I like to mix my two professions (education and river guiding) and follow a nomad lifestyle around Mother Earth.
With my "physical activity and sport science" and "teacher" university degrees I worked as a teacher at the basque public school, and I like it, but there I have not the pleasure of going down many white water rapids, which is what most I like to do. So again I left that "worthy" job of society, grabbed my backpack and kayak and once again I crossed the Atlantic pool in search of a path of uncertainty.
With my other profession, the river guide, I could escape from the routine and I have worked in 15 different countries.
Now I'm putting my two professions into one, and as Instructor of the International Rafting Federation (IRF) I already taught training courses and assessments for rafting guides in 5 countries. The experience is accumulating and we are improving. The rivers are no longer away from work.
The IRF (International Rafting Federation) aims to provide common standards or guidelines for river professionals around the world. His guide certification scheme for professional development is internationally recognized and the responsible for that is the Guide Training and Education committee (GTE).
On the IRF website www.internationalrafting.com appears the Guiding folder where you can find the list of all the guides and instructors certified by the IRF, as well as internationally recognized river signals, a list of courses + assessments offered around the globe, guide jobs and so on. On the list is Eneko Yarza / Instructor 4/5 / Basque Country
Here in Ecuador, in November and December 2011, I taught several training courses with subsequent evaluation to achieve the international certification. They have been in the Pastaza, Jatunyacu, Jondachi and Hollin rivers. I hope these courses will help the rafting industry to have improved communication, more security, more confidence and more fun.
Here are some pictures to give you an idea of these courses.
<- O the first theory class in Baños de Agua Santa turistic town center.
Theoretical class at the kayakers hostel in Tena, Hostal Wellcome Break. ->
|Analyzing The Elbow rapid before running it, brown with plenty of water. Pastaza river, upper section.|
|The same El Codo (elbow) rapid with less water.|
|Navigation trainings on the Jatunyacu river, rainy amazonian jungle.|
|Happy guide learners, Pablo (Pyrenees) and Julian (Germany), after crossing huge waves on the Rio Jatunyacu.|
Practicing the safety talk at the entrance to Río Jondachi-Hollín.
Flip drill practice.
-> Shallow water crossing.
Mechanical advantage systems with pulleys. ->
Swimmers rescue with throw bag.
|Coming back to the water after the porteage on the middle section of the Pastaza river.|
From the raft looking at the next rapid to choose the appropriate line (Boat Scouting). Middle section, Rio Pastaza. ->
To obtain the International Rafting Federation certification is needed to overcome a theoretical exam of knowledge, and a practical assessment of skills with a series of tests that evaluate rafting navigation techniques, crew training and management, and emergency and rescue techniques. You need to prove guiding experience beforehand and hold a current first aid certificate with CPR (not older than 2 years).
|Motivated for the assessment.|
|Inside the swimming test with the intention of crossing the stream.|
-> Raft reflipping test..
Double rope throw to rescue 2 swimmers.->
The Trip Leader conducting one rescue on an emergency situation.->
<- Ferry maneuvers. Río Jondachi.
|Navigation test on the upper section of the Pastaza river with high water.|
|And on the middle section.|
So, are you encouraged to navigate through some rapids in our work office?