Orienteering is a competitive sport. Participants navigate their way through a designated area of rough terrain and must-visit various checkpoints. The participants use maps and compasses, and the winner is the person with the lowest elapsed time.

Canadian Orienteering History

Orienteering Canada was founded and incorporated in 1967. Orienteering Canada became a renowned member of the International Orienteering Federation in 1968. The very first orienteering championship was held on August 10, 1972, in Gatineau Park, outside Ottawa.

What Equipment is used for Orienteering?

  • Maps

Orienteering maps are an essential aid for this sport. The orienteering maps show many topographic features. They reveal cliffs, ditches, boulders, and fences. They also show vegetation, trails, and elevation. Although any map may be used for orienteering, the best one to use is a specific orienteering map. The orienteering map shows the course and includes all the control points which must be visited.

  • Compasses

One of the most essential tools to orienteering is a compass. It is necessary for correct navigation. There are many compasses available to choose from. There are several which range in quality and size.

  • Racing Suit

A racing suit is not required. However, a serious or competitive racer will wear one. It is a stretchy, lightweight garment. It protects you from the undergrowth. It allows freedom of movement and works well even when it gets wet.

  • Footwear

Running shoes are best suited for this sport. They should be strong but light. They should also have non-slip soles to allow for a good grip on various types of ground. Different types of surfaces will be encountered, such as rock and mud.

  • Control Card

At the beginning of the event, a control card and a map will be given to you. The control card is used to prove you have visited all the necessary checkpoints and in the correct order. Each checkpoint will have a device you must use to record your visit. There will be either an electronic device or a manual hole punch you must use to mark your card.

  • Sunscreen

It is essential to use sunscreen in these events, especially if the UV rays are intense.

  • Hydration

During hot weather, staying hydrated is of the utmost importance. Water works best. Drinks with electrolytes are also a good idea.

  • Snacks

This type of sport requires much energy. It is a wise idea to have pre and post snacks to keep yourself fueled.

  • Towel

When participants are moving at a rapid rate of speed, a towel to wipe away sweat would be of great help.

If you would like to become an eager participant in this sport, it is recommended that you research it thoroughly to see what you are up against. Ensuring you are medically and physically fit to participate in these types of events is extremely important.