Amanda Hagen helps Hana Nguyen with her kayak.

Sports and lifesaving take over Prince Rupert pool

North Coast youngsters had the chance to hone their kayaking skills within the safe confines of the Earl Mah Aquatic Centre.

North Coast youngsters had the chance to hone their kayaking skills within the safe confines of the Earl Mah Aquatic Centre the past several weeks.

Amanda Hagen and Nathan Ramin, two ex-assistant coaches with the Prince Rupert Rapids swim club and current lifeguards, ran the program designed to teach on-the-water safety skills.

“[We’ve been doing] lots of education about PFDs (personal flotation devices), life jackets; when they work, how to use them, how to fit them properly,” said Hagen.

The program is part of National Drowning Prevention Week, held from 1 to 3 p.m. last Monday to Friday, and while the initial turnout didn’t meet any lofty expectations, once the kayaks were brought out Hagen and Ramin had to turn kids away at closing time, the boats were so popular.

“We started doing that and then everybody took a liking to the boats,” said Ramin.

“Not everybody gets to do it, I mean I’ve only been out kayaking once or twice,” added Hagen.

The duo also operate the “Swim to Survive” challenge where participants are given a disorienting rollover in a boat, asked to tread water for a minute, swim back and forth and if they successfully complete the challenge they were given a certificate.

During this, the final week of the pool’s availability before it’s shut down until Sept. 21, Ramin and Hagen will be operating Sports Week, a chance for kids to play water polo, underwater hockey, volleyball, and boogie board surfing.

“It’s free, every day from Monday to Friday this week,” said Hagen.

Adults can also get a kick out of kayaking in the pool with Thursday night sessions from 8:30 to 10 p.m. They can choose to bring their own, rent one for a small fee, or rent one at a discounted price with an aquatics centre membership.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tlaoquiaht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Necropsy for Port Edward wolf is inconclusive

Samples sent for forensic analysis; wolf sightings continue

Seafest parade sails on June 27

Tides are turning during COVID-19 for Prince Rupert parade

Prince Rupert school district fires superintendent

Dr. Irene LaPierre removed from position immediately.

B.C. government eyes antlerless moose harvest increase in bid to save caribou

Antlerless moose hunts reduce predation for threatened mountain caribou, says ministry

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

Seniors to receive up to $500 in promised COVID-19 emergency aid in early July

The Liberal government first promised the extra help in mid-May, but had to create a new system to deliver the aid

VIDEO: Revelstoke bear wanders into Animal House pet store

Staff got ready to chase it out with a broom

New study is first full list of species that only exist in Canada

Almost 40 per cent of them are critically imperilled or imperilled and eight are already extinct

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Federal aid for care home systems needed ahead of second wave, advocates say

Ontario Long Term Care Association calling for more action

Tlaoquiaht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Horgan calls for national anti-racism program; will pitch idea to PM, premiers

Premier John Horgan said he’s horrified by the death of George Floyd in the United States

Most Read