I enjoy being outdoors and hope to inspire others to get out and experience some of South Australia's great outdoor activities.
Published February 8th 2014
Want fitness AND weekends on the water? Then get out of the gym and get kayaking. It strengthens your core as much as pilates - and it's a thousand times more fun.
If you don't own a kayak, or you can't face hauling that thing onto your car, don't let that stop you. Plan B Fitness runs kayak fitness sessions three times a week on the pristine waters off Seacliff Beach. All you need to do is book a place and your bright yellow boat will be waiting for you by the shore, along with PFD and paddle. At $25 a session (or a 10 pack for $200) it's a bargain.
The sessions are suitable for people of ranging abilities as the activities can be varied according to skill and fitness levels. For those who've never paddled before, rest assured you'll be in a stable double kayak first time out and given proper instruction on the correct technique before you hit the water.
Bec Hickson is the friendly face behind Plan B, which specialises in personal and group training with a focus on outdoor fitness. Her b outdoors bootcamp has a cult following, and there's a regular cohort (me included) who can't start the weekend without their Plan B kayak fix. Bec has many years kayaking experience and top qualifications to match. She's inspired and coached her clients to accomplish extraordinary things, and aside from that she's encouraging if you're just starting out and always really good fun.
So what can you get out of it? Well, as I have learned, kayaking is not just a workout for your arms. In fact the majority of your power comes from your core. In order to engage these muscles you need to be using proper technique, and Bec's tailored instruction is great to get you going. The sessions last for an hour on the water and include a mix of warm-up time, a focus on technique, sprint and stop drills, plus intervals and races. And if there happens to be a bit of swell on, nothing makes you work harder than the thrill of catching runners on the way back to shore.
The Plan B sessions are geared towards fitness rather than leisure and are designed to give you a good workout in great surroundings. Don't be surprised, however, if you happen upon a pod of dolphins, or even a friendly seal. And at every session you're guaranteed some of Adelaide's best scenery, the quiet dip of your paddle, and above all a great bunch of people.
Plan B Fitness runs kayak sessions year-round (weather permitting) at 7am Saturdays, 6.15pm Tuesdays (during daylight savings), and 6am Thursdays. They launch at the beach near the Seacliff boat ramp. Numbers are limited and bookings are essential. Places tend to fill up fast during summer, so contact Bec to secure your spot and give this great sport a try.