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Power Sports

Power Sports

Powered Watersports using either a powerboat or jet-ski are incredibly popular on the inland waterways.


Many of the lakes lend themselves perfectly to training in these sports as they have sections wide enough to facilitate the sport but without the heavy traffic associated with the rivers. The widest sections also facilitate the wake created by some of the sports and ensure that the shoreline flora and fauna are not impacted.

The sports are made more popular by the free access provided by the slipways Waterways Ireland and other agencies have installed in most towns and also in more isolated locations all marked on the Navigation guides.

 

The canals do not sustain powered watersports sport to the same extent. Narrow and shallower than the river and lake sections the canals have a speed limit of 5km which acts as an inhibitor.

 

All waterways users are asked to work co-operatively in their use of the navigations. At a minimum this means all users must slow their speed through urban areas, passing harbour & marinas and in narrow channels. No wake zones apply on the Lower Bann and speed limits are marked by signs on the navigations where they apply.

Powerboating

High speed powerboats are mainly used by their owners on the lakes and wider sections of river on the inland waterway network.  While some are used for destination to destination trips, the majority are used to support recreational activity, such as waterskiing, wakeboarding, or pulling ringoes or donuts.

There are power boats for hire on the waterways network but most have much smaller engines than that needed to pull a skier or boarder and are used for day trips on the navigations.

Boat driving techniques and training is provided through clubs and training centres for those interested in improving their techniques. Contact details available on www.sailing.ie .

 

Jetskiing or Personal Water Craft

Practised on river and lake sections, of the Erne System, Lough Allen, Lough Key, Garadice, Lough Ree and Lough Derg, the sport is mostly enjoyed by recreational users bringing their own equipment to the navigation and launching for the day or part-day. Some hire companies also exist mainly on the larger lakes for those that would like to enjoy the sport.

Clubs have been set up around the country now to provide jetskiers with support and training to get the most from their equipment.

Competitive events are organised by clubs which are members of the national association Irish Sailing Association (www.sailing.ie). Training is provided through clubs and training centres for those interested in improving their techniques or beginning racing. Contact details also available on www.sailing.ie .

 

Wakeboarding

One of the fastest growing Watersports in Ireland, wakeboarding is practised on the river and lake sections of the network. Opportunities are open to those with their own equipment and boats or club members.

Occasional coaching sessions are available organised through the clubs and one Specialist Activity Centre offers wakeboard coaching and they are located on the Shannon Navigation at Portumna.

Cable wakeboarding, that is being pulled by a cable also takes place in the Grand Canal Basin in Dublin.

 

Waterskiing

Practised on river and lake sections, of the Erne System, Lough Allen, Lough Key, Lough Garadice, Lough Ree and Lough Derg, the sport is mostly enjoyed by recreational users bringing their own equipment to the navigation and launching for the day or part-day.

One Specialist Activity Centre offers waterskiing lessons and are located on the Shannon Navigation at Portumna.

Clubs have been set up around the country now to provide waterskiers with support and training to get the most from their equipment.

Boat driving techniques and training is provided through clubs and training centres for those interested in improving their techniques. Contact details available on www.sailing.ie .

 

Powered Watersports Events

Events highlighting the sports take place along the navigations in areas where easy access for spectators can be facilitated. In these locations the bye-laws are used to either close the navigation to other traffic or create time periods in which other waterways users can pass through the event zone. Event Organisers must contact Waterways Ireland to make check if this facility is available before organising their event.

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