Thinking about establishing a kayak club? We are here to help!

This section will give you the initial tools and outlines how to set up for success, including becoming a Canoe Racing NZ affiliated club. Getting started is easy – we are here to help you put the right things in the right place and direct you to the best people to assist in the journey. 

If you are thinking of starting your own club, we recommend seeking legal advice.

Please contact us if you have any questions and require any advice regarding setting up a club or becoming affiliated with Canoe Racing New Zealand.


To ensure your club’s sustainability, a management committee must be established. This will include a president or chairperson, a secretary and a treasurer who are formed with the intention of making decisions about issues or taking action on tasks. A club’s main committee will be the management team.

Your club may also have a number of different sub-committees who are in charge of activities or areas of the club, such as fundraising, events, social activities etc. Committee members have set roles and jobs to complete. The roles of people on your committee or management team could be:

  • President/chairperson
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Volunteer coordinator

For a list of committee job descriptions and tips to running a good meeting see the Sport NZ website.


You will need to have an up-to-date constitution (set of rules)  in place which outlines your club’s purpose and how your club will operate. A constitution which is current and clear will contribute to the smooth running of your club and can be referred to in times of uncertainty.

The Canoe Racing New Zealand Club Constitution Template provides clubs with all the detail they require while also allowing for some flexibility in certain areas so that clubs can express their unique identities. It is important to remember that this document is not a prescription, it is a template, so clubs may make any changes they wish. However, we would advise that this document has been legally reviewed and any significant changes, other than the flexible areas in green highlight, should be reviewed by a lawyer to ensure the document remains sound.

Canoe Racing New Zealand are happy to assist you with your process to update, amend or adopt a new club constitution.

Sport NZ also has some great resources online. The societies office also has a sample set of rules here.


Incorporation gives an organisation/group its own legal identity, separate to that of its members. This means , amongst other things, the organisations has continuing existence (regardless of changes to membership) and limited liability for members (members not liable for organisation’s debts or obligations) . Read more about Incorporated Societies

Becoming an incorporated society is very easy and there are step-by-step guides on the Societies website.
There are three basic steps

  1. An application form (signed by 15 members, with signatures witnessed by someone who has not signed the application form as a member)
  2. A copy of the society’s rules (constitution) certified by an officer of the society
  3. The filing fee – NZ$102.22 (as at 2022)

There are some basic requirements to maintain your incorporated status, including submitting annual financial report and holding an annual general meeting.  Refer:


To become affiliated with Canoe Racing New Zealand:

  • Your club must be an incorporated society with at least 15 affiliated members. Membership list  and certificate of Incorporation to be supplied with application.
  • Your club must be financially solvent. Signed Declaration to be supplied with application.
  • Club Constitution must align with the Canoe Racing NZ Constitution. Club constitution to be supplied with application.
  • Submit an Application for Affiliation form with additional documents (listed above) to  Your application will go the the CRNZ Board for approval. 

Annual Affiliation fee is $100 +GST.  First fee will be invoiced following board approval.

Once affiliated  your club details will be loaded on to the “Find a Club” section of the Canoe Racing NZ Website. Your club will be issued with a Canoe Racing NZ member log in, password and other relevant information for entering the Canoe Racing database for registering members for events.