What is Canoe Slalom?
If you have ever wondered about what is Canoe Slalom, you are in the right place. Canoe Slalom is a competitive sport on water. The main goal in this sport, formerly known as Whitewater Slalom, is for the athlete to navigate the canoe or kayak in whitewater river rapids in the fastest time that it is possible. This navigation requires the athlete to navigate its kayak or canoe through a series of gates, with the help of paddles. During this sport, the athletes are faced with harsh conditions, which make canoe slalom one of the hardest sports ever.
This extreme sport dates back from the 1640’s and it became an official sport in the Olympic Games in 1992. Since the beginnings, the International Canoe Federation has governed the sport of canoe slalom.
As we previously said, the goal in this sport is to navigate the kayak or canoe, in order to finish the route, in the fastest possible time. There are five distinct types of canoe slalom: Men’s C – 1, Men’s C – 2, Men’s K – 1, Women’s K – 1 and Women’s C – 1. So, let’s get into detail.
Men’s C – 1 = One man navigates one canoe in a whitewater river rapids.
Men’s K – 1 = One man navigates one kayak in a whitewater river rapids.
Women’s C – 1 = One woman navigates one canoe in a whitewater river rapids.
Women’s K – 1 = One woman navigates one kayak in a whitewater river rapids.
Men’s C – 2 = Two men navigate a double canoe in a whitewater river rapids.
Here is some more information about the rules of this sport including the scores, winning, tiebreaks and penalties.
This sport doesn’t have any scores, the fastest athlete wins the game.
Before a player is announced as a winner, he/she must first progress through the two qualification rounds, which are also known as heats. If an athlete completes these heats, then he/she can progress to the semi-finals. And as you know, those that successfully complete the semi-finals can move on to the finals. The three fastest athletes receive a golden, silver or bronze medal, depending on their speed.
If two athletes complete the qualification rounds, semi-finals or finals together, both of them progress to the next level together, or both of them will share the same medal.
Even though there aren’t any scoring in canoe slalom there are two types of penalties.
If an athlete touches a gate pole with the boat or with a paddle, he/she will be penalized for two seconds.
If an athlete has missed the game, has displaced the gate for more than 45 degrees, or goes through the gate upside down, he/she will be penalized for 50 seconds.
Kayak and Canoe Dimensions
C – 1 Boat: 8kg minimum weight, 0.6m minimum width and 3.50m minimum length.
K – 1 Boat: 8kg minimum weight, 0.6m minimum width and 3.50m minimum length.
C – 2 Boat: 13kg minimum weight, 0.75m minimum width and 4.10m minimum length.
We hope that this article provided you with a helpful insight and answered your question about what is canoe slalom?