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Welland International Flatwater Centre

The Welland Recreational Canal Corporation created the Welland International Flatwater Centre (WIFC) in 2007 building on the direction of the City of Welland Council starting in 2005 to pursue sport tourism and to begin to utilize more of the Waterway for sport.  The newly created flatwater centre is situated on two hundred and seventy two acres of the waterway.  Local rowing, canoe kayak, canoe polo, dragon boat, triathlon and open water swimming clubs utilize the waterway daily for training. 

The WIFC also is home to two international standard courses; a 1,000 meter Albano buoyed course (the North Course) and 2,000 meter Albano buoyed course (the South Course). The WIFC has endeavoured to become the premiere site for hosting flatwater sport events, championships and training camps and has been the selected venue for local, provincial, national and international regattas ever since.

The WIFC venue rivals top facilities in the world with infrastructure exceeding current international standards for hosting and for accessibility. Attracting the most attention though may be the Welland Flume: two independently controlled, moving water, variable speed, training tanks outfitted for rowing, canoe, kayak and dragon boat where athletes can train in the off season and experience an on-water feel.

For more information and schedules visit www.wifc.ca.

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  • Fully operational state-of-the-art facility; the first TO2015 Pan Am / Parapan American Games venue to be operational
  • Completely accessible venue for training and competition meeting the highest international standards
  • Timing Tower and Athletes Centre with key card security access functionality
  • The Venue has wireless connectivity throughout from the 1000 tower to the south weigh-in and medical docks provides easy communication between stations, start towers and officials provides weather monitoring to track current weather conditions: wind speeds, solar radiation, UV rays ect, as well as incoming weather systems
  • Gigabit speed internet at the venue through our sponsor, Cogeco
  • 500 plus permanent seats at the venue
  • Community washrooms with wheelchair accessibility available to the general public at the facility year-round during designated hours
  • 250 tree wind screen
  • Ample parking with spots for over 500 vehicles
  • Paved trails along both banks of the canal, allowing for thousands of individuals to follow and watch the races
  • Finish Lynx Timing System with Split Timing Capability allows paddlers and rowers to track their times at three different markers along the course
  • Fully accessible Poralu docks, make and models used at the last three Olympics including London 2012, meet accessible standards and allows for Paracanoe and Adaptive Rowing to take place
  • Leading the way among Canadian venues with three automatic start systems
  • 35 ft deep water with basin-like characteristics makes it an ideal location for all flatwater sports
  • The course's sloped banks make for great viewing in a natural amphitheatre setting
  • 2,000 metre Albano Buoy System marked course
  • Three level Timing Tower with full view of course
  • Wireless connectivity at finish for spectators
  • Weather station for tracking weather conditions: wind speeds, solar radiation, UV rays etc
  • Gigabit speed internet at the venue through our sponsor, Cogeco
  • Bleacher seating at the finish for up to 660 spectators plus grassed areas for viewing
  • Ample parking with spots for over 350 vehicles
  • Paved trail along the west bank of the canal, allowing individuals to follow the races
  • Finish Lynx Timing System with Split Timing Capability allows paddlers and rowers to track their times at three different markers along the course
  • 35 ft deep water with basin-like characteristics makes it an ideal location for all flatwater sports
  • The course's sloped banks make for great viewing in a natural amphitheatre setting

What do canoe, kayak, dragon boat, and rowing have in common with the Welland International Flatwater Centre (WIFC), apart from hosting races and practices from spring till fall? The WIFC features an Indoor Paddle Tank that allows you to participate in these flatwater sports throughout the winter months!

The Welland Indoor Paddle Tank delivers community sport & recreation programming in a multi-sport, moving water, variable speed training tank located at the Welland International Flatwater Centre (WIFC), a legacy venue of Toronto 2015 Pan Am / Parapan American Games.

The Indoor paddle tank is one-of-a-kind in North America, accommodating each of the four flatwater sports: canoe, kayak, rowing (both sweep and sculling disciplines) and dragon boat. The tank has many features, including adjustable water speed, which allows use by first time community members and national champions alike as the moving water can be set at different speeds based on training.

The program will provide a unique opportunity to the local community to experience various flatwater sports. Schools, community groups, and sporting teams / clubs are encouraged to grab a paddle or an oar and give flatwater sports a try! Whether you have stood on the podium at worlds, or have never been out on the water, this opportunity allows for individuals of all experience levels and all ages to participate no matter the season.

The facility promotes the principles of physical literacy as outlined in the Canadian Sport for Life model. These principles are fostered through programming opportunities both in the tank and in the 2,000 square foot fitness space, outfitted with free weights, weight equipment, cardio accessories, exercise machines, and ergs. The facility also features open space, ideal for housing yoga, zumba, or any other instructor led fitness group.

Contact paddletank@welland.ca or call 905-735-1700 ext. 4000 to register.