Hawaiian Canoe Racing Preseason Begins


Photo: OHCRA

You’ve tried surfing, you’ve tried running, you’ve even tried the sweat dripping practice of hot bikram yoga. How about giving Hawaii’s state sport a shot?

The 2013 Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association pre-season is now underway, with the sprint regatta regular season set to launch in June.

No prior experience is necessary, as OHCRA welcomes all who are interested in giving paddling a try.

There are a variety of divisions ranging from novice to senior and your skill level will determine your race placement.

Canoe club age requirements are range from age 8 all the way up to 80.

Membership dues and fees vary between canoe clubs; contact the coach or director of a specific club to find out about that club’s seasonal membership fees.

If you are a bit iffy about committing, most clubs let newcomers try a few practices out to get a feel for the sport.

Hawaiian outrigger canoeing is a way to connect with new people, with the open ocean and tests your competitive nature.

“Canoe paddling is one of the things that our ancestors did, and a lot of people look at it as something they can do that is truly Hawaiian,” says Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association president Luana Froiseth.

During races, canoes are manned by six paddlers at a time, each with a specific duty. Practices are designed for the novice paddler to understand the fundamentals of paddle form and stroke cadence.

To find a canoe club nearest you visit OHCRA.com or HCRApaddler.com if you’re looking to join a club on one of the neighbor islands.


A professional writer for 10 years, Chris Fleck has covered a variety topics from history and sports to food and science. He currently is an adjunct professor at Hawaii Pacific University, teaching in both the communication and journalism departments. He is an avid runner and hiker and has embraced living in Hawaii since 2004.

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