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Paracanoeing is canoeing for athletes with a range of physical disabilities. The sport is governed by the International Canoe Federation (ICF). Paracanoeing debuted at the Summer Paralympics held in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 where single kayak races were contested.


The two main types of paracanoe boat are kayaks (K), with a double-blade paddle, and outrigger canoes called va'as (V) where the paddler has a second hull as a support float and uses a single blade paddle with a T-top handle.

Competitor classification

Paralympic classification of mobility impairments has been restructured as of April 2015; in kayak competition (K1) there are three different classes for both men and women:

KL1 (formerly A; Arms): This grouping is for paddlers who have no trunk function (i.e. shoulder function only). A KL1 class paddler is able to apply force predominantly using the arms and/or shoulders.

KL2 (formerly TA; Trunk and Arms): Paddlers who have good use of the trunk and arms, but limited use of their legs. They are unable to apply continuous and controlled force to the footboard or seat to propel the boat.

KL3 (formerly LTA; Legs, Trunk and Arms): This class is for paddlers with a disability who have good use of their legs, trunk and arms for paddling, and who can apply force to the foot board or the seat to propel the boat.

Non-Paralympic competitions including va'a events use the same system of classification (VL1, VL2, VL3).

Competition format

Paracanoeing is contested at World Championships, World Cups and continental championships; paddlers compete in kayaks (K1) and in va’a outrigger canoes (V1) both men and women.

All international paracanoeing competitions are 200 m sprints.

ECA Competitions

2019 ECA Clubs Canoe Polo European ...
September 21. - 22. 2019, Catania, ITA
Olympic Hopes - Canoe Slalom
October 4. - 6. 2019, CZE
2020 ECA Ocean Racing European ...
January 1. 2020, Cherbourg-en-Cotentin, FRA
2020 ECA Canoe Slalom European ...
May 15. - 17. 2020, London - Lee Valley, GBR
2020 ECA Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe ...
June 4. - 7. 2020, Bascov, ROU
2020 ECA Canoe Marathon European ...
June 25. - 28. 2020, Budapest, HUN
2020 ECA Canoe Polo European Cup I
June 27. - 28. 2020, Mechelen, BEL
2020 ECA Junior&U23 Canoe Sprint ...
July 2. - 5. 2020, Moscow, RUS
2020 ECA Canoe Polo European Cup II
July 25. - 26. 2020, Essen, GER
2020 ECA Junior&U23 Wildwater ...
August 13. - 16. 2020, Solkan, SLO
2020 ECA Junior&U23 Canoe Slalom ...
August 13. - 16. 2020, Krakow, POL
2020 ECA Canoe Freestyle European ...
October 5. - 11. 2020, Vaires-Sur-Marne, FRA
All competitions


2019 Canoe Sprint World rankings released
2019 Canoe Sprint World rankings released

International Canoe Federation released canoe sprint world ranking for the season 2019 based on points from two World Cup races in Poznan (POL) and Duisburg (GER) as well as World Championships in Szeged (HUN). European paddlers are among the best.

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Olympic Hopes regatta in Bratislava concluded with 200 metres races
Olympic Hopes regatta in Bratislava concluded with 200 metres races

International Canoe Sprint Olympic Hopes regatta with young paddlers from36 countries on the start line concluded with 200 metres heats, semifinals and finals. Young competitors from Belarus, Germany, Ukraine, Serbia, Georgia, Hungary, Portugal, Denmark, Canada and Kazakhstan recorded wins on the last competition day.

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Three medals for European paddlers at the 2019 ICF Canoe Ocean Racing World Championships
Three medals for European paddlers at the 2019 ICF Canoe Ocean Racing World Championships

France, more precisely Saint-Pierre de Quiberon hosted this year’s Ocean Racing World Championships. European paddlers won three medals in very tough competition. Jorge Enriquez Gutierrez won silver for Spain in men's Junior event, while Hector Henot and Claire Dewaste picked up medals for host country. Henot finished second in U23 event and Dewaste was third in junior category.

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