Hey! I’m Elliott (the guy in the kayak) and I started this blog out of a passion for all things water sports-related. As an ex-professional international canoe slalom athlete of 5 years, I wanted to share my knowledge, tips and tricks with fellow canoeists and kayakers of all levels – and this seemed like the perfect way to do it.
From paddling since the age of 12 to competing as part of the Irish senior canoe slalom team, I’ve spent most of my life on the water. Maybe even over the 10,000 hour mark (which is considered the point when you reach mastery).
So I know what those cold, early mornings are like. Days when you haven’t beaten your time. Or when you’ve misjudged that waterfall. And no doubt you do too.
But as long as you’re still smiling at the end of it, that’s all that matters. Because canoeing and kayaking are anything but boring.
Anyway, here’s a little more about me.
How I got into kayaking
I got my first taste for paddle sports when I was in Cubs and Scouts. We’d paddle on lakes and I actually passed my BCU 1 Star. A couple of years later a family friend who’d done slalom as a junior wanted to get back into the sport. So he found a local canoe club and suggested I give it a try too.
I joined their weekly sessions with several other beginners – little did we know what we’d let ourselves in for.
Eventually it led me down the route of canoe slalom where I began to compete up and down the UK. I went from training once a week to professionally twice a day for 6 days a week, which ranked me in the UK’s top 20.
I remember my dad refusing to let me play rugby because he didn’t want to spend his Sundays standing on a wet and windy touchline for 90 minutes.
He travelled further, spent more money and more time to let me canoe. Cheers dad.
Luckily within those 12 years I got to swap out the British weather for something sunnier – travelling to places like Brazil and Macedonia, and spending most of my summers in Central Europe.
These days I just paddle recreationally for the love of the sport. But whether you’re doing it professionally or just for fun, being part of this incredible community is about sharing knowledge and helping each other out.
So I hope this blog inspires you and helps you on your journey to becoming a better paddler.
See you on the water.