Nottingham Spring 2013 – Claire O’Hara Report

Claire O'Hara - Performing a Tricky-woo2013 thus far has been a whirl wind tour jumping from country to country leading up to the 2013 freestyle kayaking world championships. Creeping into June the UK stage of preparation is coming to a close and in less than a week I fly to America for the final stage of training before the big event.

Over the past three weeks I have based myself at the National Water Sport Centre in Nottingham, arguably one of the best training grounds in the world. I have been working closely with my coach Denis Newton (Sweetwater Coaching) and training along-side extremely talented paddlers including international athletes Jason Searle (NZ) and Maria Lindgren (SWE). It has been a very productive few weeks.

My return to Nottingham brought new focus. Under the guidance of Den I poured everything I’ve got into technical development, fine tuning existing skills and developing new ones. In this short amount of time I have significantly boosted my repertoire of available (competition ready) moves. I arrived in Nottingham with the goal of honing my Space Godzilla’s and Phoenix Monkeys to a higher level of competitive confidence. Not only did I achieve this goal but I surpassed my expectations opening up the Tricky Wu and Lunar Orbit two extremely technical and difficult moves to master.

Challenging myself with these new moves has allowed Den to work with me on many technical, tactical, psychological and physiological skills vital to my performance at the upcoming world championships. Motivated by Den and the local paddlers Bren, Brandon and Rob I have also pushed my boating to a new level trying crazy new combos and links a major step in making my style more adaptive and flowing.

If you haven’t yet had coaching I would highly recommend it. The difference it can make to your paddling is out of this world. In the 5 days I have spent with Den I have improved more than in the last 6 months of just boating full time!

Looking back on the past three weeks I can see a dramatic improvement and a newly restored confidence to my paddling. Thanks to Den and all the dedicated paddlers who have helped me stay positive and focused on attaining my goals you helped make them a reality.

Here’s a quick highlights video showcasing the best of the action from my time here at HPP.