Ocean Water Sports Programme

10 January 2012

A group of budding sailors from three Wellington secondary schools has taken part in an inaugural schools' training day as a 'dry run' for an ocean water sports programme that's being set up in the capital.

An instructor shows the ropes to Wellington students on the training day

An instructor shows the ropes to Wellington students on the training day

More than 20 students went out on Wellington harbour in kayaks, waka and on yachts to learn the basics and get a taste for these sports.

Funded by Sport and Recreation New Zealand (SPARC), the aim is to get more young people (16 - 20 year-olds) and adults taking part in ocean water sports - such as kayaking, waka ama, scuba diving, surfing, sailing and triathlons.

The Council will get $300,000 from SPARC's Active Communities fund over the next three years to lead the programme and set up a new ocean water sports centre in partnership with the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club and its sailing academy.

Other water sports clubs, such as Canoe and Kayak and Tunui a te Ika Waka Ama Outrigger Canoe Club, will help to run coaching courses.

The Council's Portfolio Leader for Sports and Events, Councillor John Morrison, says this is a great opportunity to make the most of Wellington's location.

"With the harbour on our doorstep and facilities so close to the central city, we're ideally placed to have a strong focus on ocean water sports and to encourage people to get involved."