How long you have been canoeing/coaching/involved in the club?
I started paddling at Elmbridge Canoe Club in 1999 after a summer holiday come and try it sessions and have been training and racing at the club ever since.
I did my level 1 coaching qualification in 2012 and in 2013 helped with beginner sessions over the summers. In 2014 I took over as coach for the handicap 20- 30 group.
At what level do (did) you compete/coach with achievements?
I have raced all my time at Elmbridge Canoe Club, doing all the marathon races as well as the local and national sprint regattas. In marathon, I worked up the ranks to Division 2, where I still compete today.
Over my time I have won lots of races, including National Championships and Hasler Finals but sometimes it’s the ones where I didn’t win that stick out in my memory.
I coach the Handicap 20- 30 group. These are paddlers who have been paddling for a few years and help to develop and refine the skills they need for racing and training as they progress through the club and racing system. All the juniors with the senior group have been coached by me at some point over the last few years.
UKCC Level 2 Coaching Paddlesport
UKCC Level 1 Coaching Paddlesport
Why you do it?
I love being out on the water.
After a long day at work, nothing is better than being out on the river. Having that place to switch off from work and focus pushing myself is great. I still race but the results don’t matter as much anymore, having a good, hard paddle is enough for me.
With coaching, it is great to be working with people who not only enjoy paddling, their training and their racing but who also want to go out to perform and continue to develop their skills.
Having been in the sport over 20 years, I feel I have enough experience to help those coming up at the club to help them go on and achieve their goals. Sometimes it’s a lot of work but it is always a pleasure.