My paddling definitely went through a number of phases:
In the beginning of my paddling:
I recognized that kayaking was not a hobby or a sport but a lifestyle
I was finished playing one competitive sport and needed something new to do.
I rafted the Ocoee and wanted to learn what “those” people [the ones in the kayaks] were doing.
It sure looked simple yet I soon found out that it took time to master the skills
In the middle stage of my paddling:
I wanted to become as good as I could as quickly as I could.
I tried to get out in my boat 4-5 days a week
I tried to be super competitive with other females I paddled with.
I wanted to be the best.
I consider myself a very solid boater-but do other sports (mainly biking) also.
I am not too concerned about being competitive anymore.
I am much more concerned with being a smooth, solid, confident boater
I enjoy being on the water but who I am boating with makes the day!
Kayaking is still part of my lifestyle though!
How do I feel about there being more women paddlers now?
I think it is awesome to see so many female paddlers now.
Lots of times I just wanted to paddle with females and I had no one to go with. I had to go with the boys. Now, I have more female paddling buddies and it is great! We share similar experiences, feelings, etc… and can relate to one another. The synergy created by a group of women paddlers is untouchable!