Level 1 Paddlesport Coaches

Congratulations to all new UKCC Level 1 Paddlesport Coaches across East Lothian Schools and Ranger Service

Chris Laud; Julie McCabe; David Gill; Gordon Muchall (all Ross High); Mhairi Walker; Elizabeth McGillivray (Preston Lodge); Leigh Shearer (Ranger Service)

Andrew Berry (Ross High) is well on his way to becoming a UKCC Level 2 Coach

Level 1 coaches from previous years across the authorities school’s include Brian Frost; Gordon Kidd; Anne Cormack (all Preston Lodge); Suzanne Ritchie (North Berwick High)

Becoming a paddlesport coach takes a considerable amount of time and effort (and finance). The enthusiasm shown by all staff in seeking to become paddlesport coaches has been incredible and hopefully it has increased their enthusiasm for paddlesport and that in turn will be passed onto the pupils that they work with.

As a level 1 coach with extra training from the Outdoor Learning Service the coaches are able to work with support and mentoring at a variety of flatwater venues across East Lothian.

Ross High School have already begun a kayaking after school club and will be integrating the paddlepower award scheme and the Cross Stream Challenge into their programme. Ross High are currently undertaking efforts to attempt to get access to the local swimming pool for a series of winter paddling sessions.

Ross High have an ongoing programme of Duke of Edinburgh expeditions through sea kayaking or canoeing and the enthusiasm and dedication of the level 1 coaches will be able to support and promote this.

Preston Lodge High School already have access to their local pool on a Friday afternoon and use it wisely to help promote paddlesport as a means of training to undertake Duke of Edinburgh Award expeditions.

The next aim of the Outdoor Learning Servcie is to try and secure funding for a fleet of polo boats and associated equipment with the thought of setting up canoe polo league across East Lothian Schools.

Ice Station Musselburgh

Five hardy souls completed a Foundation Safety and Rescue Course this past Saturday. The course went ahead complete with snow and extremely low temperatures within Musselburgh Lagoons. All participants coped very well with the conditions; enjoyed the course and relished the opportunity to finish with a hot shower.

The one day course is a pre-requisite to becoming a Scottish Canoe Association UKCC Level 1 Paddlesport Coach

East Lothian’s Outdoor Learning Service will be running another FSRT course on the 5th March 2011. For further information or to book please contact mpegg@eastlothian.gov.uk

For a full screen slideshow please click here

Would YOU like to take pupils Canoeing or Kayaking?


A fantastic opportunity to become a  paddlesport coach – all easily accessible within East Lothian

BCU/UKCC Level 1 Paddlesport coaching course

12 & 13 March 2011  0900-1700 (weekend)

This course is being run at the Outdoor Learning Service base here in Musselburgh by the Scottish Canoe Association

The cost of the 2 day course will be £25 (normally £100 but subsidised by 75% for SCA members)

Please click here to view the coaching pathway for paddlesport



2 star paddlesport award – Syllabus here. Free from you Outdoor Learning Service. Certification costs of £5

Dates of training and assessment you can access if needed. These only need to attended if you need your 2 star award

26 Nov 2010   1300-1700

10 Dec 2010    1300-1700

15 Jan 2011     1000-1500

11 Feb 2011    1300-1700

25 Feb 2011    1300-1700


Foundation Safety and Rescue Training Course – free from your Outdoor Learning Service. Certification costs (£10?)

27 Nov 2010     0900 – 1600


Be a member of the SCA (Scottish Canoe Association) £30


Before the course you will require to register for the award at a cost of £39

Total cost  approx £110 plus your time and effort. This is fantastic value to become a UKCC (United Kingdom Coaching Certificate) level 1 coach in paddlesport.

The 2 day course will run here at your Outdoor Learning Base at Musselburgh. The FSRT course will be run here at Musselburgh. Training and Assessment for 2 star paddlesport will be held at various locations across East Lothian: River Tyne; River Esk; Whitadder reservoir; Musselburgh Lagoons; Prestonpans swimming pool.

With guidance/ observation and further experience you will be able to use boats from the outdoor learning service at specific venues (Musselburgh Lagoons/ Seafield Pond – West Barns/ River Tyne at Haddington/ Prestonpans Swimming pool) to coach your own pupils or indeed fellow staff. As a level 1 coach you will receive frequent invites from your Outdoor Learning Service to assist on paddlesport course and expeditions. See some of our expedition reports and photos on the Outdoor Learning Website

In the first instance please get in touch with Martyn Pegg as soon as possible

Please note that this is for teaching staff only (evidence of teaching qualification required) and for those that have some experience of paddlesport and an interest in coaching/teaching others in the sport.

Of paddles and paperwork …

Turn on your speakers and click on the above to play, or click here to view and download the slides and video clips stored in Picasa

Last week I attended the UK CC L2 Canoe and Kayak Coach Training at Glenmore Lodge. As always we were well looked after – in fact I’m sure I’ve returned a couple of pounds heavier.

The course was delivered by Ian Sherington and Shaun Roberts of the Lodge, observed and often ably assisted by the George Fell. The instruction was excellent, they even managed to lay on a whole week of no wind and lots of sun. The Level 2 Coaching Award is up a notch from the Level 1 in terms of the slickness and variety of coaching styles expected, the higher standard you can coach and assess paddlers to (up to the 2 Star Award) – and most importantly it demands that you are able to design and deliver a progressive set of sessions to your students.

So why the post title ‘Of paddles and paperwork …‘ ? Yes, it was a good course we had a lot of time out on the water in excellent conditions … but unfortunately too many valuable course hours were required to be taken up with helping us candidates to navigate our way through the labyrinth of UKCC / BCU paperwork, evidence gathering and down-right bureaucracy that is required to be collated for our assessment. I believe that moves are afoot to simplify this process and this really can’t come too soon. It’s one thing asking those of us who need these awards for their jobs to do this – it’s quite another to expect those who volunteer to go through this torture.

Anyway I’ll try and put that out of my mind for now and just get on with enjoying my paddling … as with these courses there were lots of laughs to relieve the stress of delivering sessions to your peers, so thanks to Lesley, Andrew, Imogen, Ian, Mark and John for some great banter. And also see Lesley’s Blog for more chat and pictures…

Click on following for a slide-show, or click here to view and download the slides and video clips stored in Picasa

Go Forth – The search for Uri

This past Friday afternoon and Saturday had a Staff development Sea Kayak training course taking place. All participants are working in schools to develop paddlesport within their own situation for the pupils. With the help of the outdoor education service and a large amount of time and effort on their behalf they have all achieved their Scottish Canoe Association UKCC Level 1 coach. They are now all working toward their 3 star Sea kayak award.

Just off the Lamb - no sign of Mr Geller
Just off the Lamb - no sign of Mr Geller

Click here for more images

Friday afternoon we spent just offshore at Longniddry Bents. A fair amount of chop led to some sporting conditions for a bit of rescue practice. Everyone commented on how necessary it is to practice all these things in as realistic conditions as possible.

Saturday the wind dropped to below 10 mph and proved perfect conditions for a trip taking in Bass Rock, Craigleith and The Lamb  ( Mr Uri Geller has recently purchased The Lamb and was planning to camp the night on it on Saturday – we looked carefully but so no sign of the landowner!)

All participants are planning to now further their skills and experience. This course is just one of many offered by the Outdoor Education Service.