With demand increasing considerably in our Trip programmes, Gene17Kayaking has recently started to develop new coaches and add them to our team when ready. One of the new graduates to our coaching staff is Tomo Andrassy. A renowned expedition paddler from Slovakia, whose on the Factory Zet Team and is also a Palm Equipment Ambassador. His expertise comes from excelling in performance white water kayaking, with first descents in remote destinations and a national championship title in freestyle. Tomo, has already gained the nickname “coach” for his quieter manner and occasional insightful short comments, and is about to complete his PhD.
Below is his account of his first Piemonte & Ticino season with Gene17Kayaking.
It is Sunday -last weekend of May and I just finished my second Ticino trip with the Gene17 crew. On the way back home, I am thinking about the last couple of weeks. First of all I have to say that I am working with some of the best coaches from all around the world and for sure I am also learning a lot of new stuff while I was coaching others too. Every coach has a different view of things and for me this is one of the biggest advantage of this kayaking operation, everyone can choose best way how to learn. If one point of view is not being the results, then with these guys there is another solution, and another and another. For me, the best way how to improve skill on whitewater and move forward is focusing on fundamental basics of tactics and technique and I really appreciate that other coaches have same point of view. It doesn’t matter if we are sitting on flat water or between class four rapids I know that we are working in the same way and together we really can drive the skill development of every paddler to a new level, is what I like. Not just on the water, also outside I really appreciate teamwork of crew and the paddlers on the trips. Not just helping but also be a part of everyday solutions for what is going on to make the trips more like guiding a group of my friends through these full on weeks. This is especially so, during the road trips where we are staying together and to have a really good atmosphere in the group makes for an enjoyable week.
Last two road trips were held in Ticino – a Swiss whitewater paradise – which is one of the best spots for coaching and learning . For me this is one of the top paddling destination in Europe. Mighty Verzasca valley is most beautiful part of this region. I could spend on the three section on this river almost all week with all the great lines to enjoy. Countless boofing action, nice rapids with slides between big boulders and crystal clear water is perfect for training and improving skills for every kayaker developing kayaker. Ease warm up sections on the top of this valley are slowly moving to clean class 4/5 rapids on the bottom of the river. I really enjoy coaching especially on this lower section where I could see our paddlers discussing about the lines, boof strokes and what to do when something goes wrong. Also ice cream as reward after good paddling session on the shore of Lago Maggiore is one of the highlights of this area. More or less this is one of my best jobs. Not just because of this river or area but mainly because of people with I am working and who I am coaching. I really looking forward for more trips like this with great Gene17 crew and the paddlers that come on their trips.
During the summer, Tomo will join Deb Pinniger in Slovenia, for our Soča all Summer long residence. No doubt we’ll also see him at the Sjoa River Festival, where he has won the Sweet Rumble BoaterX in the past.
We have just opened applications for our August 2015 Next Generation Training course in Norway. Tomo, like Jakub, Jake, Chris and all the Gene17 Coaching team have come through this development programme. Do you wish to be part of the Next Generation?