Whew! The Huron River doesn’t boast rapids or fast currents but maneuvering through it by canoe is a workout.
I started my journey at the Village Canoe Livery in Milford, about a 45-minute drive from my Saint Clair Shores residence. For $28 I was suited with two paddles, a cushion and a canoe for the remainder of the day.
I’ve played with rowing machines at the gym and always felt like they did their job, but experiencing canoeing first hand was a whole different ballpark. Canoeing helps build shoulder muscle and increase muscle endurance in the upper body. It helps stabilize the trunk and tone the arms. I’ve even felt the burn in my obliques as my torso rotated switching from side to side, but never until making my way down the Huron River did I realize the great aerobic workout canoeing provides.
Depending on a person’s weight, canoeing at a moderate pace (less than 6 mph) burns between 400 and 600 calories per hour. High speed canoeing (6+ mph) burns 700 to 1000 calories per hour — not bad for a workout that can be done while enjoying nature, taking in fresh air and sun and shared with others or done solo.
There are many places to canoe in the Metro Detroit area, the Huron River alone hosts many great liveries. I liked Village Canoe Livery and while I will definitely be a customer there again, I will also be exploring new places to enjoy this great sport.