Canoeing is the practice of propelling a canoe with a paddle for the purpose of recreation, transportation or competetive sport. It is among the first of all human inventions and as an activity it is arguably one of the simplest, enjoyable and inexpensive activities of modern times. People of all ages go canoeing it has in increased inpopularity rapidly in recent times. It is a first class route to get in touch with nature and wildlife. Kayaking, the most popular form of canoeing, is performed sitting down in the canoe using a paddle with a blade at each end, whereas open canoeing involves kneeling or sitting, using a paddle with one blade. Canoes are manufactured from various materials, including aluminium, cedar strips, kevlar and fiber glass. Each material has its own strengths and weaknesses and all have their associated costs. The best way to start canoeing is by joing your local club, they will have all the equipment you will need including the boats themselves, buoyancy aids and paddles. Costs of hire vary, but $60 per session for the lot is a reasonable price to pay. Suitable clothing is essential, including water shoes, life jackets, plus bottled drinking water and sunscreen. You should be a reasonably proficient swimmer, as it is inevitable that you will find yourself in the water sooner or later. You should also have reasonable levels of strength and fitness. Having said that, paddling is an excellent way of increasing fitness levels, improving all round core stability, and losing weight. A week spent on a kayaking holiday can significantly increase fitness and fat burn. Kayaking is is ideally suited for strengthing and building up muscles in the legs, abdomen, back and chest. The calorie burn factor is good too, it could be anything from 200 calories per hour if paddling sedately, to over 1000 calories per hour if paddling competetively. Canoeing is good for you both mentally and physically, it improves self esteem and it is a an excellent way to socialise. It's a top way to exercise while enjoying yourself, and it is an inexpensive way of getting yourself afloat. Great for youngsters, seniors and families alike.