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2019 Elite Female Slalom Athlete Grant Recipient
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Congratulations to Ria Sribar, 2019 recipient of the Elite Female Slalom Athlete Grant. The grant, made possible by the Shannon Christy Memorial Foundation, recognizes a US female slalom athlete who showed exceptional commitment to their sport in 2018.


Ria plans to use this funding to offset part of the cost of a VO2 Master mask. This mask is a wearable, easy to use Bluetooth VO2 monitor, which would enable coaches and athletes to view data coming from this mask in real time simply by looking at a cell phone. For those who may not know, "VO2 max, also known as maximal oxygen uptake, is the measurement of the maximum amount of oxygen a person can utilize during intense exercise." This is a crucial element in developing training for athletes and seeing how the athletes improve over time. This mask allows athletes to get tested more regularly, and in real scenarios such as on white water. In addition to getting tested, athletes can wear this mask on a regular training basis to see how they are progressing or if they are not recovering well. Furthermore, this mask is sharable, with washable airway parts and removable filters, making it very safe and sanitary to switch between athletes. I would like to share this product with other members of the national team in an effort to make us all better athletes. I believe that with this new technology, the US team and I will be able to train smarter and become better and stronger athletes. 


One of the requirements for the recipient of this grant is to give back to the paddling community. Ria plans to set up a clinic on the South Fork of the American River in California, with the Coloma Lotus Junior Kayak Team.

"These kids really love to paddle, for this club was created by parents whose children all shared a love for the outdoors, more specifically rivers. As in almost any sport, to be good at kayaking you have to truly enjoy it. While I am all for getting these kids into racing and training as soon as possible, I believe that if they do not fully appreciate kayaking, without all the competition and rewards that come with winning competitions, they will not stick to kayaking for long. The truth is, I love this sport more than anything, but it's easy to get consumed by the pressure to perform and to constantly get better. Sometimes, it is hard to find simple pleasure in just feeling the water under your boat. That is why I would focus this clinic mostly on just running rivers, having fun, and enjoying everything that this sport has to offer. This way, those who want to start to compete will be really committed, and those who don't want to be competitive athletes will still be life long fans of kayaking."


Please join us in wishing Ria the best of luck as she pursues her racing goals for the 2019 season.



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