Qajaq USA Board Members
"My Greenlandic experience started a few years ago with meeting a big bearded guy on the Hudson River who extolled the virtues of a strange skinny wooden paddle he was using, while leaving me in his wake. When I finally caught up with him at the dock he invited me to join him at the Hudson River Greenland Festival. At HRGF I saw a bearded guy in a neoprene suite doing the most elegant rolls I had ever seen. I met another bearded guy who invited me out for a paddle on the Hudson River with a skinny stick. Finally, I met another rather unusual bearded character with dreads and dressed in all black. He had Greenland Ropes strung in the trees and encouraged me to try. As they say, the rest is history"!
As a former gymnast, Dave was drawn to the ropes as they are quite similar to exercises on parallel bars and the high bar. Seeking venues to gain more experience, Dave started attended the Michigan Training Camp and the Delmarva Retreat in Delaware. As a former coach and teacher Dave found a new avenue for his passion of helping others learn and improve. Although the ropes were actually his entry and forte, Dave is now improving his roll due to helpful coaching by Qajaq USA mentors. "Yes, finally Dave does water!"
"Although many others have helped me learn and improve, I would like to recognize and thank a few key mentors (most, but not all with beards!): Ed Lamon, for showing me the skinny stick and taking me to HRGF; Jack Gilman, for inviting me paddling on the river and introducing me to Training Camp and Delmarva; Dubside, for being my ropes mentor and for constantly pushing me to use the Greenlandic language; Freya Hoffmeister, for getting me in a tuilik and teaching me my first roll; Cheri Perry and Turner Wilson, for being patient with me in overcoming my underwater demons; and finally Dan Segal, for always getting me to get back to the basics and the mantra: "Now, do it slower."
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