Canoe polo is a fast-paced sport played in a pool or lake. The sport is growing in popularity in Taranaki, with the help of The Taranaki Canoe Polo Club.
Louise Bullen, Funding Coordinator, said people often don't know what is involved. “It is played in a pool or lake. Each player has their own canoe. The ball is passed from player to player and they score a goal at either end. It’s a really fun and fast paced sport.”
“Our players develop team sport skills but also kayaking and ball skills. It started off as an adult league for kayakers to keep their skills up in the winter months, but we have expanded to high school and intermediate aged players.”
“Our club has had quite a lot of growth in the last few years. Our boats were getting old and starting to require a lot of maintenance to keep them at a safe standard. We really needed to replace them,” Louise said.
Toi Foundation provided a grant of $15k for the purchase of new canoes.
“Because we have players from intermediate age up to adults, we needed to get some different sized boats. To control your boat well, you really need to have a boat that is tight enough that you can use your knees to control it.”
“The grant covered the majority of the cost of the boats and if we didn’t have that grant, we would have had to put our fees up. Other clubs around the country ask that members buy their own boat, but the canoes are pretty expensive.”
“We have always taken the approach that we want to provide boats. The grant has enabled us to continue to offer the sport of canoe polo in Taranaki and continue to make it accessible for people from a range of backgrounds. Cost is not a barrier to play the sport,” Louise said.
Contact the club at [email protected].