Learn to kayak so you can get great exercise with a view, find a perfect escape after work and explore our inland waterways and coastal areas throughout the year.  Puget Sound is home to the Cascadia Marine Water Trail which has over 75 paddle-in campsites and the NW has tons of lakes, rivers, and estuaries to explore.

This class will prepare you to paddle on your own and will give you the skills to wet exit, re-enter a kayak, stay stable, go over boat wakes and paddle efficiently and injury free. You’ll also learn about kayaks and accessories including clothing.  

I can also help experienced kayakers get to the next level. Contact me if you want to work on specific skills. 

Check out my bookKayaking Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands, 60 Trips‘ 

Core Skills You’ll Gain

  • How to launch and land a kayak.
  • Understanding kayak equipment and clothing.
  • Learn how to wet exit with and without a skirt.
  • Learn a powerful forward stroke requiring minimal effort
  • Learn bomber stability skills to stay drier in rough water.
  • Directional control including how to turn without a rudder. 
  • You’ll gain skills for paddling over boat and wind waves.
  • How to re-enter the kayak with several methods including the paddle float.
  • Paddling in wind – upwind, down and beam (side) winds if available.
  • Learn kayak rescues including the T-rescue.  
  • How to outfit your kayak to hold your gear and accessories.

Skill Prerequisites: NONE

Beginner level. You have had no or limited experience on a board or have limited skills. You aren’t comfortable in bumpy water and/or have only paddled a few times. You should know how to swim.  

Class Details:

Class Size: 1 – 2 people. 

Location: Ballard Elks beach on Shilshole Bay OR Portage Bay in Seattle. This class can also be taught at a location of your choice for the same cost in Seattle. Add additional travel fees (and/or ferry fees) for classes outside of Seattle.

Duration: 2.5 hours. Learn at your own pace.

Schedule: Private classes only around your schedule. 

Instructor to Student Ratio: 1:1 / 1:2

Instructor Follow-up: Rob will send you a summary of skills you learned in class. He’ll stay in touch with you after class to assist with finding paddling equipment and offer tips on where to paddle in the NW.


2 Person Rate: 149 with rentals / 129 with your gear

Individual Rate (1-1): 299 with rentals / 273 with your own gear. 

Rental Gear Option Includes: Sea kayak, paddle, PFD (life vest), wetsuit, booties, gloves.

Alumni/Repeat Classes: $20 off per person (Includes SUP alumni)

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