Canoeing is the most popular and fastest growing watersport for the seventh year running. A recent independent survey of adult participation has revealed that canoeing is the most popular and fastest growing watersport for the seventh year running. 

The survey which is carried out annually and first conducted in 2002, was commissioned on behalf of: 

  • the Royal Yachting Association,
  • the British Marine Federation,
  • the Maritime and Coastguard Association and
  • the Royal National Lifeboat Institute.

Of the twelve boating activities measured, canoeing has seen the biggest increase in participation with the survey demonstrating that 1,262,478 people over the age of 16 years participate at least once a week in canoe and kayaking.

These positive results back up fresh results released in December, from Sport England's Ipsos Mori Active People Survey (3), which demonstrated an increase in participation of 45% between October 2008 and October 2009.

The survey showed that 62,900 adults take part in 30 minutes of moderate intensity canoeing at least once a week. Canoeing is one of four sports out of a total of thirty three (with Sport England targets) which has seen a dramatic increase in participation, the other sports are athletics, tennis and cycling.

Paul Owen, Chief Executive of the British Canoe Union comments - 'The survey confirms what we already know, that canoeing is a fantastic activity with numerous benefits and is enjoyed by so many, which is why it continues to be such a popular and rapidly growing sport and recreation. 'It is anticipated that more people will be introduced to canoeing through our national "Go Paddling" initiative that runs throughout the spring and summer.'