Sporting Schools is a $200 million Australian Government initiative designed to help schools to increase children’s participation in sport, and to connect them with community sporting opportunities.

Sporting Schools programs are provided free to children and their families to help students build the confidence and capability to be active for life.

To help achieve this, Sport Australia has partnered with more than 32 national sporting organisations (NSOs). There is a program for primary schools, and a targeted program for Year 7 and 8 students in secondary schools.

Paddle Oz will introduce participants to the sport of paddling, providing education on basic water safety and paddling techniques, while also offering opportunities for participants to continue paddling at the conclusion of the program.

Paddle Oz is Paddle Australia’s national participation program. Paddle Oz is now offered as  a Sporting Schools program for Secondary Schools.

Programs are to be delivered of 4 hours.

Below you will find an approximate price for each of the programs for 20 participants including instruction and equipment: (prices will vary depending on location and access to trainers and equipment)

  • 1 x 4 hour program: $940
  • 2 x 2 hour program: $1180
  • 4 x 1 hour sessions. $1661


We recommend that before applying for funding through Sporting School you make contact with either Paddle Australia or your State Paddling Association to determine if delivery is available in your location.

Two different programs are available under Sporting Schools:

Paddle Discovery and Paddle Ball. More information on these programs is detailed in the programs section.


  • Enable more young people to try paddling and stay paddling
  • Engage young people in the sport of paddling through the power of play
  • Provide a quality, enjoyable, sociable and safe introduction to paddling
  • Eliminate barriers to participation by providing access to equipment and instruction
  • Use games and activities to support experiential learning
  • Establish basic paddling skills and knowledge that support future paddling pathways
  • Provide a progression through to specialised areas of paddling
  • Develop an awareness of all aspects of paddling
  • Provide links to clubs, Paddle Education and other paddling opportunities
  • Assist clubs in developing young paddlers
  • Allow flexibility in delivery according to venues and situations
  • Increase the level of safe paddling practices in the community through educating young people


Teachers can either become qualified via the Paddle Australia online Sporting Schools Supervisor qualification and then run the program in house or you can engage with one of of over 1000 PA leaders via our State Paddle Associations. All Paddle Oz deliverers are fully qualified and registered with Paddle Australia as either an Instructor, Guide or Supervisor, all of which are referred to as ‘Deliverers’. These Deliverers:

    • Work within the Paddle Australia Safety Guidelines
    • Have a Working with Children Check
    • Hold a current First Aid Certificate
    • Each activity has a detailed risk management plan and all Deliverers carry first aid and communication equipment.
    • Part of their training includes monitoring situations including weather, environment impacts, other users and participants. Safety is our highest priority, next to providing the most enjoyable experience for your group!

Paddle Discovery

The Paddle Discovery program is designed for participants to learn the basic skills of paddling in an experiential manner through a range of games and activities. Basic instruction may be required to consolidate learning from the games and activities. Very basic craft handling and safety skills should be achieved by the completion of this level. The program can be delivered in a swimming pool and is suitable for all ages of children.


The Paddle Discovery program aims to introduce young people to the activity of paddling. Participants will be able to learn basic paddle skills through the use of games and a fun environment, discovering what an exciting activity paddling can be!


The venue for the Paddle Discovery program can be almost any swimmable, enclosed flat water. This program would work well in a swimming pool, or on a lake or slow-moving river which would allow for a very controlled environment or safety and ease of communication during activities.


  • Awareness of water safety
  • Choose and fit your lifejacket and appropriate clothing for conditions
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge and use for parts of paddle
  • Get into and out of craft from shore without assistance
  • Paddle your craft with an upright sitting position
  • Change direction while paddling to follow a course
  • Maintain balance while rocking craft from side to side
  • Exit your craft, swim around, self-rescue with assistance
  • Make appropriate safe decisions when paddling with others
  • Improved water confidence

Paddle Ball

The Paddle Ball program is designed for participants to learn the basic skills of paddling in an experiential manner to enable them to develop skills and knowledge to participate in the team sport of Paddle Ball. Very basic craft handling, safety skills and rules of the game should be achieved by the completion of this level.


The Paddle Ball program aims to introduce young people to the sport of Canoe Polo using a modified version of the game, known as Paddle Ball. The aim of the program is to promote an activity that can be delivered by a local community or group, on their local waterway or pool, targeting all ages.


The venue for the Paddle Ball program can be almost any swimmable, enclosed flat water such as a swimming pool or similar venue which allows for a very controlled environment for safety and ease of communication during activities.


  • Choose and fit your lifejacket and appropriate clothing for conditions
  • Show basic knowledge and use of parts of paddle
  • Get into and out of craft from shore without assistance
  • Paddle your craft with an upright sitting position
  • Change direction while paddling
  • Maintain balance
  • Make appropriate safe decisions
  • Awareness of water safety
  • Improved water confidence
  • Gain knowledge and experience the game of Paddle Ball
  • Work as part of a team
  • Strengthen relationships

If you would like a deliverer to come to your location with all the equipment to run a Sporting Schools program, please contact your local State Paddle Association:

PaddleWA: | 08 92858501

PaddleSA: | 0408 390 211

PaddleVic: | 0488 366 116

PaddleNSW: | (02) 8736 1254

PaddleQLD: | 0414 960 728

PaddleTAS: | 0497 656 710

There are several resources available that will help in the delivery of the Paddle Oz program, these include:

Paddle Australia Safety Guidelines: These guidelines provide the minimum requirements for the safe conduct of Recreational Paddling activities. This document gives a guideline to help operate a safe fun paddling activity. All Leaders are responsible to ensure that they undertake a thorough risk assessment prior to activities to ensure that additional requirements are considered and if required undertaken.

Program Handbook: This handbook outlines the programs and outcomes of both Paddling programs as well as games and activities to help the program to be fun and engaging.

All Paddle Australia Supervisors, Guides and Instructors are able to deliver the Sporting Schools programs.

If you would like to become registered as a provider to enable PA to assign programs to you. Please email:

Registered teachers are able to become Supervisor qualified by completing the Paddle Australia online program for the  Sporting Schools Supervisor qualification Successful completion of this program will enable teachers to deliver in house programs. Detail of this program can be found here

Do participants have to know how to swim?

No, all participants are fitted with lifejackets. Paddle Oz Deliverers are fully qualified and will assist all participants
and ensure that everyone has a great time on the water!

What clothes should participants wear to the program?

  • Clothing suitable for paddling and wet-water activities (participants will get wet).
  • Footwear that can get wet, to wear while paddling. These are to protect the feet from things under the water. Aquasocks/neoprene-type beach shoes or surf booties are ideal. An old pair of runners or sandals will also work. NOT thongs as these can fall off in water.
  • A complete spare change of warm, dry clothing to change into when the participants get off the water.
  • A towel

In colder weather this includes:

  • A thermal top or light woollen jumper (like a school jumper).
  • Comfortable pants e.g. thermal/woollen pants, board shorts or leggings NOT jeans.

In warm weather this includes:

  • Board shorts / shorts / t-shirt/ rash vest
  • Suitable sun protection, e.g. 30+ sunscreen, long sleeved shirt, hat.

Will all paddling equipment be provided?

  • Yes, the Paddle Oz Deliverer will have all the paddling equipment available for a safe and fun experience on the water. This includes a correctly fitted lifejacket and helmet if required.

Should participants bring food and water?

  • Paddling uses up lots of energy, so participants should bring along a drink bottle, lunch or snacks. Ideas for snacks include: muesli bar, banana, apple, mandarin, packet of nuts, dried fruit etc.

What if a participant wears glasses?

  • It is advised that a strap to secure the glasses is worn.

Will someone stay with a participant if their pick up is running late (out of school program)?

  • Yes, the Paddle Oz Deliverer will stay behind until the last child has been picked up from the venue.

Any other questions or queries:

  • Please contact Paddle Australia
    Phone: 02 9763 0670
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