Sea Kayak Lessons 101 and 102 Info Packet

Thank you for registering for lessons with Potomac Paddlesports! We are patient professionals who are highly experienced at teaching beginners how to kayak. This packet of information is provided to help keep you organized and ensure that you are fully prepared for your lessons. Please review all of this information carefully at least one week prior to your lesson. You may contact us at any time with questions by calling 301-881-2628 or by emailing us at info@potomacpaddlesports.com. We look forward to paddling with you!

Contents

This packet contains the following:

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about preparedness and scheduling:

  1. You have up to two years from your first lesson to complete any membership package - please practice with us or on your own between lessons to qualify for the next lesson.
  2. Please schedule or re-schedule your events online using your scheduling login - and check your wait list status regularly - wait listing for an event is a commitment on your part to attend. We recommend checking on Monday and Thursday before weekend events. You WILL NOT be notified when you are automatically moved off the wait list, so be sure to check using your scheduling login. The roster generally solidifies the week of the event (or hour before practice) and we make final adjustments to capacity at that time. Adjustments made on a Friday that result in your being added are accompanied by a manual text and phone call from us. Please respond promptly. Remove yourself from the wait list if you can no longer attend. CLICK HERE FOR YOUR SCHEDULE PAGE.
  3. You have up until 72 hours before your class starts to reschedule yourself online. Students who do not reschedule themselves online in time or who don't show up forfeit their lesson. No exceptions are made to this policy and we do not offer refunds. The cutoff for practice is one hour.
  4. CLICK HERE FOR YOUR SCHEDULE PAGE.
  5. Personal floatation device, paddle, spray skirt,and kayak less than 18 months old are provided at lessons and practice at no additional charge (a $20+/hour value). Please help us keep the equipment clean and in good working condition. If you are bringing your own, please update your Personal info on your schedule page and email us at info@potomacpaddlesports.com.
  6. Please arrive and be prepared fifteen minutes prior to your lesson or practice start time. (Late arrivals will not be admitted to class or practice and will forfeit their lesson.)
  7. All lessons meet and are held rain or shine. A decision to postpone due to lightning or other dangerous conditions is made on-site at the last possible minute. (Mother Nature often cooperates if we wait-and-see.)
  8. Students who are no shows for practice will forfeit future practices.
  9. You'll spend a significant portion of your lessons and practice in the water and some kayaking-specific apparel is required for your safety and comfort - PLEASE BE FULLY PREPARED AND DRESS ACCORDINGLY.
  10. During your lesson, store your car key in a "Hide-a-Key" box somewhere on your vehicle and keep all personal items out of sight (backpacks, laptops, etc.) in your locked vehicle.
  11. Package students may attend free practice clinics indefinitely, providing you have your own kayak after your fourth lesson.
  12. You may repeat any lesson at a discounted rate of 15% - repeating the 102 is a good idea. Please call 301-881-2828 to do so.
  13. For your safety and enjoyment, we request that you keep your personal information up-to-date on your schedule page using the link at the top right that says "Personal info"
  14. CLICK HERE FOR YOUR SCHEDULE PAGE.
  15. Stretch regularly or do yoga.
  16. We are a very small business with a conservation mission, trying to help grow a small industry. If you have a 5 star experience, please help us by leaving a review on our Google Business Page and our Yelp Business Page and also reply to our feedback request or survey emails. If you have anything less than a 5 star experience, call us at 301-881-2628 to discuss your experience, and so that we may have the opportunity to improve or resolve a situation. Thank you!

List of Things to Bring

The following list of things to bring is for your comfort, safety, and enjoyment of your on-water experience with us. ALL ITEMS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED!

  • Event "tickets": electronic proof of purchase (use email), electronic proof of completion of Risk Form by ALL participants (use email), electronic proof ALL participants names appear as "scheduled" for the event date and time (use scheduling login)
  • Appropriate apparel that is warm if wet and dries fast, such as fleece and wicking garments, rain jacket and pants or poncho
  • One liter of water
  • Waterproof snack
  • Allergy medication (required for all severe reactions such as bee stings, peanuts, asthma, etc.)
  • Shoes that can get wet and have excellent traction.
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun hat
  • Hide A Key and or small dry bag - Please stash your own key and belongings on your car or person during events.
  • Insect repellant (Optional)
  • Eyeglass strap (so you don’t loose your expensive prescription lenses)
  • Towel and change of clothes (In case you capsize.)
  • Tips for instructor (Suggested)
  • Safety Lesson (102):
  • Paddle float
  • Bilge pump
  • Rescue Step - This is a KEY tool to make self and assisted rescues faster and easier! Usually it's a piece of webbing with a float, sometimes called a stirrup.
  • Rescue Knife
  • Tow System
  • Wetsuit, or semi dry top and wetsuit bottoms (cool weather)
  • Glasses or Contact Wearers:
  • Eyeglass strap (So you don't lose your expensive prescription lenses)
  • Note to those who wear contacts: Bring extra. You will need to close your eyes while underwater.
  • Directions to Lesson Location

    Directions to Riley’s Lock in Poolesville, MD.
     
    From I-495
    1. Take exit 39 for River Rd/Rt-190 west toward Potomac
    2. Merge onto MD-190/River Rd
    3. After 11.5 miles, you will come to a dead end.
    4. Turn left onto River Rd
    5. After 0.7 miles, turn left onto Rileys Lock Rd.
    6. Proceed to a boat ramp on your right and parking area on your left. You will see a kayak trailer and a Potomac Paddlesports instructor in the parking lot on your left.

    PLEASE have your clothing and supplies ready to go fifteen minutes prior to start time so that we can start promptly.

    Note: Vehicles have been broken into at this parking lot. Please leave all valuables at home and bring a small drybox for your credit cards and cash. You can store your car key in a hidden key box on the underside of your fender.