Welcome to Calleva’s exciting youth kayak programs!
Our goal is to foster a love for adventure and water sports from an early age by providing a safe and supportive environment for young paddlers, aged 9-18, to explore the thrilling world of kayaking.
Led by our experienced and certified instructors, these courses provide a perfect blend of fun, skill-building, and water safety education. As young kayakers learn, they develop confidence, a sense of teamwork on the river, and a deep appreciation for nature. Whether your child is a complete beginner or has some prior paddling experience, our youth kayak courses promise to be an unforgettable and enriching experience for all. This is where young paddlers develop skills, drive, and a cohort of paddling friends for life.
Find a class
AFTER SCHOOL KAYAKING – May and June, September and October
Drop off is 4pm at Lock 6 or Brookmont community church (Bethesda) on Wednesdays. We will get fitted into a boat and equipment, and put-in on the river. There we will work both one-on-one and with the group on river, rolling, and rescue skills. Pick up will be 6:15 pm at the same location.
Lock 6, Anglers Inn
2023 Fall session begins Wednesday, September 6 and runs for 6 weeks.
Elementary, Middle and High School students can easily learn the skills needed to enjoy the beautiful and exciting Potomac River.
Beginners are brand new to having some experience in kayaks or with our kayaking camps.
Intermediates can T Rescue in whitewater and are working on their roll. They feel VERY comfortable wearing a skirt.
- Meet at the river at 4 pm
- Pick up is 6:15 pm
- Wednesdays: Beginners age 9-14, Intermediates age 11-18, Lock 6
- In each session, students will work toward learning directional control, how to navigate current, how to roll, and safety awareness and rescue skills.
SEND SCHOOL – 6 weeks in Fall (intermediate/ advanced)
As Advanced Kayakers, the Commando Unit meets twice a week for 6 weeks starting September 5. Tuesdays are at Lock 6 and Thursdays at Anglers. A Saturday and a weekend trip included, if qualified. Students should have a solid whitewater roll and experience on Class III+
Feeder Canal, Anglers, Little Falls
Whether the Wild and Wonderful Cheat River, the Potomac River’s Seneca Showdown, or the freestyle Chute Out, competition is a great way to improve your technique while having fun on the river. Train in competitive disciplines including freestyle, downriver, and slalom. The Commando Unit program includes these skills as well as attaining, river running, even a trip to the big-water Gauley River; but most importantly it instills confidence in your teenager’s paddling ability. Students should have a solid roll and an interest in improving whitewater and technical skills. These classes are work-out style to improve fitness and endurance. This program will show your paddler how great it feels to be in top shape on the river!
MEXICO TRIPS – Week long kayaking trips to Mexico!
We offer kayak trips for intermediate to advanced kayakers. Kayak expeditions extend through the amazing canyons and jungles.
POOL ROLLING FOR YOUTH – November – April
Winter is an ideal time to learn to roll a kayak– in an indoor swimming pool! Our in-the-boat exercises, step-by-step teaching progressions, and individual feedback will help build your skills needed for rolling in the river and the spring kayaking season. With a low student-to-instructor ratio, students will get plenty of personal attention when learning and problem-solving rolls as well as the experience and feedback from fellow students.
Open Rolling Have a boat and want some practice? Bring your own equipment and work by yourself or with other friendly Open Roll participants.
Flatwater Freestyle with Bobby Miller! Work on cartwheels, looping, stern squirts and more. Students must have their own boat and a solid roll. 2022 dates offered: December 17, January 21, February 11
Pool Rolling for 1st Timers is for total beginners or those who have not ever taken a rolling class; this class usually only needs to be taken once. Our patient and knowledgeable instructors will work with you to master getting in and out of your boat in a wet-exit and building a powerful hip-snap. First Timers will also cover T-rescues, and an intro to paddle position if time allows. Equipment is included.
Level 2+ is for students who have completed the First Timers class and feel comfortable wet exiting. In this class we break down the steps to your kayak roll, focusing on paddle and body position and getting plenty of practice with the support of an experienced instructor. Those paddlers who are having roll- issues can also benefit from the practice and guidance of an instructor in the 2+ class. Students may take this class multiple times. Each time the instructor will teach to your specific level. Equipment is included.
Pool Rolling for Youth for paddlers 9 to 17 years.
Everyone who is a competent swimmer can benefit from pool rolling practice. Beginners can learn the basics to develop a reliable roll. Intermediates can focus on off-side rolls, hand-rolls and other techniques to improve reliability in all conditions. Advanced paddlers can keep their rolls and flexibility in shape all winter long.
In Pool Rolling for First Timers, Level 2+, and Youth Rolling boats are provided. Kayaks are hardshell with an enclosed cockpit, like Jackson Antix or Z3.
CHEAT TRAINING FOR YOUTH – March – April
- 8 weekday workouts in March and April
- 4 Downriver workouts in March
- 4 trips
Location: Anglers Inn, Great Falls, Md, Sycamore Island, Cheat Canyon, and other local rivers!
It doesn’t matter if you race or not… It doesn’t matter if you are first or mid-pack… Join what has become a rite of passage for intermediate paddlers in the DC area, and you will find yourself building endurance, improving your forward stroke, and enjoying the company of friends – just what you need to get you started on next paddling season.
All participants must have a dry suit or similar thermal gear. It has been known to snow out west in April! In addition, you will need to have layers for under their dry suit, booties, and hand protection.
For Cheat Youth, Calleva is able to provide a long boat, paddle, skirt, helmet, PFD.
WEEKLONG TRIPS – Spring Break, Canada, West Virginia, Mexico
Week Long Trips are the next step to your child building a lifelong love for kayaking and the outdoors! Designed to build upon the skills learned at summer camp or After School Kayaking, we will find a week for any skill level and get your child ready for an adventure not soon forgotten. These weeks embrace the outdoors, camping and eating outside, and exploring all that the wild rivers of the Americas have to offer. Paddlers will develop skills to assess the dynamic rivers and environmental situations and learn responsibility for self as well as the group.
Calleva provides all logistical needs once the trip has started, however parents are responsible for dropping off and picking up students before and after the trip.
Kayaking Week-long trips: