Water is the greatest natural playground on earth. It hosts various sports such as swimming, rowing, canoeing, kayaking etc. Kerala is blessed with numerous water bodies across state and hosts great water sport events such as Nehru Trophy Boat Race. But, we have never explored the full potential of our water bodies as a valuable sports infrastructure. Moreover, the cost involved in traditional (snake boat race) and modern (rowing, canoeing, kayaking) water sport events makes it difficult to promote it in a big way to exploit the full potential of our water bodies.

The limitations of our traditional & modern water sport events are as follows

  1. High Cost of boats/canoe/kayak
  2. High transportation cost or difficulties in transportation
  3. High maintenance cost of traditional boats like Chundan vallam
  4. No sports celebrity from the event. One snake boat has more than 90 rowers. Even the captain of the winning boat never becomes popular
  5. High organizing cost

By considering these facts, Sports & Management Research Institute (SMRI) started SMRI Water Sports Research Centre at Kanjippadom, Alappuzha with the following objectives:

  1. To explore the full sporting potential of Kerala water bodies;
  2. To promote new low cost water sports tournaments which can be accessible to all;
  3. To support the traditional boat races
  4. To ensure a good livelihood to the rowers through water sports itself.
  5. To promote rowing as an alternate exercise and entertainment
  6. To limit the pollution of our water bodies

To achieve the above mentioned objectives, SMRI is initiating Kerala Water Sports League (KEWATERS)


KEWATERS is a unique sports league which combines professional events and recreational events. The details of the league are given as below

kewaters (640x181)


  1. Canoe Race– Canoeing using Indian style boats- Single paddle (approx. length- 15ft, FRP) Individual event

  Tournament Fun Events

  1. Pedal boat race– (2 persons team)

Can add one or two competitions like Water Cycle Race or Surf module race. These games are for amateurs and families who like to participate in these events. 

Special Competition

  1. CORACLE (Kuttavanchi) Race– single (in selected locations)

The League Structure

KEWATERS League is consisted of

  1. 10 premier I-Boat tournaments which will be conducted in various districts (one tournament/month) by SMRI or the organization specially created for running KEWATERS
  2. 20 Different open I-Boat tournaments affiliated to KEWATERS and organized by different clubs or organizations

Objectives of KEWATERS

  1. Create professional water sports league and commercialize the existing boat races for its survival
  2. Conduct 365 days tournaments, coaching camps and other events to promote water sports and to commercialize it.
  3. Sports agent support to players for getting endorsement and providing medical benefits, pension etc
  4. Effective use of water bodies across the state for environmental protection, recreation and employment generation

Advantages to Society

  1. Players and organizers of the Water Sports League will earn livelihood and social status through the League.
  2. Great employment and revenue generation opportunity
  3. Develops Sports Tourism based on water sports
  4. Regular practicing and competitions protecting water bodies
  5. Best exercise for all. Water bodies are less air polluted compared to roads and streets
  6. Best Leisure activity

Advantages to Sponsors

  1. Better reach to the hearts of Keralites
  2. 365 days longevity and brand visibility
  3. Can link your sales directly to the sponsorship
  4. Live broadcasting opportunity
  5. High news value and coverage


Balu Shankar (PGDSM), Arjun (PGDSM), Mini J (CSM), Shaiju (ADSB)

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