WAKA AMA ACTIVITY IN COVID-19 ALERT LEVEL 2 is as follows (Gathering Size Update 30 May 2020):

  • You can now extend activity beyond your bubble
  • You may participate in W1, W2, W3, W4, W6 and W12 under the requirements that follow in this pānui.
  • Club training can resume but must adhere to the following health requirements: 

Contact tracing requirements:

1.      Clubs must keep a register of paddlers, coaches and managers who attended practices.
They must capture; date, time, name and phone or email address for each person present

2.       Clubs must also keep a register (as in 1) of any whānau or friends that attend practices and may not be paddling.

3.       These records must be easily accessed for contact tracing and kept for at least 4 weeks after the attendance was recorded. The information collected may only be used for the purpose of contact tracing at the request of the Ministry of Health or local district health boards and must be kept secure

Here is a link to Contact tracing information on the Sport New Zealand website:

Hygiene requirements:

1.      Clubs must put in place processes to wipe down and clean all shared waka and equipment before and after use (This also applies to shared paddles, life jackets, safety gear, and other shared equipment)

2.      Waka Ama clubs that have a physical club facility or one that is shared with another organisation, must ensure that public health guidelines are adhered to regarding that premise.

3.      Waka Ama Clubs that rent or lease facilities must ensure that the owner has adhered to the public health guidelines and should request a copy of what guidelines  have been put in place for the facility.

4.       Individuals must maintain a high level of personal hygiene, especially handwashing and surface cleaning.

Here is a link to Hygiene information on the Sport New Zealand website:

Gathering requirements:

1.      Gatherings at clubs – indoor or outdoor, must not exceed 100 people  (This will be reviewed by Government after 22 June) that includes spectators, paddlers, coaches,   managers, officials, and supporters.

2.     For Waka Ama club practices where multiple waka are on the water, congregations of paddlers, coaches, and managers before, during, and after practice must not exceed 100

3.      Spectators and whānau who are not paddlers, coaches or managers should be discouraged from attending practices

4.       Care must be taken where up to 100 people may congregate in groups at communal points such as entries, shared toilet/changing room facilities and car parks, and to maintain physical distancing within and between groups. Phasing of activities is recommended to allow time for people to pass through these areas safely.

Social Distancing:

1.      It is recommended that individuals maintain physical distancing of 1 metre and in the case of someone who is not known to you, you should maintain a 2 metre physical distance.

2.       It is recognised at alert Level 2, that contact during physical/recreational activity will occur, but this should be minimised as much as possible and distancing  should resume when not participating in sport or recreational activities.


In Level 2 you will now be able to travel out of your region and domestically as long as all activities are in keeping with Public Health guidelines and done safely.

Water Safety:

Regular safety precautions must always continue to be adhered to:

  • Life jacket/s
  • Two forms of communication
  •  Spare paddle/s
  • Leg leash (OC1)
  • Bailer/s
  • Tell someone you are going paddling and when you are likely to be back
  • If you are paddling in the evening, make sure you have a light on your waka that is visible 1 meter high and 360 degrees. (This applies to W1, W2 W3, W4, W6 & W12)


  • Please consider the weather conditions before paddling. Check the tide & check the wind conditions. Do not paddle in weather conditions e.g. strong wind / large swell, that are beyond your capability. 
  • All equipment should be checked prior to paddling. Most W6 Waka have been sitting outside for at least 6 weeks, so it is important to:

1. Check the lashings are still good and tightly attached to the taumanu. Check the lashings on the ama too.

2. Check the bungs are still in and it is always good practice to check that there is no water in the bulkheads of the waka or the ama

3. Lastly, check that there are no cracks or physical damage to the waka or the seats before going out on the water.

  • High-risk activities should only be completed within the confidence and skill level of the individual participating to continue to reduce the need for emergency services assistance.
  • Remember that while we have been in lockdown daylight savings has changed, it will get dark earlier.
  • The seasons are changing, and the weather is getting cooler. So be prepared for the conditions
  • Be responsible and adhere to Maritime NZ guidance

Also...remember that for many of us, we have not been for a paddle in 6 weeks. Take it easy when you get back out on the water, don’t overdo it in your first session. You do not want an injury to set you back with even more weeks off paddling.

Waka Ama Events:

Whilst sports events are able to resume during Level 2, under Ministry of Health guidelines, the New Zealand Government has made very clear that events and competitive sport should phase-in, to ensure thorough health and safety measures are in place. In keeping with that philosophy, Waka Ama New Zealand has made the decisions that:

1.       Waka Ama New Zealand will review the commencement of waka ama events after the 22nd June Government Level 1 announcement.  Until that time, no Waka Ama NZ sanctioned events will be permitted to take place.

2.       Any event already listed on the Waka Ama NZ Website for May/June 2020, will be cancelled/postponed and Waka Ama NZ will contact those event organisers to work through rescheduling their event for a future date. 

3.       All Waka Ama events already listed on the Waka Ama website calendar as ‘sanctioned’, ‘approved’ or ‘subject to sanctioning’, along with any rescheduled from May/June, will need to be re-sanctioned according to the requirements.

For more information

  • You can stay up to date with the latest information and advice from the New Zealand Ministry of Health here:
  • There is also a dedicated Government a website where you can find all essential information
  • COVID-19 Alert levels:
  • Information regarding COVID-19 in relation to the Sport and Recreation sector is available here:

Example of Club COVID-19 Level 2 Processes

Tauranga Moana OCC - 

Taniwha Outrigger Canoe Club -

These documents are attached below

COVID-19 Alert Levels for Waka Ama

Alert Level 4

Alert Level 3

Sport New Zealand COVID-19 Community Resilience Fund

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Sport New Zealand has this week announced a new fund designed to assist as short-term relief for Regions and Clubs across all sports throughout the country.

From Monday 11th May, all 6 of our Waka Ama Regions and all Waka Ama New Zealand affiliated Waka Ama Clubs will be eligible to apply to the Sport New Zealand Community Resilience fund. for more information:

If you have any direct concerns regarding COVID-19, you can call the dedicated Healthline for free on 08003585453 (or +64 9 358 5453 if you’re using an international SIMS)

If you are feeling unwell or have any symptoms of COVID-19 please stay home – Do not paddle. 
Please contact should you have any questions

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Updated: May 13, 2020