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HUMAN American National Standard


The platform for applying the American National Standard for Human-propelled recreational craft instruction is as follows:

Boat Characteristics: Paddle craft is a vessel powered only by its occupant(s), using a single or double-bladed paddle as a lever without the aid of a fulcrum provided by oar locks, thole pins, crutches, or similar arrangements. Rowing craft is a vessel powered only by its occupants, using an oar as a lever with the aid of a fulcrum provided by oar locks, thole pins, crutches, or similar arrangements.


Wind/Water Conditions: Flat water, with current less than 1 knot, protected from the wind and waves.


Operation Conditions: Daytime with no restricted visibility or threatening weather. 

The same team of recreational boating experts that produced the American National Standard (ANS) for On-Water, skills-based HUMAN-propelled craft instruction has developed a HUMAN Standard - Technical Support Document (TSD).  The free 125-page document contains the most complete set of information and tools available to assist education providers, including:


  • Information about the ANS for on-water HUMAN-propelled craft instruction, why it was developed, and why education providers should use it in their human-propelled craft instruction programs


  • Tips and recommendations from recreational boating experts across the country for how to use the ANS to design, develop and implement courses, curricula, syllabi, and lesson plans that deliver high-quality On-Water, skills-based HUMAN-propelled craft instruction, and


  • Guidelines for using performance assessment / measurement rubrics to design specific behaviors into programs that result in skilled entry-level HUMAN-propelled craft operation.


This guide has been designed to help education providers ensure that their skills-based instructional courses are not only of the highest quality, but also meet the ANS for entry-level HUMAN-propelled craft instruction.  


All recreational boating safety education providers, large and small, national or local, are encouraged to use the materials contained within the Human TSD to develop or enhance their On-Water instruction. All are also encouraged to share this news with family members, friends, and colleagues.  By taking an active role in raising the overall quality and availability of skills-based training and instruction for entry-level recreational HUMAN-propelled craft operation, all can help create a culture of safety in recreational boating that reduces accidents and saves lives on our nation’s waterways.


Click here for a free download of the HUMAN Standard TSD.


2010 - present

2010 - present

On-Water Recreational Boating Skills Standard – Human-Propelled, or EDU-2 On-Water HUMAN-propelled Standard. The U.S. Coast Guard’s National On-Water Standards (NOWS) Program grant management team and The American Boat & Yacht Council (ABYC) are pleased to make available On-Water Recreational Boating Skills Standard – Human-Propelled, formally approved as an American National Standard on October 11, 2016.  


A free download of the HUMAN-propelled Standard is available here on our website.

HUMAN-propelled Standard and Rubrics Evaluation Checklist

National Field-Testing Program (FINAL)

HUMAN Standard & Rubrics (HS&R)

National System of Standards for Recreational Boat Operation - On-Water Standards Grant III


This document contains the script used to conduct the On-Water portion of the National Validation Program Data Collection Sessions. It includes the language used to guide Craft Operators through the sequence of procedures and maneuvers. It also contains the Rubrics descriptions Data Collectors (Standard Evaluators) used to make observations about the proficiency with which Craft Operators engaged in those procedures and operations.

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