It´s very important to take care of your sport equipment. If you are professional athlete it´s part of your job and if you paddle just for fun there is still lots of benefits in keeping it in good shape!
Simple things first ... with making sure your boat is dry inside after you used it will ensure keeping boat light and rigid. Make sure to take time after every session to dry it properly!
If you are slalom paddler its more likely that you will damage your boat while paddling. Always try to fix little cracks and deeper scratches as soon as possible. You can buy everything you need HERE.
While paddling in salt water is fun, top coat hates it! Clean your boat with fresh water and if you feel like going extra mile add some ecological soap :)
Good way how to give extra protection to your equipment is to use protective covers once you are not using it or moving it by car or plane. While traveling by car using roofrack pads and boat sock traveling by plane or shipping your boat with container is different story. You will need combination of faith, good luck and boat cover.