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Kayaking is the use of a kayak for moving across water. Kayaking is generally differentiated from canoeing by the sitting position of the paddler and the number of blades on the paddle. A kayak is defined by the International Canoe Federation (the world sanctioning body) as a boat where the paddler faces forward, legs in front, using a double bladed paddle. Almost all kayaks have big decks, however, there are many sit-on-top kayaks, and these boats are growing in popularity. A canoe is defined as a boat where the paddler faces forward and sits or kneels in the boat, using a single bladed paddle. Canoes can be closed deck or open deck.
Whitewater kayaking involves taking a kayak down rapids. Sea kayaking, sometimes referred to as Ocean Kayaking, involves taking kayaks out on to the ocean or other open water e.g., a lake. Sea kayaking can involve short paddles with a return to the starting point or "put-in" or expeditions covering many miles and days. Kayaking of all kinds has continued to increase in general popularity through the 1990s and early 21st century.
Kayaks are classified by their intended use. There are six primary classifications: polo, slalom, whitewater, surf, touring/expedition, light touring/day tripping and general recreation. From these primary classifications stem many sub-classes. For example, a fishing kayak is simply a general recreation kayak outfitted with features and accessories that make it an easier kayak from which to fish. A creek...