Join us for one of our early morning paddles on one of the most beautiful stretches of the Thames. The river is usually very quiet with amazing light and lots of wildlife at this time.
This is a small group 2-hour paddleboard session - for individuals, couples, families and groups of up to 6 paddlers.
We run these sessions at "half-tide" when there is almost no river flow at Richmond, making it very safe.
However please note that the session is only open to people with prior paddleboarding experience, and not suitable for beginners. If you haven't paddled with us before, feel free to join any of our other lessons to get some experience before joining us on Dawn Patrol.
The session will start with a safety briefing and some land-based training before heading out on the water for a guided tour of the river. You'll be able to ask for technique advice and tips along the way.
Depending on tide and conditions we will either head upriver towards Eel Pie Island and Teddington, or downstream towards Isleworth and Kew Gardens.
Can I bring my dog?
Yes, just select the "add-on" when you book. Unfortunately we don't have dog lifejackets.
You do not need to be a proficient swimmer, but should be comfortable with falling into water while wearing a buoyancy aid.
A certain level of flexibility and ability to get up to standing from kneeling is required for learning to paddleboard.
Before taking part, please make Paddle Richmond staff aware of any significant medical condition/disability that may affect your ability to participate, or to understand instructions. If you have any doubts regarding fitness to participate, please contact Paddle Richmond to discuss your concerns in advance, or seek medical advice from a doctor.
We advise that you do not participate in paddleboarding if you are pregnant. If you do so, it is at your own risk.
You will need to shower / wash thoroughly after the session if you have fallen in or been splashed, and need to ensure that any open cuts are covered. Note that we do not have shower facilities at Richmond.
We do take people with physical and mental disabilities out on the water, however please contact us before booking as you may need a private session to ensure that we are able to provide the right level of support, and that you receive the coach's full attention.
What to bring
Please arrive wearing the clothes you intend to paddle in as we have very limited space to get changed.
We have a safe storage space for your bags and valuables.
No specialist clothing is required, but no jeans or cotton please, as cotton gets very cold when wet. In warm weather, swimwear or ordinary quick drying gym gear will be fine (shorts/leggings/T-shirt/fleece).
We usually paddle barefoot on these sessions, but you could wear water shoes, or old sandals, flip flops or trainers if you'd prefer to wear shoes.
If it’s sunny please bring a hat and sun cream, and a bottle of water.
In colder weather (November - March), wearing a wetsuit is advisable. We have wetsuits available if requested in advance, or bring your own. Also, please bring extra layers, a towel and a change of clothes just in case you take a dip during the lesson.
You may also want to bring a small dry bag for spare waterproof/warm clothing, money, any medications you may need and your phone in a waterproof pouch. We have these for sale if you don't have one. If you are worried about losing sunglasses please use a sunglasses strap, or buy one from us for £5.
You will be using our paddleboard and paddle. Buoyancy aids are provided and are compulsory on all our sessions.
Your session will start with a safety briefing and some land-based training on the riverbank or our pontoon near Richmond Bridge. This typically takes 10-15 minutes depending on group size.
We will then head out onto the river, either upstream towards Eel Pie Island and Teddington or downstream towards Richmond Lock, Isleworth, Kew Gardens and Chiswick, depending on the tide.
*The distance actually covered will depend on wind and tide conditions on the day.
Online bookings by eola