Skiing lesson with Charlotte Evans MBE – Paralympic Gold Medallist

Kit Shack recently ran a competition to win a skiing lesson with Charlotte Evans, British skier and sight guide Paralympian.  We talked to Charlotte and competition winner Jade Shields after their day together.

Charlotte Evans won the English Champion title in 2009 before becoming a sight guide in 2010. Charlotte and her partner Kelly Gallagher won Britain’s first ever Winter Games Gold medal in Skiing. In 2014 Charlotte was awarded an MBE for her services to Paralympic Sport.

Jade Shields (29) is from Surrey and works in the Super Yachting industry as a stewardess. Jade has just finished a ski season in Val D’Isere. It was her second snow season having done one in Andorra in 2012.

Jade says “I started skiing in Andorra but didn’t ski at all between the end of the first season and start of the second! I’m comfortable on blue runs and some reds but sometimes challenge myself on black runs. I would class myself as still beginner/intermediate level.”

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Like Jade, lots of people are serious about their skiing but have limited free time to train. Charlotte’s advice is “try and make sure you stay fit and any evening you get free, go to your local dry slope as skiing on there is better than nothing.”

After the lesson Jade said “The aspect of my skiing that I felt most improved was my stance. I was able to gain confidence in leaning forward and body positioning. This improved my speed, balance and also helped with my confidence. The most enjoyable part was the final runs where Charlotte and I were synchronised slalom skiing.”

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We asked Charlotte about the dynamics of skiing as a pair. “Skiing as a pair is still individual but there are two of us in one team. Trust is vital and takes time to get, but once you have the trust it is easier to push the speeds and limits.”

Charlotte believes the characteristics that have led to her success are that she is very patient, competitive and a good listener. “My next goal is undecided yet. However everything I have done so far has been incredible and a lot of fun so would like to keep fun and being happy as a priority.”

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We asked Jade what advice she would give to others considering taking up skiing as adults. “Skiing is a fantastic sport allowing you to explore some amazing scenery in various resorts around the world. Have lessons, stick with the sport even when you feel you’re not improving. Skiing is a challenging sport but maybe the next pro hasn’t even started to learn yet!”

Kit Shack is a specialist retailer of Buff products.

Mother and Daughter Kayaking Adventure

The winners of this year’s Sean Conway Adventure Scholarship are mother and daughter Addi and Athina (age 8). Together they will be kayaking down the Leeds-Liverpool canals, a distance of 127 miles (204km), which they expect to take 6 days.

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The kayaking trip is part of a year of adventures that will also include a half marathon, an iron man, and a Mini Olympics for schools. They have even arranged an international Mini Olympics at a school while they are on holiday in Madrid! For their kayak-swim challenges, Athina will sit inside the kayak and give support along the way.

Team AA hope to create a world where more children can be introduced to the benefit of sport, as well as raising funds for the Jane Tomlinson appeal.

They are fantastic role models and are sure to inspire young people with their active lifestyle. We can’t wait to see more of their adventures! Follow them on their Team AA website and blog, and on twitter @Ourgreatproject.

 

 

 

 

Sarah Outen – cycling, rowing and kayaking around the world!

Back in April 2011 Sarah Outen set out from Tower Bridge on her London2London: Via the World expedition. Her goal was to row, bike and kayak around the northern hemisphere, inspiring children and fundraising for charities.

Reading about her journey is so inspiring, in everything I have read about Sarah, she comes across as totally down to earth and really relateable which is so cool to see. I have no doubt she has inspired a lot of individuals young and old to take on their own challenges.

One of the best things – Sarah believes anyone could do it too according to her interview with Cooler before she finished! I loved her comment:

“You get to meet wildlife on its own terms. You’re not a big scary noisy vehicle that’s going to run it over. You’re right up close and personal in it. You’re not intimidating on a bicycle. You’re just a bit tired and smelly. People really connect with that,  it’s really powerful.”

Sarah completed her journey on the 3rd November 2015 arriving back in London, England after 1676 days, 23 hours, 25 minutes and 0 seconds – that’s 4.5 years covering over 25000 miles! Her book ‘Dare to Do’ about her expedition will be out in May 2016.

You can read the full interview with Cooler here.

Visit Sarah Outen’s website click here.

National Geographic Adventure: 2016 Adventurer of the Year Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita

An amazing and very inspiring article written by Mary Anne Potts about National Geographic’s 2016 Adventurer of the Year – Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita.

Pasang grew up in Lukla, Nepal, in the shadow of Everest. By the time she was 15, she’d lost both her parents and was left to care for her six-year-old sister. Still, she made her way up the world’s tallest peaks (K2 and Everest, to name a few) and has continued to work tirelessly to serve the disadvantaged in the aftermath of the April 2015 earthquake in Nepal.

Read the full story and interview with Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita on National Geographic.