This Q&A was with Shona Chan Wai Kay, National Athlete – Dragon Boat Team Singapore.
NAME: Shona Chan Wai Kay
BIRTHPLACE: Clementi, Singapore
TRAINING COMMITMENT: Full-time
POSITION: National Athlete
PADDLING SIDE: Left
MEDAL RECORD: DBS Marina Regatta 2014 – Two-time Bronze Medallist; SEA Games 2013 – Bronze Medallist
National Athlete Shona, used to paddle competitive canoeing in 2010 when she was studying at St. Andrew Junior College. Aside from doing sports, she is also determined to focus on her studies. Currently she’s on her way of gaining her Bachelor’s Degree in Life Science at the National University of Singapore (NUS).
Q: How do you know if there is compatibility between an athlete and the coach?
A: You would know if the goals are aligned. The athlete and the coach may not have the same idea/s, so mainly if the goals are aligned then it will work. If for example, the coach wants to alter a training program or technique, the athlete on the other hand should want to try it for he/she knows that it’s for the best, it’s toward the achievement of a common goal.
Q: In your dragon boating career, did you encounter any major challenge e.g. injury, external restraint, et. al. How did you manage to move on amidst this challenge?
A: Yes I have. I injured my lower back in February of 2014, but it’s not a major injury but it sometimes trigger when I paddle long distances. To keep me moving on, when I joined the N-Team, I had this goal that I want a gold medal from the SEA Games 2015. So from the point that I joined, it was already set that I will stay all the way and we will get the medal.
Q: In your opinion, does it affect the National Athletes’ performance in terms of how they are being compensated?
A: I think it would affect them especially when they are going full-time. Travel expenses is one factor but it is not the most important factor; but, of course, some external help would keep the motivation when at times you feel like there’s nothing inside or losing the spirit and particularly now (interview time) that the trainings are really intense and we do have morning and evening sessions almost everyday.
Photo Credit: Under Armour/Triple Pte. Ltd.
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