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What are the physical requirements for rafting?

What are the physical requirements for rafting?One of our readers asked the question about what the physical requirements for rafting were? I guess they were thinking about going white water rafting for the first time. They were perhaps a bit nervous about being able to stay in the raft, or perhaps paddling. They also perhaps worried about carrying a heavy load while portaging or just holding on while you navigate the rapids of any particular river. These are all valid concerns and most rafting guides will address these issues before ever embarking on your white water rafting trip.

What are the physical requirements for rafting?

Well the answer is that it depends. All rivers with rapids were rafting companies offer rafting trips are rated in terms of difficulty and physical requirements. If you want to read more about this rating system, go to White Water rafting river ratings or click here. This page will fill you in on the rating system and provide you with a broad gauge of what to expect for a river that is rated in each group.

Interview the Rafting Company

It also depends on the rafting company and the tour package they offer. Some trips are totally managed by the tour company and you go along for the ride, while others feel that the work of paddling and portaging, camping out is all part of the experience. Some people also look for this type of experience. So if you plan to go rafting, esquire with the tour company about the exact expectations of each participant before you sign up. A class II rapids is basically a floater with little or no experience needed. While a class IV is much more interesting with lots of rapids and most companies will require experience and some physical conditions.

Class I and II will often be able to support seniors and children to give them the experience of rafting without the danger of more challenging rapids in a class III or above kind of trip.

Time of Year

The time of year is also important. Early spring and late fall are going to be colder so you need to wear appropriate clothing. Always bring along an extra set of clothing for everyone. Chances are you will get a bit wet on most trips and drenched on class III or higher. Even on hot summer time days, the weather can be unpredictable and be quite cool along the river in the shade. If you are going on an over night trip, dry clothes in a water proof bag is a must. Unless your gear is being transported separately by car.

Finally spring runoff or storm runoff can change a normally tranquil class II into a raging Class III or IV in minutes. Before you sign up always check conditions. Talk it over with the operator to be sure that you have the physical requirements necessary to handle the conditions. This is especially true for children and seniors.

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One Response to “What are the physical requirements for rafting?”

  1. we were thinking about going white water rafting and were wondering what the physical requirements were. turns out pretty much anyone can go white water rafting, as long as you match rapids with the skill level

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