Stirling and Falkirk Canoe Club
Based in central Scotland. Our aim is to cater for all types of paddlesports, for all ages and abilities. Please feel free to browse the website and contact us for more information.
Beginners and lessons
The club does not run specific sessions for beginners, but we do have 2 sessions per week which are open to all, from beginners to experts, and at which the coaches are available to help with whatever is needed. The first of these sessions takes place on the Westwood Canal in Polamont at the Falkirk Community Wave's Action Outdoors and Indoor centre. The second takes place at the Bannacoma High School swimming pool. Both of these sessions require booking, please see the individual sections below, and if you would like specific supervision it is best to let the organiser know when booking.
Facebook and website
Facebook is our front office board, as is the club website. We try to keep details of trips, training, events and so on up to date on the website, but sometimes last minute things don't make it, and occasionally it becomes out of date when we are all too busy paddling! In general, everything happens on Facebook, so it's worth signing up if you want to get involved and the website is accessible at www.sfcc.info.
Canoe or kayak?
For those who are unsure, a canoe is generally an open boat in which you sit or kneel and use a single-bladed paddle (Indian style). Kayaks are decked boats in which you sit and use a two-bladed paddle (Eskimo style).
The club has a wide range of boats including touring kayaks, sea kayaks, white water kayaks and open canoes. We also have fleets of slalom competition kayaks and polo kayaks. All club sessions (with the exception of pool sessions for space reasons) support canoes and kayaks, and equipment can be provided for use. Members can also borrow club equipment for their own use, with a small charge for some items (notably sea kayaks, which cost £5 per day). This fee is waived if you are participating in a club event. Competition Stirling & Falkirk Canoe Club has a strong presence in canoe polo and canoe slalom, and we run our own 3/4 slalom division in September each year. The club has equipment for both disciplines, and many members compete in one (or both) of these events. The club's sessions cater for all levels, from beginners to British champions, and for all ages!
River, Lake and Sea Trips
The club has a very busy schedule of activities during the spring/summer/fall months with many trips and training courses.
training courses. These aim to cater for all members, perhaps with the exception of our experts who tend to paddle in groups of like-minded paddlers when not involved in club activities. There is always an 'easy river trip' each month, aimed at progressing paddlers from the canal or lochs to moving water, and we try to organise a number of flat water trips on lochs or canals throughout the year too, to help the progression of the pool outside. We do occasionally organise trips to the coastal estuaries, but we don't currently have any qualified sea coaches, so these are often 'peer paddles' where like-minded members get together.
We have some very experienced paddlers who do not have qualifications, so often these trips are organised to a high standard, but we are not able to approve them as club trips. Every Sunday, when there is no club trip, groups of paddlers meet in Sainsbury's car park in Stirling at 9am, where they discuss plans for the day and head out on a suitable river for a day trip. The location and difficulty will depend on the participants and, again, these are not formally organised club trips because we do not provide training cover, but many of the club's coaches take part in these trips, so they are often organised to the same standards as a formal club trip. Trips and training are organised through the forum, so if you are interested in taking part in these activities, get a connection to the forum.
Sometimes we get qualified coaches who want to join us or find out more about us. We love to hear from you! We have around 20 coaches from level 1 to Level 4 within the club, across multiple disciplines, but with all the activities we try and host in the season, more are always welcome. We also offer occasional training for coaches when we have enough interest. In recent years the club has run 2 UKCC Level 1 courses, a UKCC Level 2 course, various 3, 4, FSRT, WWSR courses and various assessments. If you would like to get involved in coaching, either as a new or existing coach, contact Steve Malik.
Or come to a pool, canal or other club session and introduce yourself.
Union Canal, Polmont
Easter to about mid-September, Monday evenings from 6-9pm is our private moment at Action Indoors and Outdoors on the Union Canal in Polamont.
This is an open session and anyone can come, from beginners to experts, and equipment can be provided. We ask that you book directly via the forum (there is a post for each week in the "Coaching & Club Trips" section) so that we can ensure we have enough coaches and equipment; please book even if you have your own equipment.
There are canoes, kayaks, paddles and safety equipment available and the centre has hot showers and changing facilities; we even provide tea, coffee and hot chocolate! Sessions cost £5 per person, all you need to bring is a set of clothes that you don't mind getting wet and muddy (often old trainers, tracksuit bottoms, a t-shirt and sweatshirt), and a clean set to take home! The centre is located in the grounds of the Central Retail Park, Grahams Rd, Falkirk FK1 1LW, opposite the prison. There is a pool from 6-9pm on Wednesdays during school time at Monnacoast High School Pool, Central Retail Park, Grahams Rd, Falkirk FK1 1LW. This time is split into 2 sessions, 6-7:50pm and 7:50-9:30pm and costs £4 per person. Places are strictly limited and booking is essential. Kayaks and paddles are provided, but you can also bring your own, which have been thoroughly cleaned!
Logan Majlak takes care of reservations, which can be made from the Thursday before the session (i.e. maximum 6 days in advance) and ONLY by phone, no emails, texts or NFT crypto stuff! Calls are accepted between 6.30pm and 9pm, please do not call outside these hours.
Please note that the pool is very popular and fills up quickly, so early booking is essential.
Benefits Club members have access to a range of benefits.
Here you will find some general information about the club and what we do, as well as contact details for committee members or other volunteers who deal with specific areas of the club. I hope that you will find the answers to your questions, but if not, please feel free to contact any of the volunteers who should be able to give you more information. The club is affiliated to the national governing body, the Scottish Canoe Association, and follows its rules and guidelines in respect of our activities. We follow its rules and guidelines in relation to our activities, coaches, child protection etc. More information is available on the SCA website.