This may surprise you, but it's never too late to start whitewater rafting! Seniors who follow proper safety procedures and make smart choices while river rafting can enjoy their adventure just as much as younger people. These tips will help you stay safe as a senior taking your first trip whitewater rafting.
Wear a Properly Fitted Life Jacket
You may have been swimming for decades, but life jackets are still a necessity during whitewater rafting trips. It's important for your life jacket to fit properly. When choosing a life jacket, pick one that is comfortable, but snug against your body. You shouldn't be able to remove your life jacket by lifting it up over your head.
Rapids are rated by difficulty. Class 1 rapids are the easiest, providing little or no difficulty even for beginners. Higher classes are more difficult. The classes go up to Class 6, which is the most experimental and dangerous class. For your first rafting experience, pick the lowest level possible--ideally, a class 1. While class 1 and class 2 are both relatively easy, some rapids are difficult to level appropriately. Therefore, a range of difficulty can exist within one class. To ensure that the class of rapids you choose is right for your level of experience, speak with a professional, like Outland Expeditions, before signing up.
Disclose Medical Conditions
Whitewater rafting is an intense activity that can require strenuous physical participation. This sport requires you to paddle for long periods of time, so your arms and shoulders need to be fairly strong; and, you need to have a strong core to prevent injuries.
If you have any medical conditions that could potentially prevent you from engaging in a high level of physical activity, tell your whitewater rafting guide before you begin. Be prepared to describe the nature of your condition and any limitations you may have. Based on the information you provide, your guide should be able to judge whether or not the rapids you have signed up for will be safe for you.
White Water Raft with a Reputable, Experienced Company
The best way for you to experience rafting safely and without trouble is to sign up with a reputable company with many years of experience in the industry. Knowing that your rafting guide has been properly trained and vetted by a company that knows whitewater rafting and values safety will give you peace of mind as you embark on your first white water rafting journey.