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Staring Amy Whitaker in an @pinkwater.c production

Posted by Amy Whitaker on

PINK WATER – EAU VIVE AU FÉMININ – Posted by Amy Whitaker, a WaterFlow instructor

Hello WaterFlow blog followers! For those of you that don’t know me, my name is Amy Whitaker and I am an instructor here at WaterFlow. Growing up in the UK, my love for kayaking started at 13 years old. Ever since then, my life has revolved around kayaking and canoeing in some capacity. I started instructing at 16 years old which set the stage for travelling to many different countries with my kayak. I currently reside in Squamish, BC where I juggle multiple jobs and career paths, including working as an instructor for WaterFlow, being an Engineer and working wilderness expeditions as an instructor with NOLS and local Vancouver area schools.

Amy Whitaker dropping inGetting ready to drop onto the Arcand wave

Growing up paddling, I was often the only girl. Paddling in the Lower Mainland over the last seven years, I have loved paddling and building comradery with female paddlers here. While I love teaching everyone, there is something extra special about passing on knowledge to other females and watching their confidence grow on and off the river as they progress through the sport. Recently, I had an incredible opportunity to attend the first Ambassador Event for Pink Water in Quebec. In June, approximately 25 women and 1 man were selected by the founders of Pink Water to meet in Lac St Jean, Quebec. Each of us came from diverse paddling backgrounds: raft guiding, instructional, and guiding and recreational. Even the Canadian National Women’s rafting team was present! For the previous three years, Pink Water has run an inclusive (all levels of experience welcome) whitewater event for women in Quebec. Pink Water has tracked the increase of female paddlers within the local clubs since this event has been running and the results are encouraging. While brainstorming, we focused on how to expand the Pink Water movement and discover paddler’s wants and needs. The weekend was spent paddling the beautiful Métabetchouan River, surfing the Arcand wave on the Ashuapmusuan River, doing yoga SUP, and mountain biking to support participants in pushing themselves of their comfort zones!

Everyone on the Ashuapmusuan River

Pink Water identifies three core values:
1. Solidarity – Promote that rivers are accessible to women who share a mentality that is true to women on the river.
2. Push one’s limits – Encourage physical activity and to push one’s personal limits.
3. Cooperation - To grow and to become distinguished allies in order to develop long term collaborations in this niche market.

The way I like to sum up Pink Water is, “A movement trying to empower women in whitewater”. With the right support and education, the river is a place for everyone and Pink Water would like to empower all paddlers to support new women in the sport.

Pink Water swagPsyched on our Pink Water swag

So what now? As the only ambassador from the West Coast of Canada to attend, I now need your help! I am looking to collaborate with other people to help implement ideas and provide insight as to Pink Water’s fit in our community. If you share similar values and are interested in empowering women through whitewater, give me a shout at amy.whitaker@hotmail.com! Lastly I’d like to thank Pink Water for inviting me to the Ambassador Event, all the sponsors who made the event possible, and WaterFlow Paddling for allowing me to share my experience. For more information on Pink Water, please check out their website at http://pink-water.ca/en
Instagram: @pinkwater.c
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/communautepinkwater/

Cheers,
Amy Whitaker

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