Grade 2 Certificate Kayak Course Christchurch

4 Days $979

Get your grade 2 certificate.

If you’re thinking of competing in the Kathmandu Coast to Coast, or you’d simply like to learn to kayak, then our highly popular Grade 2 Certificate Kayak Course will help you get started. Learn all the essential skills and achieve your goals.

Our Christchurch based four-day program provides you with more river time, and more experience paddling real whitewater rapids than any place we know. We will develop your correct technique and help encourage maximum river confidence. Experience our innovative progression that really works and that people have been raving about in reviews.

Learning to roll back up is included as part of your time with us. This skill will help you feel more comfortable with the river, and allow you to become a safer paddler. Boat & equipment hire is also included free of charge, so you don’t even need to have your own gear yet.

Because getting to Christchurch for four days is so easy, people come to paddle with us from all over New Zealand, Australia, and beyond. We regularly work with paddlers from Auckland, Wellington, Nelson, West Coast, Dunedin, Sydney, Brisbane, London, and more!

  • No expereince required. Complete beginners welcome.
  • FREE kayak and gear hire included.
  • Grade 2 Kayak Certificate NZ assessment included.
  • Learn in a small group size of just 4 paddlers per coach.
  • Learn how to roll back up.
  • BBQ dinner provided on nights away.
  • Kathmandu Coast to Coast Race approved.
  • Receive professional coaching from an NZOIA qualified instructor.
  • Learn over four consecutive days so you reach a higher skill level.
  • Fully safety audited & registered with AdventureMark.
  • Learn more about us…

Skills You’ll Learn

  • How to roll up in moving water.
  • How to set up equipment.
  • All necessary strokes & draws.
  • How to read the river and rapids.
  • How to break in & out of eddys.
  • How to ferry glide across the flow.
  • How to paddle whitewater rapids.
  • How to identify river hazards.
  • How to self-rescue.
  • River safety & hypothermia.
  • Plus much more!


  • You must be able to swim.
  • You need to be of good health & fitness.
  • You need to be between 16-65 years old.
  • You need to be between 50-110kg.


“I would highly recommend this”

Great team! Sam and his instructional team convey the lessons in a practical and easy to process manner. Overall this was a great course and I would highly recommend this to anyone interested.

Matthew James (Christchurch) / Nov 11, 2018

“Great program and confidence building opportunity”

Great program and confidence building opportunity for me. Heaps more rolling focus than the course I did with another outfit a few years ago, which was a great thing. I would recommend buying the semi-dry or full-dry paddle jacket Canterbury Kayaking sells to be more comfortable in the cold water and make the most of things.

Chris Middlemiss (Christchurch) / Oct 28, 2018

“I was amazed at how much I had learned”

Each of the four days was well structured, building on the skills learned from the previous day. Sam and Phil’s personalities complemented well with the way they approached their teaching. I always felt safe with them and they almost seemed to have eyes at the back of their heads because they always seemed to be aware of what everyone was doing. I started the course as an absolute newbie, having never even been in a kayak prior to the course. By the end of day four I was amazed at how much I had learned and have already joined the local whitewater club so that I can enjoy the water more and to continue to build on the skills learned during the course. Well done Sam and Phil for what was a fabulous four days of kayaking.

John Chong (Christchurch) / Oct 14, 2018

“I enjoyed every second”

Really well organised, very professional and extremely proficient instructors. I enjoyed every second, and would thoroughly recommend this to anyone thinking about doing Coast to Coast or wanting to increase their skills and knowledge on the river. The gradual progression made it all seem very natural and made me feel very comfortable in the water. Thanks Phil and Sam – absolute legends.

Amy Cunningham (Auckland) / Sep 23, 2018

“I developed my skills a lot further than I expected”

I had a great time, developed my skills a lot further than I expected. This has helped me with my preparation for the Coast to Coast – Cheers Sam & Phil.

Steve Brown (Oxford) / Sep 16, 2018

“I went from zero, to rolling my kayak in just 3 days”

Really enjoyed the course. I can’t believe I went from zero, to rolling my kayak in just 3 days. Cheers guys!

Chris Kimber (Christchurch) / Sep 9, 2018

“I couldn’t imagine doing Coast to Coast without this”

An amazing course. It improved my ability and changed my perception of whitewater paddling. I couldn’t imagine doing Coast to Coast without this.

Kelly Leonard (Nelson) / Apr 29, 2018

“Coaches skill level was outstanding”

Extremely professional course. I felt very safe and informed with every aspect. Both coaches skill level and understanding was outstanding. Thanks Sam & Rhys.

Scott Cochrane (Prebbleton) / Apr 22, 2018

” An amazing time, I loved it!”

Sam and his team were great at giving us the skills and confidence required to tackle the challenges of the weekend. They were great at pushing us just enough to learn, while their expertise made me feel like I was always safe – even when things didn’t quite go to plan. Thanks for an amazing time, I loved it!

Emma Jessop (Christchurch) / Apr 15, 2018

“This course is brilliant”

I still can’t believe the transformation we all went through over 4 days! This course is brilliant. I’m already scheming when I can get in a boat next! Thanks Coach Sam & Rhys!!!

Tarsh Turner (Christchurch) / Apr 8, 2018

“The perfect length of time to gain skills and confidence”

Awesome intro to whitewater kayaking. Four days was the perfect length of time to gain skills and confidence and apply this to the river. Coach Sam was very motivating and was able to break down key skills step by step, and continue coaching these skills day by day. It was great learning to roll, which gave me confidence to tackle the river. It was super enjoyable camping away for two nights and being close to the river. I couldn’t recommend this course enough for someone looking to complete their grade 2 cert.

Shaun Harrington (Christchurch) / Mar 4, 2018

“The best outdoor skills course I have participated in”

This has been the best outdoor skills course I have participated in. The equipment, theory, and coach professionalism all score 10/10 for me. I had a great time.

Ian Stewart (Queensland, Australia) / Feb 19, 2018

“Thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience”

The program flowed and progressed nice and smoothly despite adverse weather conditions. Coach Phil focused on everybody’s needs individually. Thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience and would recommend Canterbury Kayaking to anybody interested in paddling.

Bryson Lee (New South Wales, Australia) / Jan 14, 2018

“Had an absolute blast”

I had an absolute blast. Best 4 days of Coast to Coast preparation I have done.

Chris Ball (New South Wales, Australia) / Nov 26, 2017

“I loved this course”

Coach Sam has a super personality and has a way to inspire confidence in you. I loved the four days and highly recommend it to anyone looking to do their Grade 2 or to get some skills in their boat.

Steve Provis (West Coast) / Nov 12, 2017

“Well worth it”

I enjoyed it a lot. Camping is such a great way to immerse yourself in paddling. Coach Sam was a great teacher and certainly had a lot to offer, as well as a good yarn afterwards. Such an awesome and intense 4 days, but well worth it!

Ben Parsons (Nelson) / Nov 12, 2017

“A fantastic experience”

The Canterbury Kayaking Grade 2 course was a fantastic experience. Sam’s expertise was amazing coupled with his passion to make us push ourselves for ongoing improvement. It was very challenging at times and by all means not easy but Sam made it all feel safe. The detailed website and information supplied made the trip from out of town easy. I’ve booked more training with Canterbury Kayaking in the future and would not hesitate to recommend them.

Simon Collett (Nelson) / Nov 5, 2017

“A great introduction to kayaking”

I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Sam & Phil. The 4 day program was a great introduction to kayaking and while it was challenging, I enjoyed learning a new skill set and further improving my paddling. I also felt very safe under the their guidance.

Kirsty Sclater (United Kingdom) / Oct 15, 2017

“Challenging and exciting”

I was a really easy process to book on. The lessons progressed in a way that was tailored to the skills in the group so always challenging and exciting. Coaches Sam & Phil were encouraging and approachable. I will definitely be recommending this to friends interested in learning to paddle.

Karl Bowen (Christchurch) / Sep 7, 2017

“Completely exceeded my expectations”

I think I went into this fairly “green”. I had already purchased a multisport boat based on others advice and had figured that the Grade 2 Certificate was just another “box I had to tick” in order to do the Coast to Coast Race. Canterbury Kayaking has completely exceeded my expectations and rather than just “ticking a box” I have come away with a new found passion. Sam and his team, Rata and Phil, have now set me off in the right direction and I feel that I will be a more skilled and safer kayaker because of it! Thanks so much guys love your work !!!

Cameron Smith (Christchurch) / Sep 3, 2017

“Good value for money”

Did this about 4 month’s out from the Coast to Coast 2017. Found it to be very well structured, telling you just what you need to know at the right time so that you’re not jumping ahead, but concentrate on the lesson at hand. This was also my first intro to white water and thoroughly enjoyed it. Largely because of the steady increase in skills and theory over the 4 days, with the knowledge that a coach is just there for a rescue if needed. The lake sessions were good to get the trust dialled in. I’d done some cost comparisons for the course & gear purchased and can recommend good value for money. Also added on the multisport course immediately after this four days which was a great way to do it.

Andy Clare (Dunedin) / Feb 18, 2017

“Awesome course”

Thanks so much for the awesome course – without it I would definitely have struggled my way through the kayak leg of the coast to coast. I improved my technique, learnt to roll and gained enough skills and confidence to be looking forward to the river section rather than worrying about it! Thanks again.

Andrew Cantwell / Feb 17, 2016

“The enthusiasm is infectious”

It’s been so lovely to be taught by someone with bundles of passion for their sport, who puts in huge amounts of time and effort in encouraging every paddler. With Canterbury Kayaking’s help I was really looking forward to the paddle on race day, instead of being nervous! I’m super grateful for all the kit and gear advice too. Everything came together on the day, and despite rough weather I had no swims! I could even hear Sam’s voice in my head down the river calling out ‘edge’, ‘rudder’! Thanks Sam…had a fantastic time. Just a warning to everyone though, the enthusiasm is infectious…you’ll find yourself loving kayaking too!!

Lucie Stanley / Feb 16, 2016