Old Hickory Council - Hanging Rock District

Troop 444: Canoeing Merit Badge






  1. Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that co-occur while canoeing, including hypothermia, heat reactions, dehydration, insect stings, tick bites, and blisters.
  2. Do the following:
        A. Identify the conditions that must exist before performing CPR on a person. Explain how such
            conditions are recognized.
        B. Demonstrate the proper technique for performing CPR using a training device approved by your
  3. Before doing the following requirements, successfully complete the BSA swimmer test: Jump feetfirst into water over the head in depth. Level off and swim 75 yards in a strong manner using one or more of the following strokes: sidestroke, breaststroke, trudgen, or crawl; then swim 25 yards using an easy, resting backstroke. The 100 yards must be completed in one swim without stops and must include at least one sharp turn. After completing the swim, rest by floating.
  4. Discuss the following:
        A. The BSA Safety Afloat policy. Tell how it applies to canoeing activities.
        B. The most common weather and water-related hazards encountered while canoeing and how to deal
            safely with each one.
  5. Do the following:
        A. Name and point out the major parts of a canoe.
        B. Describe how the length and shape of a canoe affect its performance.
        C. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the different materials used to make canoes.
        D. Name and point out the parts of a paddle. Explain the difference between a straight and bent-shaft
            paddle and when each is best used.
        E. Demonstrate how to correctly size a paddle for a paddler in a sitting position and a kneeling position.
        F. Name the different types of personal flotation devices (PFDs), and explain when each type should be
        G. Show how to properly fit and test a PFD of correct size.
        H. Discuss the general care and maintenance of canoeing equipment.
        I. Discuss what personal and group equipment would be appropriate for a canoe camping trip. Describe
            how personal and group equipment can be packed and protected from water.
        J. Demonstrate how to load and secure equipment in a canoe.
        K. Using appropriate knots, demonstrate how to secure a canoe to a rack on land, a vehicle, or a canoe
  6. With a companion, wearing the proper PFD and appropriately dressed for the weather and water conditions, use a properly equipped canoe to demonstrate the following:
        A. Safely carry and launch the canoe from a dock or shore (both, if possible).
        B. Safely land the canoe on a dock or shore (both, if possible) and return it to its proper storage
        C. Demonstrate kneeling and sitting positions in a canoe and explain the proper use for each position.
        D. Change places while afloat in the canoe.
        E. In deep water, exit the canoe and get back in without capsizing.
        F. Capsize the canoe and demonstrate how staying with a capsized canoe will support both paddlers.
        G. Swim, tow, or push a swamped canoe 50 feet to shallow water. In the shallow water, empty the
            swamped canoe and reenter it.
        H. In deep water, rescue a swamped canoe and its paddlers by emptying the swamped canoe and
            helping the paddlers safely reenter their boat without capsizing.
  7. With a companion, wearing the proper PFD and appropriately dressed for the weather and water conditions, demonstrate the following paddling strokes as both a bow and stern paddler:
        A. Forward stroke
        B. Backstroke
        C. Draw
        D. Pushaway
        E. Forward sweep
        F. Reverse or back sweep
        For stern paddling only:
        G. J-stroke
  8. Using the strokes in requirement 7, demonstrate the following tandem maneuvers while paddling on opposite sides and without changing sides. Repeat after switching positions and paddling sides:
        A. Pivot or spin the canoe in either direction.
        B. Move the canoe sideways or abeam in either direction.
        C. Stop the canoe.
        D. Move the canoe in a straight line for 50 yards.
  9. Wearing the proper PFD and appropriately dressed for the weather and water conditions, demonstrate solo canoe handling:
        A. Launch from shore or a pier (both, if possible).
        B. Using a single-blade paddle and paddling only on one side, demonstrate proper form and use of the
            forward stroke, backstroke, draw stroke, pushaway stroke, forward sweep, reverse or back sweep,
            and J-stroke. Repeat while paddling on the other side.
        C. While paddling on one side only, paddle a 50-yard course making at least one turn underway and
            one reverse of direction Repeat while paddling on the other side.
        D. Make a proper landing at a dock or shore (both, if possible). Store canoe properly (with assistance, if
        E. In deep water, exit the canoe and then get back in without capsizing.
  10. Discuss the following types of canoeing:
        A. Olympic flatwater
        B. Outrigger
        C. Marathon
        D. Freestyle
        E. Whitewater
        F. Canoe poling

Canoeing Worksheets for use in working on these requirements

Boy Scout Oath

On my honor, I will do my best

To do my duty to God and my Country and to obey the Scout Law;

To help other people at all times;

To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.

Boy Scout Law

A Scout Is...

A Scout tells the truth.
He keeps his promises.
Honesty is part of his code of conduct.
People can depend on him.
A Scout is true to his family, Scout leaders, friends, school, and nation.LOYAL
A Scout is concerned about other people. He does things willingly for others without pay or reward.HELPFUL
A Scout is a friend to all.
He is a brother to other Scouts.
He seeks to understand others.
He respects those with ideas and customs other than his own.
A Scout is polite to everyone regardless of age or position.
He knows good manners make it easier for people to get along together.
A Scout understands there is strength in being gentle.
He treats others as he wants to be treated.
He does not hurt or kill harmless things without reason.
A Scout follows the rules of his family, school, and troop.
He obeys the laws of his community and country.
If he thinks these rules and laws are unfair, he tries to have them changed in an orderly manner rather than disobey them.
A Scout looks for the bright side of things.
He cheerfully does tasks that come his way. He tries to make others happy.
A Scout works to pay his way and to help others.
He saves for unforeseen needs.
He protects and conserves natural resources.
He carefully uses time and property.
A Scout can face danger even if he is afraid.
He has the courage to stand for what he thinks is right even if others laugh at or threaten him.
A Scout keeps his body and mind fit and clean.
He goes around with those who believe in living by these same ideals.
He helps keep his home and community clean.
A Scout is reverent toward God.
He is faithful in his religious duties.
He respects the beliefs of others.