The Essentials of Kayak Touring (Level 2) skills course is a full-day program that will provide you with the skills, knowledge, and abilities to be safe and confident on the water. This class extends and refines the skills explored in the Level 1 class. A boat with sealed bow and stern bulheads is required for this class. A spray skirt is recommended but not required. Some of the topics covered include:

  • Controlled capsize and wet exit with a spray skirt
  • Improve efficiency of strokes to maneuver your boat forward, backward, stopping, turning, and sideways
  • Using edging to improve maneuverability
  • Use of low brace for support and to avoid capsize
  • Introduction of low brace turns and draw strokes
  • Solo and assisted rescue techniques
  • Safety procedures, preparedness, and equipment

Cost: $99 per participant

Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Location: Bowers Harbor, Old Mission Peninsula, Traverse City, MI

Choose your class date:




The Coastal Kayak Strokes and Maneuvers Refinement course is designed to assist coastal kayakers refining basic and advancing strokes and maneuvers. Participants should have successfully completed a Level 2 or equivalent training. This full-day program will emphasize the following skills:

  • Improving efficiency in your forward, reserve, and sweep strokes
  • Preventing capsize through use of low and high bracing
  • Developing greater boat positioning abilities through refinement and application of active draw strokes
  • Performing maneuvers using high/low brace turns, bow/stern rudders, and stationary draws
  • Practicing self and assisted rescue techniques

Cost: $99 per participant

Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Location: Bohemia Beach, Cedar, MI

Choose your class date:



The Introduction to Surf and Rescue Skills class will lead you through a day of fun and excitement.

  • Launching and landing in surf (condition dependent)
  • Kayak surfing (condition dependent)
  • Self and assisted rescues in active water

Cost: $99 per participant

Time: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Date: To be scheduled soon

Location: This course will be held in Northern Michigan, somewhere between Frankfort and Elk Rapids, depending on expected conditions. We will be able to identify the exact location within a couple days of the class based on weather.


Class cost does not include boat, paddle, and PFD. You can bring your own equipment or rentals are available through several local outfitters, including:

All About Water – delivery throughout the Traverse City area

Class Policies

Before reserving your spot in any of classes or trips, please read the following carefully:

  • All trips or classes are held rain or shine. Severe weather or weather unsuitable for your skill level will result in it being rescheduled for a later date.
  • You will be required to read and sign a waiver form prior to participation in any class or trip.
  • All participants will wear a properly fitted personal flotation device whenever on the water.
  • You will need to have appropriate headwear, clothing, and footwear (water shoes or sandals that stay on) rain gear, and extra clothes just in case.
  • Sunscreen is mandatory.
  • Bring lots of water and sports drinks!
  • Energy bars and light snacks are highly recommended.
  • Lunch is not provided for classes or trips unless specifically stated in the description.
  • If you wear eyeglasses, please wear a leash for them! If you wear contacts, please bring an extra pair in case you lose them.
  • Electronics on the water – AT YOUR OWN RISK – If you choose to bring a phone, camera, key fob, or anything electronic, get a dry box for them at any local sporting goods store, or leave them back on dry land!

Please, arrive to the class/trip at least 30 minutes prior to start. If you are running late, please call me immediately. Be considerate of the others in your group. Please call me at 630-269-8992.

Cancellations:

  • You can cancel up to 7 days before the event and receive a full refund.
  • If you cancel within 4 – 6 days before the event, you will receive 50% back
  • Cancellations within 3 days of event, no refunds unless we can get someone to take your place in which case you would receive a 50% refund.
  • If a medical emergency should arise at the last minute, please call us. We will try to re-schedule you into another class in the future, but we cannot provide a guarantee. Documentation may be requested.
  • Cancellations at our discretion due to weather will be rescheduled for a later date or a full refund will be given.
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