Building Young Paddlers

By Vatapuia Maiava ,

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SUPER EXCITED: Group all ready to paddle.

SUPER EXCITED: Group all ready to paddle.

The Digicel Extraordinary Women Challenge (D.E.W.C) buzz is still real with this week’s sport being outrigger canoeing.

The girls were treated to an exciting tournament with assistance of the Nafanua Alo PaoPao group giving paddling tips and making sure everything goes smoothly.

Speaking to the Samoa Observer was Ariane Stevenson from Samoa Women in Sports Challenge (S.W.I.S.C) who spoke a little on the tournaments.

“The outrigger canoeing is the 3rd sport in the D.E.W.C. We’ve already completed the athletics section (5km run) and shot put. The Lawn bowls was suspended due to the rain and so this week we have the canoeing,” she said.

“The girls have been training throughout the week and for most of them this is a new sport so today’s races are just time trials where they do individual 200m courses.

“The results in today’s tournament will place them in the overall placing of D.E.W.C.”

At this point in the competition Ariane was happy to say that everything was going smoothly.

“Everything is going really well in regards to how the girls are doing with all the sports. The girls are really enjoying trying sports that they haven’t had the opportunity to try before,” she said.

“The lawn bowling is a great example of that; a lot of them thought that it was a really boring sport that only old people play but then they got trained under some of our lawn bowls leaders here in Samoa such as Fiu and his team.

“The girls really enjoyed it and they are considering it as a sporting option. The lawn bowls association is really happy with that and I’m sure the same will go with the paddling today.”

After speaking to some of the girls taking part in the challenge they admitted that canoeing is the sport they were most excited about.

Ariane feels that this may change when it comes to their next exciting sport which is next week’s squash tournament.

“I guess it depends where the girl’s personal preferences lie; people enjoy paddling because they get to go out in the water,” Ariane said.

“Even though some of them can’t swim they feel comfortable being in a safe environment where they can try out this new sport.

“Next week we will be moving to squash so who knows. They might love squash a lot more than this.”

Ariane concluded with a word of thanks to all those who have helped make these games possible.

“I just want to say thank you to our sponsors who have been there the whole time. Their interest’s lies within our juniors through supporting sports development of our young women,” she said.

“As far as we are concerned the event has been a great success and we hope it continues to be so until the end of the challenge in 2 weeks time.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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