Dates: Sunday 29th July – Thursday 2nd August
Competing Athletes: 82
Medal Events: 4
Canoe Slalom competitions consist of timed runs down a white water course, which contains up to 25 gates. Touching a gate adds a two-second time penalty to the run; missing a gate incurs a 50-second penalty. The time taken to run the course in seconds is added to penalty seconds incurred to give the overall time.
Within the Canoe Slalom discipline there are events for both canoes and kayaks.
In canoe single (for one person) and canoe double (for two people) events, competitors use single-bladed paddles; in kayaks, competitors use paddles with blades at both ends. While the boats used in Canoe Sprint events are long and streamlined, Canoe Slalom boats are small, light and agile. The different shape allows for greater manoeuvrability through the rapids.
- Eddy: A white water feature downstream from an obstacle.
- Drop: A fall of water creating fast current and tough eddies.
- PFD: A paddler’s buoyancy aid; short for 'personal flotation device'.
- Spraydeck: A cover worn around the paddler’s waist and stretched over the cockpit entrance to keep water out of the boat.
- Upstream gate: A slalom gate that has to be negotiated against the water’s flow.
Canoe Slalom final (mens) at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games