Got A Paddle? San Diego Canoe and Kayak Team seeks new crew members

The San Diego Canoe and Kayak Team (SDCKT) is based on Fiesta Island in San Diego. The team was founded by head coach Chris Barlow, a USA Olympic Medal-winning kayak athlete and competes with teams across the world.

Recently, SDCKT has been competing locally, in Newport Beach, La Jolla, Long Beach, Oceanside and Fiesta Island.

The team practices Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturday mornings. The routine involves timed runs, lifting, pull-ups, core exercises, and trails on the water. Athletes can paddle in different types of kayaks and canoes, and are usually paired with a vessel matching their skill level.

The club offers free trials (ages 7-17) on Saturday mornings. There are also different teams associated with the club — the Racing Team is more intense, while the Development Team focuses on learning the basic techniques.

The team is open to anyone interested — one of the youngest members is 5 years old and one of the oldest is age 70! There are six more races in the current Ocean Series, the next one in Santa Barbara.

San Diego will host the USA Canoe Kayak Sprint Nationals July 29 to Aug. 2, 2015 at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista. The 2015 racing season includes races from Newport Beach to Dana Point.

On a personal note, I’ve been a member of the high school racing team since September 2014 and enjoy every minute of it. We San Diegans are so fortunate to have such an opportunity right in our own backyard. There is no excuse to not give this exciting and thrilling sport a try — it may just change your life!

• To see the schedule of races and get information about the San Diego Canoe and Kayak Team, visit, call team manager Gerry Barlow (858) 273-0063 or e-mail: