As with any sport, to get the maximum out of a training session it can be useful to have a coach around to offer helpful advice and information.

The GB team has some fantastic coaches who help and support the athletes, both while training UK and competing abroad. All of these coaches however also are available to help those new to the sport. If it is a one off introduction to freestyle training session or a whole series of sessions to aid your journey down the freestyle pathway these guys and girls will be able to help.

Dennis Newton runs Sweetwater Coaching. Dennis is a UKCC level 5 coach, has a BSc in Sports and Exercise and years of coaching experience. He has served as a performance coach and consultant for multiple national freestyle teams forming successful partnerships that have achieved European and World titles. He also works closely with the British Canoe Union as a technical advisor on freestyle and white-water coaching, performance and leadership programmes. See for more info.

Sam Ward and Emily Wall run the coaching company Love It Live It. Sam has many thousands of hours of coaching on all styles and grades of white water. He now lives coaching and kayaking at the highest level in some of the top destinations around the world – loving it and living it. Since 2009 Sam has been an official GB Freestyle Team Coach, and has coached at both the World and European Championships, helping the british athletes bring in 25 medals in a variety of disciplines. Emily is currently on the K1W GB Freestyle team but when she isn’t training also coaches freestyle across the globe. Emily is a past European Champion and World Championships Chief Judge so certainly knows her stuff! 

Andy ‘Jacko’ Jackson has been coaching paddlesport and freestyle for longer than many of the GB Team have been paddling! In the last few years Jacko has been heavily involved in the success of both the GB and Spanish Freestyle Teams. Jacko runs the youth performance program “Young Burners” which aims (and has achieved on many occasions) to develop junior paddlers into international medal winners through a structured training plan which covers all aspects of competition. Many of the UK’s top freestyle paddlers have come through the Young Burners program. Jacko is a UKCC Level 5 so whether it is a rolling clinic or a full support program you require, Jacko and his coaching team will be able to help.

Lowri Davies is a highly experienced Level 5 coach who has been a member of the GB Freestyle Kayak team a number of times since 2001. She is a former European Champion and part of the British Canoeing Technical Panel which creates technical awards (e.g. the Star Awards). When Lowri isn’t training for the next European or World Championships she is a full time professional coach, working around the world with all levels of paddlers. Lowri and her team offer coaching courses, individual skill sessions, trips and experiences in both white water paddling and freestyle including female specific coaching.

A well rounded competitor will be strong in four main aspects of a sport in equal balance; technical, tactical, physiological and psychological. Jonathan Males represented Australia at four World Canoeing Championships, and coached medal winners on the Australian and British teams across the last six Olympic Games including London 2012. Due to his love for paddlesport; Jonathan also coaches the GB freestyle team on the psychological aspects of the sport. Our medal success over the last few years may not of happened without this valuable aspect. See for more information.

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