Paddlesport Safety & Rescue

British Canoeing Paddlesport Safety & Rescue Training

The Paddlesport Safety and Rescue (PSR) is for all paddlers irrespective of craft. The main objective is to instruct basic safety and rescue skills that can be applied in a sheltered water environment. On completing the course you will be able to rescue swimmers and other paddlers, in a variety of different boats, from the craft of your choice. You will be able to use several different techniques and deal with basic rescue scenarios.

Course Aim

The course aims to provide the student with the key safety and rescue skills required to operate safely in a sheltered water environment and to be able to deal with common emergencies.

The course has three purposes:

  • To provide the paddler with the necessary skills to enable them to ensure the safety of themselves and others.
  • To provide the paddler with the appropriate rescue skills, to enable them to help themselves and/or others in difficulty.
  • A prerequisite for those who wish to undertake the Paddlesport Instructor qualification.

This is a fun, practical, get wet course. It is useful for anyone who takes part in paddling on flat water even if they do not intend to progress through the coaching scheme.

What’s in the course?

This one day course is designed for paddlers and coaches irrespective of their chosen craft either. The course will cover the following topics:

  • Group management and communication.
  • Safety and rescue protocols.
  • Bank based rescue techniques.
  • Boat based rescue techniques.
  • Self rescue techniques.
  • Rescuing an unconscious or entrapped paddler.
  • Advice and familiarization with safety equipment and its use.


Assessment of this course is continues. As you complete each training unit you will need to show the necessary level of competence for each skill before successful completion of the course.

What experience do I need?

  • You should be a competent paddler before attending this course, holding the BC Explore Award, old 2 Star or equivalent experience (equal to several days paddling).
  • Be able to swim in normal paddlesport clothing suitable for the prevailing conditions.

What equipment do I need?

The following is a list of equipment recommend for the course

  • Tow line OR Tow system
  • Rescue knife
  • Sling
  • Whistle

All equipment will be provided, but please bring your own craft, buoyancy aid, paddle and helmet if you have one. We do retain the right to refuse you using them if they are unsafe. Hot and cold drinks will be provided, bring your own lunch / snacks.

Coach to Paddler Ratio

Maximum coach to paddler ratio 1:8 and requires a minimum of 2 persons for the course to run.


Further details of the BC PSR can be found at:

Contact Us For Booking

Course Dates and Venues