The aim of this website is to create a transparent and clear overview of I.S.K.G.A Sea Kayak Guides, Module providers and observers.

Profile pages:

The profile pages represent the guides historical paddling/expedition career/experience, as supplied to the web site co-ordinator of I.S.K.G.A – by the guide. I.S.K.G.A accepts no responsibility for any inaccuracies in the information held within the guides profile page.

Registered Guides:

If the title beneath the guides profile picture indicates that he/she is an I.S.K.G.A Registered/affiliated Guide, it means that he/she is using the website for advertising purposes only. That they have registered themselves with the I.S.K.G.A but they have not been trained, approved or observed by any individual within I.S.K.G.A in any way. The information within Registered/affiliated Guides profiles has not been validated by any individual within I.S.K.G.A and is portrayed only for the purpose of supporting the profile of the individual and to that end, the supporting certification that has been supplied by that person, may be included as an attachment in the right hand column of his/her qualifications table.  We encourage registered/affiliated guides to undertake a personal action plan in undertaking and pursuing through the ISKGA Modules and Training Scheme. This shows their interest and commitment to be a more up to date and professional commercial guide.

The cost to register with ISKGA is £50.00 per year

I.S.K.G.A Coastal Guide:

If the title below the guides profile picture indicates that he/she is an I.S.K.G.A Coastal Guide – it means that he/she has completed all of the generic I.S.K.G.A coastal modules and has been recommended by his/her trainer to go forward for an ‘Observation’. He/she has then gone forward for an ‘Observation’ as approved by I.S.K.G.A and has been ‘Observed’ by two I.S.K.G.A Observers and was deemed at the time of his/her observation to be able to complete the I.S.K.G.A Coastal Guide syllabus at a satisfactory level.

Alternatively, due to previous experience or awards from various organisations, the Coastal Guide may have been approved at the ‘Coastal Guide’ Level by the technical committee of I.S.K.G.A

I.S.K.G.A Coastal Guides need to hold the appropriate level of Sea Kayak Proficiency/leadership level from their home nations National Governing Body (NGB), preferably before they attend a coastal guide training. This qualification may be included during a guide training program however. A provisional (P) status will be applied to any guides profile page until they have achieved this personal performance/leadership award.

A ‘Provisional’ status will also be applied if a guide, when they pass through the observation process shows they are deficient in commercial or Coastal environment expeditions. This Status indicated by a (P) will be removed when evidence of a log book showing 42 expedition days is provided or after a probationary period of 18 months of commercial guiding has been completed.

After this probationary time period of 18 months has occurred the ISKGA Coastal/Advanced guide can start to mentor others, up to their guide level, passing on their experiences. Only two trainees can be mentored at any one time and these trainee guides will need to be registered on the ISKGA system.

After the successful completion of four candidates at ‘Observation’ Level’ the title ‘Module Provider’ will be added to the guides profile.

I.S.K.G.A Advanced Guide:

If the title below the guides profile picture indicates that he/she is an I.S.K.G.A Advanced Guide – it means that he/she has completed all of the generic I.S.K.G.A Advanced modules and has been recommended by his/her trainer to go forward for an ‘Observation’. He/she has then gone forward for an ‘Observation’ as approved by  I.S.K.G.A and has been ‘Observed’ by an I.S.K.G.A Observer and was deemed at the time of his/her observation to be able to complete the I.S.K.G.A Advanced Guide syllabus at a satisfactory level.

Alternatively, due to previous experience or awards from various organisations, the Advanced Guide may have been approved at the ‘Advanced Guide’ Level by the technical committee of I.S.K.G.A

I.S.K.G.A Advanced Guides need to hold the appropriate level of Sea Kayak Proficiency/leadership level from their home nations National Governing Body (NGB), preferably before they attend an advanced guide training. This qualification may be included during a guide training program however. A provisional (P) status will be applied to any guides profile page until they have achieved this personal performance/leadership award.

A ‘Provisional’ status will also be applied if a guide, when they pass through the observation process shows they are deficient in commercial or Advanced environment expeditions. This Status indicated by a (P) can be removed when evidence of a log book shows 42 expedition days is provided or after a probationary period of 18 months of commercial guiding has been completed.

After this probationary time period of 18 months has occurred the ISKGA Coastal/Advanced guide can start to mentor others, up to their guide level, passing on their experiences. Only two trainees can be mentored at any one time and these trainee guides will need to be registered on the ISKGA system.

After the successful completion of four candidates at ‘Observation’ Level’ the title ‘Module Provider’ will be added to the guides profile.

I.S.K.G.A National Training Centres:

Each member nation will have a National Training Centre (NTC).

NTC’s can deliver the full modular guide training program and is responsible for co-ordinating their countries training & observations. They also co-ordinate their countries guides, trainee guides and expedition centres.

NTC’s need to employ an ISKGA Guide who also possesses their ‘Home Nation’s’ NGB awards in coaching, assessment, personal performance and leadership at the level to which they are running guide training programs.  NTC’s must also employ a Guide who is qualified in the Marine/wilderness First Aid trainer/assessor award or is working towards this program.

The ISKGA ‘Method of Instruction’ module is not sufficient as a stand alone award to train other commercial guides. If the National Training centre does not fall under a National Governing Body, it should turn towards the British Canoeing framework of Coaching awards.

ISKGA Expedition Centres

ISKGA Expedition Centres run expeditions that have met with the ISKGA  ‘Approved Expedition’ standards and to that end need to employ an ISKGA Guide who is qualified at the appropriate level.

ISKGA Expedition Centres can also run the following modules: Expedition Skills, Sea Survival, Fundamentals 1, 2 & 3.

APL Process

The Approved Prior Learning status can be applied for as ISKGA recognises skill levels and experience that exists within the Sea Kayaking community, and is happy to APL guides across and into the ISKGA framework. However for a guide to become a full module provider they must have attended, all of the generic modules or show sufficient evidence and have experience of delivering the generic subjects to a high standard, if this is not evident, the APL’d guide must attend the ISKGA Trainers course to fully identify with the system requirements, until this has been completed a provisional (P) status shall be applied.

ISKGA is not competing with other organisations such as National Governing Bodies, our aims and aspirations are to develop extremely proficient guides who operate in wilderness/remote environments, to that end, if you are applying to join ISKGA to avoid your home nations sea kayaking related awards, you will be asked to complete these qualifications prior to the provisional status being removed from your profile

I.S.K.G.A Observer:

The I.S.K.G.A Observer is an appointed position only and he/she has been appointed by the I.S.K.G.A technical team. He/she has an extensive knowledge of sea kayak guiding, coaching and understands the syllabus intimately. He/she will understand the methods by which the observation process should be conducted and be fully able to assume control of the group at any time.

The Observer will hold the required NGB levels of coaching/assessing qualifications as well as having a high level of practical first aid experience and award

The ‘Observation’ Process is an intensive and thorough process, the candidate wishing to go forwards for an Observation must first of all speak with his/her trainer and gain a ‘Trainers Recommendation’, the trainer will then apply on behalf of the candidate for the Observation process to begin.

Alternatively the trainee, if having worked through his/her workbook utilising a series of trainers, can apply directly to ISKGA for an approval to go forward for Observation, to do this the work book must be sent through to ISKGA HQ along with the trainees Log book where a decision will then be made by the ISKGA Technical committee or chairman to approve that the Observation can take place.

Once these requirements have been completed, the trainee candidate will then be provided with dates for the next available Observation and shall receive the Observation diagnostic test paper.

The Observation is conducted over a three days (including two night paddling periods), is overseen by a Course director and is conducted by two ISKGA Observers, working independently of each other.

At the end of the three days, the commercial clients who have volunteered to assist on the Observation will complete a questionnaire which is aimed at delivering a ‘Client’s perspective’ on the candidates performance, the Observers shall then meet with the Course director and the results shall be determined between the Observers notes and the clients feedback, this process shall be under the guidance of the course director.

I.S.K.G.A Affiliated Centers:

An I.S.K.G.A Registered centre, means that the business advertising on that web page is using the website for advertising purposes only. That they have registered themselves with the I.S.K.G.A but that business has not been trained, approved or observed by any individual within I.S.K.G.A – in any way. The information within Registered Centre pages, has not been validated by any individual within I.S.K.G.A and is portrayed only for the purpose of supporting the profile of the business and to that end, the supporting certification that has been supplied by that business. The products which are being run through that business have not been approved or validated by any other member of I.S.K.G.A or by its technical committee. The cost to register your centre with ISKGA is £200.00 (annual fee).

I.S.K.G.A Technical Advisors & National Trainers:

I.S.K.G.A Technical Advisors and National Trainers have been selected for their specialist knowledge and practical experience in the below listed areas of expertise.

Technical advisors, offer advise and guidance to the I.S.K.G.A technical team and are a valuable resource for other I.S.K.G.A members to reference to.

National Trainers will have other, professional supporting qualifications, in the areas of Sea Kayak Coaching, First Aid, Sea Survival and shall be fully familiar with the ISKGA Guide program as well as having commercial guide experience.

They offer guidance in the following areas:

First Aid (Paul Cahill, Anna Shekdar, Roderick Dunn)

Sea Safety (Dave Whiddon)

Sea Survival (Dave Whiddon)

Expedition Skills (Hefin Jones, Jim Bonney)

Hostile Environments (Hefin Jones)

Leadership (Nick Arding, Jim Bonney)

Environmental Module (Dr Lou Luddington)

Paddling in Ice (Martin Rickard)

Winter Paddling & survival skills (Matt Larsen Clifford)

 

Safety Recommendations for the construction of Sea Kayaks

I.S.K.G.A recommends that all sea kayaks used by ISKGA Sea Kayak Guides are manufactured in accordance with the home nations manufacturing laws and that they meet all health and safety criteria as applicable to the nation in which they are operating, that these sea kayaks are in good condition and suitable for the client base they are working for.

Further recommendations to manufacturers are that, at the point of sale, a written and verbal recommendation is made to the purchaser that they seek professional tuition from a recognised and qualified instructor before use.

That the purchaser registers their kayak with the coast guard or appropriate authority.

Outfitting:

The sea kayak should be fitted with Toggles which extend beyond the bow and stern of the sea kayak and that these toggles are free of any loops through which fingers can become trapped and injured.

That the sea kayak has water tight bulkheads and hatch covers to prevent flooding during a capsize or rescue, if the sea kayak is not fitted with hatches or bulkheads, that the sea kayak has adequate buoyancy to prevent flooding and that this buoyancy is fitted well enough that it does not float away from the sea kayak during a capsize and rescue, it is also recommended that sea socks are used in this instance to prevent water flooding beyond the cockpit position.

The sea kayak should be designed where it is able to counter the effects of wind, this may be through appropriate hull design, the fitting of a mechanical or permanent skeg or a rudder system.

The sea kayak should be manufactured where all through deck fittings are recessed and that the sea kayak has suitable deck lines both fore and aft of the cockpit position, the sea kayak should also have deck elastics to store essential safety items beneath, such as spare paddles and bilge pumps.

It is a strong recommendation that all sea kayaks are fitted with a water proof storage compartment where other safety items can be safely stored and accessed whilst afloat, with enough volume to carry items such as distress & signal flares, emergency food, first aid equipment, repair equipment, emergency hatch covers, emergency shelters, water, VHF radios and other signalling devices such as PLB’s and EPIRBS.