Kayaking Merit Badge
CLASS PREPARATION PAGE
 
GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS
 
Please arrive with ample time prior to the start time of your class for registration.  Remember there will be others checking in as well and depending on the size of the class, and the event the class is being held in conjunction with, that registration may take a little time.

You should bring a blue card filled out properly for this class. - Scoutmaster Bucky Online participants - you will not be allowed to participate if you have not provided your signed blue card prior to the class - you should have forwarded your blue card to Scoutmaster Bucky prior to the class via email or postal mail:
Scoutmaster Bucky - 5724 Aldrich Avenue South  Minneapolis, Minnesota  55419.

If you are not familiar with how to fill out a blue card, you should familiarize yourself with Scoutmaster Bucky's "How To Fill Out A Blue Card" document. Click here for Scoutmaster Bucky's "How To Fill Out A Blue Card".  Remember it is a Scout's responsibility to take care of their own blue card from beginning to end.
 
 
 
Your Scout Uniform is required to be worn for attending this Merit Badge session.   If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact Brian Reiners; Scoutmaster Bucky via email or on the phone at 612-483-0665.

Reviewing the merit badge pamphlet PRIOR to attending and doing preparation work will insure that Scouts get the most out of these class opportunities. The merit badge pamphlet is a wealth of information that can make earning a merit badge a lot easier. It contains many of the answers and solutions needed or can at least provide direction as to where one can find the answers.

It is NOT acceptable to come unprepared to a Scoutmaster Bucky event. You can (and should) use the Scoutmaster Bucky Kayaking Merit Badge Workbook to help get a head start and organize your preparation work. Please note that the use of any workbook is merely for note taking and reference and completion of any Merit Badge workbook does not warrant, guarantee, or confirm a Scouts completion of any merit badge requirement(s). You can download the Scoutmaster Bucky Kayaking Merit Badge Workbook by clicking here .   If this link is not working please check the internet for other merit badge workbook options.

It should be noted that this merit badge class is not meant for those who just want to come and see what they can get done. It is possible to complete this merit badge by being properly prepared and having done the preparation work prior to the class. Preparation is a MUST 
 
 
Other Kayaking MERIT BADGE PAGES
 
Kayaking Merit Badge Current Requirements
 
Scoutmaster Bucky's - Kayaking Merit Badge Workbook
 
Kayaking Merit Badge and Merit Badge History Page
 
Kayaking MERIT BADGE SPECIFICS
 

Kayaking Merit Badge Things to remember to bring for this Merit Badge Class:

1. Merit Badge Blue Card properly filled out and signed off by your Scoutmaster

2. Kayaking Merit Badge Pamphlet

3. Scout Uniform

4. Proper and appropriate swimwear

5. Proof of having passed your BSA Swimmer Test within the last 12 months (failure to provide this proof to the satisfaction of the Merit Badge Counselor and/or Class Instructor will negate your eligibilty to participate in the class).

6. Permission Slip signed by parent or guardian when and if required, by the facility or location the Kayaking activity is being held at (check with Scoutmaster Bucky if you are uncertain whether a permission slip is needed) 

7. Supporting documentation or project work pertinent to this merit badge which may also include a Merit Badge Workbook for reference with notes

8. A positive Scouting focus and attitude

 
REQUIREMENTS WITH SUGGESTED STUDY PREPARATION NOTES
 

1. Do the following:

a. Explain to your counselor the hazards you are most likely to encounter while participating in kayaking activities, including weather and water-related hazards, and what you should do to anticipate, help prevent, mitigate, and respond to these hazards.

Scouts should review this requirement and its components and be prepared to discuss, demonstrate, explain, and show as necessary their first aid knowledge and proficiency as it applies to this merit badge.

b. Review prevention, symptoms, and first-aid treatment for the following injuries or illnesses that can occur while kayaking: blisters, cold-water shock and hypothermia, heat-related illnesses, dehydration, sunburn, sprains, and strains.

Scouts should review this requirement and its components and be prepared to discuss, demonstrate, explain, and show as necessary their first aid knowledge and proficiency as it applies to this merit badge as well as the ability to identify hazards likely to be encountered in canoeing activities.

c. Review the BSA Safety Afloat policy. Explain to your counselor how this applies to kayaking.

Scouts should review the BSA Safety Afloat policy prior to the class. It is NOT acceptable to attend the class not having read the BSA Safety Afloat policy and having a general understanding of it applies to this merit badge and canoeing activities. Scouts clearly not having prepared ahead of class will not be allowed to continue participation in the class after arrival until they show their comprehension of this policy.

 

2. Before doing requirements 3 through 8, successfully complete the BSA swimmer test: Jump feetfirst into water over the head in depth. Level off and swim 75 yards in a strong manner using one or more of the following strokes: sidestroke, breaststroke, trudgen, or crawl; then swim 25 yards using an easy, resting backstroke. The 100 yards must be completed in one swim without stops and must include at least one sharp turn. After completing the swim, rest by floating.

ALL SCOUTS SHOULD BRING PROOF OF HAVING PASSED THE BSA SWIMMER TEST IN THE PAST YEAR.  (A camp swimmers tag clearly showing it belongs to the Scout, a signed letter from a certified swimming instructor stating the Scout's competency as measured against the BSA Swimmer's test requirements, or a signed note from a BSA Swimming Merit Badge Counselor or Scoutmaster will suffice - parental notes are not enough for this due to the merit badge requirements.)

Even with this "proof" the counselor(s) reserve the right to retest any Scout that they deem necessary or to satisfy their interest in safety. Scouts not having any "proof" will be required to pass the BSA Swimmer Test prior to starting participation in the class.  Those not able to pass the BSA Swimmer Test may be dismissed from the class at the discretion of the counselor.  Those not able to pass the BSA Swimmer Test and allowed to stay in the class will be limited to "on land" requirements at the discretion of the counselor.

 

3. Do the following:

a. Review the characteristics of life jackets most appropriate for kayaking and understand why one must always be worn while paddling. Then demonstrate how to select and fit a life jacket for kayaking.

Requirement 3a will be discussed in class, however only Scout who can actively discuss their findings as required in this requirement component will be signed off. The selection and fitting of a life jacket element of this requirement component will be covered in the class, however Scouts should make sure they have a general understanding of how to fit different type of life jackets that they might encounter and be prepared to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding during the class.

b. Review the importance of safety equipment such as a signal device, extra paddle, sponge, bilge pump, and throw bag.

Scouts will want to be prepared for discussion on the importance of safety equipment and the specific items listed in this requirement component. Only those Scouts actively participating in the class discussion will be considered for sign off on this requirement component.

 

4. Do the following:

a. Name and point out the major parts of a kayak.

b. Review the differences in the design between recreational, whitewater, and sea or touring kayaks. Include how length, width, stability, and rocker are involved in the design of each type.

c. Review the advantages and disadvantages of the materials most commonly used to make kayaks. Explain the care, maintenance, and storage of a kayak.

Scouts need to review the merit badge pamphlet for requirement 4. All information needed to complete these components of Requirement 4 can be found in the Kayaking Merit Badge pamphlet. It is recommended to make notes on your Merit Badge Workbook to use when sharing your knowledge during the class. Below are some guides in aiding Scouts in preparing to show their ability to tie the identified knots.

d. Using the trucker's hitch and bowline, demonstrate how to secure a kayak to a rack on a vehicle or a trailer, or to a rack on land.

Scouts will need to show their proficiency using rope to secure a kayak to a rack / vehicle / trailer utilizing appropriate and referenced knots. Below are some guides to use while refreshing one's self on how to tie a few of these knots. Only Scouts showing proficiency in these knots AND properly and safely able to demonstrate the securing of a canoe will be considered for sign off on this part of Requirement 4.

 

TRUCKER'S HITCH

BOWLINE

 

5. Discuss the following:

a. How to choose a kayak paddle.

b. The different materials from which paddles are made, parts of a paddle, and the care and maintenance of a paddle.

Requirement 4a will be covered in the class, however Scouts should review the merit badge pamphlet for a basic understanding of how to select a properly sized paddle for themselves when kayaking. For Requirement component 4b, Scouts will need to make sure they have reviewed and are familiar with the parts of a paddle, how and what they are made of, and the proper care and maintenance for kayaking paddles. Scouts will be asked to share their understanding and research during class discussion on this requirement and its components.

 

6. Using a properly equipped kayak with an open cockpit, a sit-on-top, or an inflatable kayak, do the following:

a. Safely capsize and perform a wet exit.

b. Reenter the kayak with assistance from a buddy boat.

c. Demonstrate a kayak-over-kayak rescue.

d. Demonstrate the HELP position.

e. Capsize the kayak, swim it and the paddle to shore, and empty water from the kayak with assistance, if needed.

Requirements 6 through 8 are all skill-based requirements. While the counselor will utilize the EDGE method; Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, and Enable to cover these requirements, it is still not a guarantee that all Scouts will complete each of the requirements and its components. Only Scouts who successfully demonstrate these skills to the counselor's satisfaction will be signed off on each requirement and component therein. Some Scouts may find it difficult to complete some of these requirements simply due to physical development or other reasons. Every effort will be made to assist and accommodate each Scout however it MUST be noted that these are skill-based requirements. All Scouts will have an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to perform and maneuver for each of the components in each of the requirements.

 

7. As a solo paddler, use a properly equipped kayak to demonstrate the following:

a. Forward stroke

b. Backstroke

c. Forward sweep

d. Reverse sweep

e. Draw stroke

f. Stern draw

Requirements 6 through 8 are all skill-based requirements. While the counselor will utilize the EDGE method; Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, and Enable to cover these requirements, it is still not a guarantee that all Scouts will complete each of the requirements and its components. Only Scouts who successfully demonstrate these skills to the counselor's satisfaction will be signed off on each requirement and component therein. Some Scouts may find it difficult to complete some of these requirements simply due to physical development or other reasons. Every effort will be made to assist and accommodate each Scout however it MUST be noted that these are skill-based requirements. All Scouts will have an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to perform and maneuver for each of the components in each of the requirements.

 

8. As a solo paddler, use a properly equipped kayak to demonstrate the following:

a. Paddle a straight line for 25 yards, make a sharp turn, and return 25 yards in a straight line.

b. Spin or pivot 360 degrees to the right and 360 degrees to the left.

c. Move abeam to the right 10 feet and to the left 10 feet.

d. Stop the boat in one boat length.

e. Paddle a buoyed course of a length determined by your counselor that includes two right turns and two left turns performed while under way.

Requirements 6 through 8 are all skill-based requirements. While the counselor will utilize the EDGE method; Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, and Enable to cover these requirements, it is still not a guarantee that all Scouts will complete each of the requirements and its components. Only Scouts who successfully demonstrate these skills to the counselor's satisfaction will be signed off on each requirement and component therein. Some Scouts may find it difficult to complete some of these requirements simply due to physical development or other reasons. Every effort will be made to assist and accommodate each Scout however it MUST be noted that these are skill-based requirements. All Scouts will have an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to perform and maneuver for each of the components in each of the requirements.

 
this page last reviewed / updated: April 2019
footer