ACA Certification  Courses

Updates for current instructors

All ACA instructors are required to complete an Update course every four years in order to maintain their certification. It does not have to be in the fourth year after you got certified. It can be at any time during the four-year period.  When you do the update does not change your certification "anniversary" date. If your certification expires in June of 2020 - and you do the Update in April of 2019 - your new anniversary date is still June 2024.

For an update, you will be expected to display the same skill set that you had when you were certified. That includes teaching. Our updates and ICWs typically involve a group of paddlers that are there to serve as your students. The update hosever is not another assessment. Instead it is an opportunity to refine and expand your skill set as an instructor and coach.

​​2021 Instructor Training Schedule

Session #1:   L2 Instructor ICW - Chincoteague Field Station Staff

Date: May 19, 2021 (Fri)

Location: Chincoteague, VA

Instructor Trainer: Rick Wiebush



Session #2:   Outward Bound Trip Leader Training and Assessment
Dates: May 24 - 29,  2021 (Mon - Sat)
Location:  Nanticoke River

Instructor Trainer: Rick Wiebush
Note: Private training for Chesapeake Bay Outward Bound staff

Session #3: British Canoeing Sea Leader Training/Assessment

Dates: Sept. 15 - 16, 2021 (right before the Kiptopeke Symposium)

Location: Cape Charles, VA

Instructors: Todd Wright, Rick Wiebush

Cost: $260

The purpose of this training is to prepare people who want to lead others in a moderate water environment.  There is a major emphasis in this course on leadership skills including planning, communication, risk assessment, and incident management. Skills such as navigation, rescues and towing in rougher water, and launching and landing a group in moderate surf also receive considerable attention. The BC Sea Leader award is a leadership award, not a coaching award.




We always rent a house in Cape Charles for these special pre-Kiptopeke classes. Housing costs are typically $50 - $55/night for a shared room.

Session #4: ACA Instructor Updates, Levels - 1 through 4.

Dates: Nov. 12 - 15, 2021 

Location: Charleston, SC

Instructors: Jeff Atkins, Ashley Brown, Rick Wiebush

Cost: $TBD

The ACA has asked us to do a series of instructor updates to make up for those that couldn't be done during the pandemic. The updates will cover all instructor levels (1 - 4). The number of days will vary depending upon level. Cost will be approximately $125 per day.