Since restrictions have been lifted somewhat, the Plurabelle Paddlers have started training again using our O1’s – kayaks with an ‘outrigger’ which can be paddled using the traditional dragon boat stroke.
There is a rudder on the O1 and inside the boat, at toe level, there is a small peg, which allows the paddler steer the boat. You have to remember that there is always that pesky outrigger, waiting to catch you out if you go too near a canal bridge or worse, another paddler.
But it’s great fun and gradually more and more Plurabelles have been trying them out. Chris Barnes, who is overseeing the O1 training, says there are now 36 people availing of the training and the numbers are growing weekly. The training is undertaken under IDBA rules and there is a strict regime of cleaning the boats and equipment down – both before and after use.
Thanks to Chris and all the helms who are giving of their time and energy to bring us back on the water again.
The photos (thanks Mairead!) show some of the routines the Plurabelles go through while launching and paddling the O1’s.