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Courses

Overview

We currently provide outdoor courses in canoeing, climbing, tandem cycling, caving, triathlon, open water swimming and multi-activity for adults with a visual impairment. If you’d like to do something else then we are always open to suggestions. If we can’t do it ourselves then we’ll try and point you in the right direction elsewhere.

We also help individuals or groups put on private courses or events, which are independent of us. We have finite resources and can’t put on every course we’d like to do, so we assist and encourage others to arrange their own.  The charity does not get involved in the financing of these type of events but offers assistance by connecting people, etc. We can supply instructors and equipment if required.

The activities we arrange

We are based in Kendal in the Lake District. We don’t have our own accommodation and arrange courses where we can obtain suitable accommodation for the activities involved. So, for something like climbing it would be in the Yorkshire Dales or the Lake District. Canoeing it would typically be in the Lake District, unless it was an expedition  on the River Spey or the Wye. For Cycling, it could be anywhere!

Our courses are primarily aimed at visually impaired participants. But to run them we need the assistance of volunteer sighted guides. Our normal ratio of numbers between them is one to one (you definitely can’t do tandem riding without a sighted guide!) so we need a large pool of volunteers that we can rely on to assist us. Indeed, we cannot run the charity without their invaluable help.

We offer a range of courses from complete novice ‘taster’ activities to ones requiring specialist techniques and equipment that you have learnt how to use on earlier courses . So you don’t need to be an ‘expert’ to come along.  Instructors will equip you with suitable clothing and they will teach you the skills required.

Our instructors all have the appropriate outdoor professional qualifications and have many years of teaching and working in the outdoors. They are all experienced in instructing people with disabilities, especially visual impairment.  You should be safe and have an enjoyable time.

Having said this, our courses can be ‘full on’. We don’t wrap participants up in cotton wool. upturned canoe with its crew in the river hanging on to the bow The chances are you are going to get wet! You might get cold and wet from the rain (it’s not all sunshine up here in Cumbria!) or from crawling along a streamway inside a cave. You could even capsize if you are canoeing! Tiredness will also affect you. A long day canoeing or a 40-mile plus tandem cycle ride can be very tiring. As can just a day in the fresh air!

Basically we’d like you to go home happy, feeling as if you’ve been challenged and wanting to come again.

Adventure Courses

These are open to all unless a certain level of experience is required. Our adventure courses for the coming season will be shown here soon. These fill up early in the season but it is still worth getting in touch to put your name on the reserve list. We may put on additional courses, details of which are emailed out as soon as we arrange them, so please ensure you are on our mailing list.

Events

Events are not courses! Vision of Adventure participates in Events – it doesn’t organise them – it just supports your participation in them.  Any Vision of Adventure staff at these events are there purely on an unpaid voluntary basis and will often be competing in the event themselves. So our support is assistive in nature and certainly less formal than on our courses. But you should still have a great time!

The Events we are going to help support will also be published here soon.


Private Courses
VI and Guide with their arms aloft as they run through the inflatable orange finishing arch

Availability on our courses above often fills very quickly and individuals or groups come to us to enquire how they can arrange their own courses or events. These Courses can be ‘private’ (just a grouping of friends) or open to all, depending on what the organiser wants. Vision of Adventure helps by advising on activities, accommodation, etc.  The charity can supply instructors and equipment if required. Basically, we work closely with the organiser to provide the best solution to their needs.

Examples of previous Private Courses we have helped include a 2-day caving/rock climbing event based in Yorkshire Dales, rock climbing weeks in the Spanish winter sunshine and a cycle touring trip across England. At present, we are assisting groups with a winter triathlon training camp in the Canaries.

These ideas work, but if you have a new idea or concept and want to explore it further please get in touch – we’d love to help.

climber sillhouted against the evening sunshine
Privately organised climbing trip to Spain