What Canoeing Can Teach Us About Personal Well-Being

Some canoers dive down massive waterfalls; others commit to fast white water or spend multi-days touring and camping down along rivers, lakes, or just enjoy general weekend recreation. Floating around on a sunny Sunday afternoon offers a lot more than just a relaxing way to get out the office. Here is a list of lessons we can get from canoers to lead a life more healthily and happily.

Paddle it

With plenty of water resistance, canoeing can become a serious workout for many. Just one hour of canoeing will burn up to 400 calories depending on how hard you paddle. Canoeing not only builds strength in the arms, but it also builds strength in the core muscles, and it is also a fantastic ab and back workout without all the sweat and confines of the indoor gym. Canoeing requires all muscles working together from the legs to the shoulders, so you get a full body workout.

Keep that blood pumping

Regarding a healthy heart, canoeing is a heavy cardiovascular workout due to so much oxygen consumption. The consistent motion is a perfect way to get your heart beating while not having the strain and risk of injury as with some sports like running; decreasing fat and improving good healthy natural lean muscle mass all at the same time.

 As with having so many physical benefits, canoeing has plenty of mental health benefits. What a fantastic way to de-stress when not competing, just gliding through stunning scenery at your own speed is just such a great way to clear the head.


When exercising, the brain produces endorphins; increasing the feeling of being in the present and elevating mood, thus making you happy. Being on the water will put your mind in what’s known as a flow state or ‘the zone’. Similarly to the effect of meditation; as you concentrate and read the water and surroundings, you will become completely engaged with what is going on and be put in the present moment. This is incredibly healthy, especially if you have a busy, hectic working life.


Over 80% of our vitamin D consumption comes from the sun itself; this means the more time spent outdoors, the more of that beautiful sunshine vitamin we are going to get. Canoeing is a fantastic way to clock up a sensible amount of sun exposure, just remember to wear sun cream to block out the suns UV and UVA rays.


One of the biggest players in happiness and good health. Achieving goals by, say, paddling a little further than last time or increasing a white water grade is the perfect way to boost confidence and create a positive self-image. Canoeing can facilitate a greater social network, a better sense of being and self which all grows self-satisfaction; making you a happier, more confident you. Canoeing can even boost brain power!

Together, increased oxygen intake, calm mindfulness and a little bit of strategy, for instance, orientation and navigation, you can create an overall increase in brain functionality.

So, forget about the treadmills and weight benches, grab a paddle and get out there. Check out the range of canoes for sale on our website.

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