Tides for Beginning Sea Kayakers ACA IDW Presentation

Tides are a basic subject that all Sea Kayakers should be aware of, whether from the Great Lakes or not. I created this presentation as a beginning step on my road to the ACA ICE, or the Instructor Certification Exam for my ACA Instructor Certification. The material is intended to be very basic as presented to beginners, so some information is vastly condensed and simplified. The objective for the instructor candidate is to present a subject in 10 minutes or less that covers the basics and uses an instructional method within the classroom.

Personally I was challenged by the objective to present tides for sea kayakers within a 10 minute time limit. But I endeavoured with the help, or hindrance depending on your view point of Microsoft PowerPoint to use the slides to keep me to 1:00 minute per slide and cover the topic in as much detail as possible.

The main feedback I got from this method was that it is clearly too talky and does not offer much of an opportunity for student interaction. I agree with this assessment and would in the future most likely try to do some hands on visualization of the rule of twelfths involving containers and water that would illustrate rather than narrate the key points. However I did have a cool logo, and lots of info for the student to walk away with.

I hope to present a series of posts on the experience of going through the IDW/ICE process that might prove helpful to other paddlers considering this as a development option.
It was a challenging and enriching experience that I won’t soon forget.

I began my IDW/ICE process earlier this month, hence why I haven’t posted in a while and why John Fleming has thankfully filled in as editor in chief! This process absorbed a lot of my time and energy. Luckily my family, my job, and even the dog was behind me in achieving this goal. A BIG BIG thank you should be stated right up front to the Bloyd-Peshkins of Have Kayaks Will travel for their hospitality and generosity. I stayed with Alec and Sharon each weekend. I would return to Oak Park every evening exhausted to gourmet home cooking, a place to dry my gear and eat them out of house and home. More importantly I had two talented and like-minded paddlers who had been through the experience to sound ideas, advice and share information with. They fielded many slightly panicky phone calls from me about the challenges and urged me on towards the finish. Their wealth of knowledge, enthusiasm and positivity sustained me during what I consider to be a fairly serious milestone for me as a person and a paddler. The challenges of juggling, work, family and this certification effort were made far easier and far more fun by having them in my life.

Never underestimate the power of the paddling community to support and sustain one another. Often we critique each others decisions, viewpoints, personal relationships and skills without calling attention to the virtual, if not literal river of generosity and good will that pours forth uninhibited on a regular basis.

Derrick Mayoleth and I have both commented on the fact that the paddling community is a bit unusual. What other group of people meets someone once at an event and then a week later calls near perfect strangers up on the phone to invite themselves to stay for days/weeks of paddling and not have it be a bit weird? I struggle for analogy in this department. I played soccer with a lot of different people for a long time, we tend not crash at each other’s houses or call to discuss the sport much. Funny…

Anyhoo, looking forward to getting out on the water, and unfortunately getting into the pool. Thus is life in Michigan.


  1. I am really inspired along with your writing abilities and also with the layout to your blog. Is this a paid subject matter or did you customize it yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to peer a nice blog like this one today. Goodbye from France

  2. Well, we totally enjoyed having you here. One of the things that immediately impressed us about kayaking was the community nature of this sport. We run a free paddlers B&B and get just as much out of being hospitable as our guests get out of our hospitality. But Keith, you're more than just another fellow paddler to us. You're a dear friend.

    Congrats on your accomplishment during the ICE. If we helped in any way, we're pleased.