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Boating Sports | Suntan Sports | Under the Sun Sports



Boats and boating activities are both very diverse and very enjoyable. Recreational boats, which are also called pleasure craft, include a number of types of boats. There are boats that people live on, boats that people race with, boats that people fish from, boats that are for touring only, boats that tow people behind them, and there are boats that just cruise along the sparkling blue waters on a beautiful sunny day. It is important to observe local waterway rules and regulations and always ensure that the following safety equipment is onboard (just in case!):

1. Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs – also commonly referred to as lifejackets)  for each person on board. Don’t forget your dog’s safety! Flotation devices are also available for canines.

2. A flotation device that can be tossed overboard for a person in the water, if needed

3. A first aid kit

4. Navigation lights

5. A loud sounding device like a horn, airhorn or bell

6. Fire extinguisher(s)

7. Miscellaneous: flashlights, an anchor, extra rope, a VHF radio, whistles and paddles

Also, always remember to bring sunscreen, UV-protective clothing, sunglasses, sun visors, and keep hydrated!

Canoes are commonly found on the lakes and rivers and easily transported and carried. Kayaks are known for their superior maneuverability and are usually found in white-water rivers, calmer inland waters and along coasts in the oceans. Rowboats use oars, are also called dinghies and are usually heavier compared to other boats. There are three categories for sailboats and they are small sailboats, daysailers and cruising sailboats.

People who love the sport of fishing will find just about anything to fish from. The boats they choose could be kayaks, canoes and rafts, but for serious sport fishing, most fishermen use a different type of boat. These boats are the Center Console boats, Walk-around boats, Dual Console boats and Bay boats that all come in a variety of sizes.

When it comes to boat racing as a sport there is one particular race that comes to mind. The University Boat Race is a rowing race in England and the participants are the Oxford University Boat Club and the Cambridge University Boat Club that takes place on the Thames in London with a course that is four miles long. There are eight rowers per boat in addition to the coxswain. A coxswain is a person who is in charge of the steering and navigation of the boat. These races have been going on for many years. In fact, the first race was in 1829 and has been taking place every year since 1856. This sporting event is not only popular with the students of the universities, but also with an audience of approximately 20 million people. The next race is scheduled on April 3, 2010.

Canoe and kayak racing is very similar, with the main difference being kayaks will also have races in whitewater. Marathons are long distance races that take place on rivers, lakes or open sea. There could be obstacles such as shallows or rocks. The races are sometimes divided into sections to stretch the contest over several days. The canoe/kayak sprint takes place on calm water on a straight course. A couple of kayak champion racers are Anna Hemmings and Ivan Lawler. Jet sprint boat racing is when a crew of two race against the clock in a jetboat through a course set with a winding collection of channels in a little over three feet of water. The noise level is pretty high for a spectator sport. Offshore powerboat racing is raced by large boats that are typically used on the ocean. This is a dangerous race because the boats are powerful racing machines. This category of racing is a “rich man’s sport” because of the expense not only for the boats, but also for the fuel to race it. Team racing is actually a branch of sailboat racing. The racing team must have good teamwork and communication combined with a fast boat. A good crew can tell if the team is winning or losing at any time during the race. Offshore yacht races are held over long distances and in open water. Some famous offshore yacht races are the Bayview Yacht Club North Channel Race, the Clipper Round the World Race, the Bermuda Race, the 2005 Rolex Transatlantic Challenge and several more.

Perhaps you have a boat story you would like to share. Perhaps you own an unusual boat, or you do something unusual with it or on it. We at suntan.com would love to hear from you. Tell us your story. Just email us at our Suntan Crew.

In the meantime, get out in that wonderful sunshine and enjoy your boat. Don’t forget to be vigilant when out in the sun and protect your skin with sunscreen.

-Ms. Suntan

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