Canyon Guide Briefing


Introduce them to the centre and there activity, make sure they understand what they are about to do and undertake (video footage or still photos help).

Ask if there are any medical problems i.e. recent broken bones, asthma, diabetics etc.

Briefly explain what’s involved in the activity.

Please go to the toilet before you put your wetsuit on.

NOTE:- Check the reaction of people when your explaining what’s involved in the activity and there ability to put equipment on, this will give you a little guide of how they are going to perform/react in the activity.


  • KIT UP.


Make sure you give out all the wetsuits at the same time in order to get good sizing and distribute them evenly (an inappropriate sized wetsuit can be the difference between someone having a good trip or a bad one).

Give out wetsuit and socks

When every one is ready give out cags and do harnesses (leave harness leg loops and make sure waist belt is tight, with big groups get them to pair up and help each other).  MAKE SURE THEY ARE DOUBLED BACK

Fit buoyancy aids.

Give out helmets and hoods.





Try and brief clients away from the river this is a distraction and adds to noise factor,  when giving the brief get all of the clients in a circle so that you have eye contact with them and you can see whether they are paying attention.  If there are any distractions such as passing cars or jets wait until they have gone. Leave fitting the helmets and hoods until after the briefing so that everyone can hear you.


Explain what Canyoning is:-

Jumping, sliding, swimming, scrabbling down a mountain stream.  All sections of the canyon have more than one option so please don’t feel pressured into jumping if you don’t want to.



Moving around in the Canyon:-

The river is very slippery, the rocks are covered in a black algae this makes it hard to see how deep the pools are.  To prevent falling over you must always check your footing put your feet in-between rocks rather than on top of them,  If you feel like your going to slip sit down and shuffle along on you bum  (swimming and crawling are the safest ways to move around in the canyon). Take your time and be careful.


Carabineers and ropes:-

Explain how to use a screw gate carabineer, explain how the gate works to do it up to the top then loosen it off in order to stop it jamming, explain how to do a squeeze check.



Its important to help each other through the canyon, follow me down if I give instructions to the person behind me they have to pass the message on.  If you struggle with a section turn round and help the person behind you.


Always jump with a one foot launch and step out, Always look forward when you jump if you look down your body weight with over rotate you and you will face plant. Put your hands above your head, this will stop you looking down and keep your body straight.  If you put your hands out they will get slapped and you will jar your shoulders,  Keep your legs straight and together.



When you are sliding put your hands up above your head and relax.  Arch your back and put your weight on you buoyancy aid to protect your butt.


It’s very loud in the canyon so please make sure you understand everything that is said. If you don’t then please ask.

Don’t take off any of the protective equipment until the activity is finished if you have a problem with any equipment please ask a guide.

Please take your time and be careful.

Before you leave:-

Put helmets and hoods on check fitting,   Check all clients equipment individually before heading down the path.


Don’t forget the safety kit, (Ropes, First Aid Kit inc:- sam splint or neck brace, Slings, Spare krabs, Knife, Multi tool appropriate kit for water level).


Do a risk assessment as they walk into the gorge or canyon to see how they are going to do in the canyon. This will give you a rough guideline of there ability and spatial awareness.



Example Declaration of Risk

Canyoning Date………………. Location……………………… Guide/s…………………

“Vertical Descents treats the health and safety of all participants as a priority. As with any sport/leisure activity there are hazards associated with Canyoning. It is important for the safety of everyone taking part that each participant is acquainted with those hazards and individually takes all relevant action to minimise those hazards as much as possible.”

I understand that: -Canyoning is physically and mentally intense and may require extreme exertion –All of the jumps and slides are optional –The possibility of injury to myself exists –Canyons have varying terrain, may be slippery and have many trip hazards –I will get wet and cold –Canyoning can cause bruising and stiffness –If I take my equipment off I will be putting myself in danger –If I don’t listen to the guides I will be putting myself and others in danger –Cars are parked in the car park at owners own risk –The site will not accept responsibility for valuables lost or damaged on the Canyoning site


I confirm and agree that: -I am physically and mentally able to take the strain and exertion involved in Canyoning –I have no medical condition that would prevent me from taking part in Canyoning (please make your guide aware if you use an inhaler or any other medical aid) –I am fully aware of the risk to myself and others involved in Canyoning –I will comply with the rules and use all equipment as instructed –I will obey all instructions from the guides –I will pay any charges incurred before leaving the site –I also agree to pay any administration charges, which might occur as a result of cheques being returned, or credit card payments being declined

I have read and fully understand this agreement. I am aware that by signing this agreement I acknowledge and accept the inherent risk that Canyoning entails and I waive any claim that may result from my participation in Canyoning activities.