ACA Kayak & Canoe Instructor Training
Levels 3 and 4

Our Kayak Instructor Training Course is designed to prepare participants with the professional skills needed to teach whitewater kayaking. NOC’s training will certify up to Level 4 ACA Kayak Instructor. 

Participants will work on refining both hard and soft skills including teaching methodologya focus on student learning styles, group management, as well as rescue prevention and hands-on rescue.  

Prior to signing up for this coursepaddlers should consider the following prerequisites: 

  • Participants must be 18 years of age or older. 
  • Can confidently paddle Class III-IV whitewater 
  • Ability to self-rescue  
  • Ability to help with group rescues in Class III water 

Certification in these courses are based on both paddling and teaching skills and is not guaranteed at any level. These courses are only for those with intermediate to advanced paddling skills. 

Participants must be over the age of 18. 

Course Length:
5 Days


Daily Lunch*

*Discounts available at NOC lodging and restaurants

Included in Course: 

  • All necessary specialty whitewater equipment 
  • Lunch & In-Course Transportation 
  • NOC’s highly trained, ACA certified instruction 

Course In Action

Course Dates

ACA Level 3 Kayak Instructor Training Oct 5th - 9th Bryson City, NC $800 Book Now
ACA Level 4 Kayak Instructor Training Oct 5th - 9th Bryson City, NC $800 Book Now
ACA Level 3/4 Kayak Instructor Update Oct 17th - 18th Bryson City, NC $400 Book Now

Course Outline

Course Topics:

• River management skills
• Rescue prevention
• Hands-on rescue—skills both in and out of the boat

During the course, students will have the unique chance to instruct beginner students for two days while being given instant tips and feedback from an experience mentor instructor. This is incredibly valuable as it gives hands-on experience and understanding of paddling progressions needed for fun and success on the water.

Over the course of the week, students will have an opportunity to paddle on Class III-IV rapids (or rapids to fit their skills). Participants need to be able to confidently paddle Class III-IV whitewater, with the ability to self-rescue and help with group rescues in Class III water. Participants must be over the age of 18.

Course Itinerary:

Day 1: Orientation; Instructor Development Workshop - Beginner teaching progressions

Day 2: Paddling Workshop - Work on personal hard skills

Day 3: Rolling Workshop - Rolling progressions with real beginner students

Day 4: Teaching Workshop - Demonstrate ACA teaching methods and progressions

Day 5: River Rescue Workshop - Boat bases, rescue vest, wading and unpinning; Final Evaluation and certification


Packing List

NOC provides the primary gear needed for each course, including boats, paddles, PFDs, helmets, dry tops and bottoms.
Participants will need to provide individual gear outlined below.

Necessary items (for all classes)

  • Shorts or Swimwear
  • Water shoes or old sneakers
  • Synthetic T-shirts
  • Sunscreen/Lip balm
  • Towel and Change of clothes
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Clothing and personal items
  • Rain gear
  • Band-Aids/Tape

Optional items

  • Synthetic long underwear
  • Light fleece hoodie/pullover
  • Nose clips
  • Sunglasses and eyeglass strap
  • Hat or visor
  • Ear plugs

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