“Rowing in the same direction” is a very tangible form of Teamwork. Being exposed to real-life situations in a natural environment, navigating and reaching goals together as a group speeds up the process of getting to know and to trust each other. And “being in the same boat” creates a sense of shared mission and the experience of a joint effort. When crew members are pulling on their paddles, they are pulling for each other as well. Their journey is part of the team’s journey.
A canoe or kayak trip in the wilderness is a journey on multiple levels. To reach your destination is a physical and mental challenge, which requires you to helps discover inner resources, leadership skills and cooperation skills. It’s also an emotional process with real decisions, potential conflicts and their resolutions, or lack of resolutions, some “here we go again” patterns of behavior, but also the chance to improvise.