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I wanted to come to Hawaii for paddle camp because (duh) warm beautiful water, and also because I had been for several oc6 races but never oc1. I really wanted to experience navigating my own canoe in dynamic and challenging conditions, and to have the best help doing it. I also liked the idea of building my vacation around the sport I love - I really can't think of a better way to spend a week!
I wanted to come away from camp a better all-around oc1 paddler - better able to read the water, surf downwind, and take advantage of whatever conditions are present. Even though I had been paddling for 10+ years, I had never really been coached on the oc1, so I wanted the coaching that would help me with technique, finding my power, learning skills like flying the ama, etc. I also wanted coaching from outside my club, and especially from a woman. HOW we paddle is different, and how we talk about paddling is different. It was refreshing and helpful to have a camp just for women. I'd been to clinics taught by men and found my voice wasn't heard, so I was hoping for a setting that helped me to feel more welcome and respected (and I was).
When I came back from camp, I could fly my ama fearlessly, surf downwind more effectively, better managing my strength and energy, and I was suddenly the fastest woman in my club! So the skills and speed translated immediately, and my confidence in challenging conditions grew immensely. I also came back with new drills, strength and tempo workouts, more foundation in structuring my workouts, and I was able to share much of what I learned with others in my club. I was inspired by Anna's easy, straightforward coaching style to become a stronger and more fearless oc1 paddler myself.
When I first met Anna it was in a small group clinic she held at the Gorge Downwind Championships in 2016. The thing about her that connected with me first was her quiet determination to find a way. Nothing is impossible. Something I too believe deeply. It was a small thing (well rather big actually) but I was at the Gorge with a group that was not doing the clinic and paddling elsewhere for the day and somehow a mix-up occurred and I was given the wrong set of iakos for the canoe I was using. Anna didn’t judge or dismiss me as done for the day. She asked around and amazingly got a stranger to let me use his iakos on my canoe for the clinic. This impressed me.
A few days later I raced the big 23 km Gorge Downwind Championships. Still quite new to downwind paddling (coming from a short distance sprint background) I churned out my worst performance ever and I finished dead last. I had read about Anna and her background and discovered that she started racing outrigger she too placed last. Another connection. She could relate and understand what I would need to do to get better. After reading more about Hawaii Paddle Camps and liked that it was small group and I felt this guaranteed a good amount of individual attention due to small student-coach ratio. I also liked that it was all women as we communicate and learn differently and it’s just so empowering to have a group of strong women together doing something they love together. All of these things sounded to me like the magic recipe for learning how to surf, read the water, connect bumps, race better and race faster. And it was.
I signed up and the week was incredible. I learned a lot, did some unforgettably awesome downwind runs (Makai Pier, Hawaii Kai!) as well as out-and-backs and we got a lot of individual attention as well as time to practice skills we learned on our own while she worked with others in the camp.And every day was stunning the camp is held in the most beautiful waters, this amazing scenery alone will breathe life into you daily.
A few months later I raced the Gorge Downwind Championships again, but this year I ended up with a completely different result. While I still have a lot of work to do when comes to reading the water properly and linking runs consistently, I had improved immensely over the previous year and finished far from last. I was also 10+ minutes faster than many paddlers who were faster than me the year before.
Anna connected with me and that helped me learn but I have witnessed that she has a unique ability to connect with all her clients and is able to understand and meet (if not exceed!) their needs and goals. This is what you want in the ideal coach.
I highly recommend Hawaii Paddle Camps. Sign up quick or you may be disappointed as your clinic will sell out!
I’ve been paddling since 1998, and my first trip to Hawaii to paddle was in 2002. No matter how long you have been paddling you are always learning and to have the opportunity to be coached rather than being the coach, have someone focus some time on me and improving how I paddle and how I think about time on the water was what I hoped for. I wanted to paddle in a non-competitive environment with fun like-minded girls in some of the most beautiful water in the World.
I took away the feeling it’s ok to have fun and play while learning and growing as a paddler. There are many different ways of showing or getting a learning experience across and we covered pretty much all of them.
Anna’s caring, encouraging nature saw all of us working on ways of developing our paddling technique and skills, building confidence and setting goals to bigger and better paddling adventures. I wish I could attend Anna’s Hawaii Paddling Camps every year!!!
I wanted to learn more paddling skills and I wanted a great holiday in Hawaii so I decided to come to Hawaii for a paddle camp. First time I joined Annas camp, I had only paddled outrigging for 1,5 years and there where a lot to learn.
During the first paddle camp I learned a lot and I had a lot of fun. Even though I had not been paddling for very long, I decided to train for Maui to Molokai race which Anna helped me plan for. I came back the next year and did two paddle camps to get me ready for the race. I hoped to improve my paddle skills and learn to surf big waves, and I wanted to get ready for races.
Also Anna helped me to build up my race experience in Hawaii, so first race in Hawaii where an OC2 relay with Anna, and then I had a short race before trying M2M. It helped a lot that Anna knows all the races and can guide me to which one matches my experience level.
What I have got from the camps was a lot of skills for surfing. And I got a lot to work on in between camps, because Anna gave me a lot of technical things to improve, and also explained the importance of both training technique, intervals and long distance training.