NEW DIRECTION: Christina Chamley is trying outriggers after an injury in powerlifting. Picture: Stuart Wilson.CURRENT Australian powerlifting champion Christina Chamley, of Burnie, is working hard again this year preparing to compete at the National Championships, but not in powerlifting.
Next month, Chamley will compete at the National Outrigger Marathon Championships in Mooloolaba, Queensland.
After sustaining an injury in powerlifting last year, ending her competitive lifting days, Chamley worked with local exercise physiologist Simon West to recover, and started looking towards another sport to fulfil her training and competition needs.
“Like most of us, I had seen those six-person outrigger canoes training in the bay off Burnie and Somerset,” Chamley said.
“I always thought they looked so good out there enjoying our beautiful Coastline, all paddling in unison.
“I wondered if this was a sport I could have a go at, but I had no prior experience with sea-based sports and neither was I that comfortable in the sea, plus I get seasick too,” she said.
With comprehensive coaching, Chamley was soon paddling confidently in a six-person crew.
“Then about 10 weeks ago I was delighted when they asked me to be part of their squad going to the National Marathon Championships.
“Talk about having motivation to train, I had never done anything like endurance or marathon training before,” she said.
“It is obviously a totally different type of training and sport from the short explosive movements of powerlifting that I am used to.”
The Cradle Coast Outrigger Canoe Club will send an 18-person squad to compete in various races at the championships including composite teams in the under 14 and under 16 divisions, male and female crews, two mixed senior crews, and an all-men’s senior crew.
The club heads to Mooloolaba next month coming off the back of a successful trip to the Sunshine Coast at the National Sprint Championships earlier this year where they won 41 medals.
Anyone interested in finding out more or trying outrigger canoeing should phone Leigh Paine on 0429093662 or visit www.cradlecoastoutrigger. com.au.
This article first appeared in Hangzhou Night Net.