I just remembered a really poignant moment from my first clinic. I’d been working hard, trying to get a roll. The more I tried, the worse it seemed to get. I swam meat grinder three or four times in a row, hiking my boat back up to it over and over. I was tired and sore, not only from missing the roll but also from hitting my ass so hard on a rock that I lost my bootie. We jokingly changed the name of the rapid to "bootie grinder."
Frustrated, I dragged my boat to the shore and sat there watching everyone else. When a local boater, Terry Ratliff, approached me to ask what I was doing, I grumbled to him about how much I sucked. He was straightforward in his reply:
"Girl, if you're not swimming, you're not trying. Get your little ass back out there!"
So, I did. And I felt better. And I ALWAYS think about that when I'm struggling on the river.
This little anecdote was given to me by BWA member-at-large, Brandy Jones, after I admitted to her that I was having a hard time writing a clinic blog.
I wanted to say something about clinic. I wanted to say a lot of things, actually. Clinic isn't just an introduction to whitewater kayaking. It's an introduction to a lifestyle.
Through working with new boaters at roll classes, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know a lot of you. You’ve asked