Denmark – a country with inclusion
Denmark is a small country, but with inclusion. especially when it comes to people with mental difficulties or/and physical disabilities. There is plenty of great water to paddle, but still plenty of space for more people with disabilities to join one of the 200 canoe clubs.
Denmark is a river, sea and lake country
Denmark is a nation very much surrounded by water, there is 8750 km of coastline and nowhere in the country is there more than 52 km to the sea. Lakes, fjords and rivers are widely scattered all over the country. We love water.
Danes are big fans of participating in sport in an association. It is often the way of gathering and sharing interests. Although Denmark is only 43,000 km2 in size, there are just over 200 kayak clubs.
The Sport Association life in Denmark is mainly based on voluntary work and the price of being a member of clubs is quite low compared to commercial offers.
Inclusion is normal
Disabled people are well integrated into Danish society. There is openness about integration, and rules about accessibility for all.
We have several disabled people included in kayak clubs, but there is room for many more. This means that the disabled participate on equal terms, and are not seen as a
special user group in need of protection. It also means that the expectation is that you are active and contribute to the community with the resources you have.
Kayak clubs have a big diversity in interest, paddle water and club life. Our clubs always wave direct and easy access to water. We have clubs where disabled people can participate in elite initiatives, some places where the focus is on exercise rowing, and some offers that are of a more recreational nature.
There are a few commercial offers where even people with severe disabilities can get canoe and kayak experiences.
Who do we include in danish canoe activity
People with many different diagnoses enjoy paddling. You have a fantastic experience in nature which provides well-being, and club life increases networking. The balance and strength that is trained in kayaking is rewarding for many forms of rehabilitation.
We already have people with the following diagnoses: blind / partially sighted, deaf, cancer, PTSD, anxiety, ADHD and other cognitive difficulties, sclerosis, spina bifida, epilepsy, spastic paralysis,and people with innate or otherwise amputated limbs.
More rehabilitation Potential
However, there is still great development potential. We hope that the National Kayak Federation can succeed in gaining widespread knowledge and opportunities for canoeing and kayaking. It would be great if schools, treatment centers and disease organizations used local clubs as offers to citizens who have the courage for activities on the water. We want many more to learn that canoeing and kayaking has a fantastic rehabilitation potential.