Posts Tagged ‘Ashleigh Stebbeings’

WBC says goodbye to Taylor True and Joey Tombers after 5 weeks of hard training!!

Monday, July 18th, 2011

Joey & Taylor at Holtzy's Invitational

When Taylor and Joey arrived at the World Barefoot Centre they were eager to get on the water and make the most out of the 5 weeks that they were spending here to train over the summer. With the tournament season just about to start, they needed to be focused and train hard to give themselves the best possible chance of moving towards their goal to qualify for the 2012 World Championships.

Joey

Here’s what Joey had to say about his time at the World Barefoot Centre. “WBC is a wonderful place, both on the water and off. I learned so much in the five weeks I was there. When I first arrived I could barely get up backwards, now I can do line step one foot, one foot reverse, hop and both back toe holds.  All this wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the awesome coaching by some of the top skiers and you can’t forget Swampy, the best coach you could have. They pushed me to do the very best I could. I had so much fun skiing with WBC and I can’t wait until I come back down next time.”

Taylor

They both worked really hard to get where they have and also had a great attitude towards training and it has shown with the scores that they posted in the first two tournaments of the season. Joey’s personal bests went from 900 in tricks to 1,330 and he increased his jump from 7.7 to 9 metres. He also went from doing forwards two foot slalom crosses to solidly doing both one foot crosses forwards and also one foot crosses backwards. Taylor’s personal bests went from 320 in tricks to 890 and she increased her slalom score from 3.3 to 4.6. She has also started to consistently get up backwards as well as her forward one foot slalom crosses.

It was great to have them both here and watching them progress as skiers. We are all looking forward to seeing them the next time they come back down to WBC.

– by Ashleigh Stebbeings, Australia

Why is the World Barefoot Center the Best Ski School in the World?

Monday, June 20th, 2011

Every ski school claims that theirs is better then the next one, so why is the World Barefoot Center the best ski school in the world? What really sets this ski school above the rest, is the combination of the top two men in the world for barefoot waterskiing, David Small and Keith St Onge– and their own personal coach, Swampy Bouchard. These three experienced coaches have new training techniques, and have taught hundreds of people to ski from beginners up to the top class skiers in the sport. Every day, they help people to develop their skills further in the sport of barefoot waterskiing.

The proof is in the footin’.   Take a look at the skiers that WBC has produced– to me, the quality of skiing says it all. It’s not just about going out and coaching; they really put their own heart and soul into this sport to make sure that they are getting the best out of each and every skier that comes through the school. It’s a simple concept: the better you are at something, the more fun it is.

Aside from the combination of these great instructors, the World Barefoot Center is in a great location on Lake Rochelle and Lake Conine in Winter Haven, Florida, with access to four lakes when needed. There are three Sanger outboards with 225 Evinrudes on them. These boats stay in both of the lakes, which makes it very convenient to be able to use to them all day, everyday. They are each individually equipped with towers, booms and super fly highs. as well as the best equipment available– which includes US gear handles, KSO shoe skis and  Headzone helmets. This equipment is also available to purchase in the pro shop, which is located onsite and it also has a huge variety of the 2010 and 2011 KSO wetsuit gear as well as WBC and KSO merchandise. The ski school is located between Orlando and Tampa airports, which makes it easy to travel to.

The type of training that you do will depend on the level of the skier. Beginners tend to do shorter sets more frequently so that they can focus on improving their  overall skills.   Advanced skiers do a combination of short, frequent sets and a long set where they get pushed to their limit.

If you would like any more information about the World Barefoot Center, then just visit the website http://www.worldbarefootcenter.com/ or call 863-877-0039.

By Ashleigh Stebbeings, Australia

We Are WBC — Featuring the World Barefoot Center Elite Skiers

Thursday, June 9th, 2011

Five skiers, five National Champions, three World Champions:  Keith St. Onge, David Small, Ben Groen, A.J. Porreca and Ashleigh Stebbeings.  Take a look:

WE ARE WBC from WorldBarefootCenter on Vimeo.

Oh, and somewhere in there, is the Elite Coach, Swampy Bouchard. He keeps them all going.

Featured Footer: Ashleigh Stebbeings

Sunday, May 8th, 2011

When Ashleigh Stebbeings arrived at the World Barefoot Center in January, 2011, she was feeling a bit burned out with barefoot water skiing after ten long years of competition.  The eighteen-year-old first began barefooting when she was eight, and just a year later, she was skiing in the Nationals, representing the Australian Junior Team.

“The first time I put my feet on the water, it was a weird feeling,” Ashley recalled.  “I immediately fell in love with that.”  Within a month, Ashleigh was skiing behind the boat and quickly learned one-foot, tumble turns and handle-in-teeth tricks.    At nine years of age, she was the youngest skier to qualify for the minute badge—skiing backwards.  In 2003, Ashleigh was selected for the Junior team and skied in her first Worlds.  She has skied every World Barefoot Competition since then.   “My greatest achievement took place in 2009—I won slalom, trick and jump—in both the Junior and Open division.  I set a new World record in jump as well,” said Ashleigh.

At the Worlds in Germany, David Small and Swampy Bouchard, approached Ashleigh and invited her to train at the World Barefoot Center.   Ashleigh wasn’t sure what she wanted to do—or if she even had the heart to continue with barefooting.  Back home in Australia, Ashleigh had to drive 40 minutes to her training site, and she found it tiring to continually rearrange her schedule to fit in time on the water.   “I decided to come to the World Barefoot Center to see if I could find the passion again for barefooting,” said Ashleigh.  “I knew that if I couldn’t find it here, then I couldn’t find it anywhere.”

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Getting Pumped for the Summer Barefoot Season

Sunday, April 17th, 2011

The World Barefoot Center gang is getting pumped for the summer barefoot season!  Take a look at the fun on the water, including a couple of faceplants and body slams by Keith St. Onge, Adin Denaker, Ashleigh Stebbeings, A.J. Porreca and Ben Groen:

GETTING PUMPED FOR THE SUMMER SEASON from WorldBarefootCenter on Vimeo.

Fun with Headzone Helmets at the World Barefoot Center

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

Headzone helmets are used frequently at the World Barefoot Center, from beginners to the pros.  Keith St. Onge shares his views on Headzone helments in this post: HeadZone Helmets, Communication in the Water Ski World.   The gang at the World Barefoot Center had some fun on the water with HeadZone Helmets, featuring Ben Groen, David Small, Keith St. Onge, Ben Lafrance, Ashleigh Stebbeings, Adin Daneker, Collin Barber, Travis Carlyle, Shawn Meyer, Christain O’Neill and A.J. Porreca:

Barefoot Water Skiing Crashes and Faceplants

Saturday, April 2nd, 2011

“World Champions are not made overnight.  They have to endure a lot of falls and faceplants to reach success.”

–Coach Swampy Bouchard, World Barefoot Center

Here’s a collection of barefoot crash videos from the World Barefoot Center, featuring some spectacular crashes, falls, tumbles, faceplants and body slams.  You’re guaranteed to cringe:

Barefoot Crashes and Faceplants

Barefooting Crashes

Extreme Barefooting Crashes

Barefooting Crashes and Smashes

The Best Barefoot Crashes

Slips and Trips at WBC

Massive Falls at the WBC Invitational Tournament

Wicked Barefoot Falls

Life at the World Barefoot Center

Friday, April 1st, 2011

What is it like to hang at the World Barefoot Center and receive instruction from the two World Champions?   Here’s a glimpse of life on water with Keith St. Onge and David Small.   (Written by Karen Putz.)

Joann O’Connor and I arrive at the World Barefoot Center early in the morning and meet up with Judy Myers.  Bill Nelson and Gene Burrish arrive.   In the kitchen, the number-one-ranked female, Ashleigh Stebbeings is digging into a bowl of cereal.  World Barefoot Center coach, Swampy, is at the desk in the living room doing some paperwork.  Ben Groen, from New Zealand, is gassing up the boats and getting them ready for the day.

The five of us head out to the dock with Keith St. Onge and we do some stretching exercises to limber up for the day.   We figure out the order of who goes first– I volunteer to go last.  I’m not quite awake yet in the morning.   We toss the gear in the boat and climb in.  Judy Myers puts her head on my shoulder– she’s not quite awake yet either.  Joann looks like she’s full of energy and raring to go.  Gene and Bill look the same way.

It’s not hard to wake up when you see the first skier break out of the water and glide up.  There’s something about barefoot water skiing that fires up that energy inside.  Everyone has a personal trick to work on, and Keith patiently goes through every step.   He’s been teaching since he turned pro at the age of eighteen, but he doesn’t skimp on instruction– he genuinely wants everyone to do their best.  Occasionally, he pulls one of us back in the boat to demonstrate step-by-step what he wants us to improve on.   Every time someone reaches a personal goal or accomplishes a skill they’re working on, the boat explodes in applause.  Keith will toot the horn to cement the victory.  In my case (I am deaf) the participants have learned to wave their hands in the air and sign “awesome.”

Judy and Joann work on their  back toe holds.  Bill works on his back-to-front.  Gene does some front toe-holds.   I battle the elusive backward deep water start.  All througout the morning sets, Keith tweaks our stance on the water and advises us how to improve each trick.  Shoes go on.  Shoes come off.  The long line goes out.  The short line gets rolled up even shorter.  The Headzone helmet goes on, Keith dons the microphone and gives out step-by-step instructions. Slalom, tumble turns, back deeps, toe holds and turns get churned out in two sets each.   We finally head back to the World Barefoot Center for lunch.  We’ve earned it.

In an afternoon with David Small, there are four of us–Joann, Judy, myself and Jean Marie from France.  David’s dogs, Baloo and Charlie join us in the boat.  Jean Marie goes first–he uncovers the tarp from the jump and runs water over it.  Jean Marie has been a solid jumper for years, but today, he’s determined to conquer the inverted style.   David goes over some tips while Jean Marie cinches the helmet.  His first jumps are tentative, but he slowly builds up confidence and begins to invert– and land them.   Applause goes out each time he lands a jump.  I marvel at Small’z’s driving skills as he navigates the boat alongside the ramp, keeping his eye on Jean Marie at the same time.

Charlie and Baloo hop into my lap and proceed to nap.   I watch as Judy and Joann tear up the water with their footin’ skills.  It’s easy to forget that they’re 62 and 68 years old– they look like 21-year-olds on the water.   Joann skis with a fused ankle, but she doesn’t let it stop her from learning new stuff.   Indeed, these two gals push me along, convincing me each time that I can do what they do.  They remind me to be patient each time frustration builds up and they cheer every time I accomplish something new.   David tells me to count to five after I plant.  The elusive back deep water start finally becomes history as I stand up on the water and ride it out.   The throttle goes back at the end of my run and I sink in the water.  The gang in the boat is signing “awesome” as they idle toward me.  It has taken just seven days of instruction with Keith and David to make it happen.  Not bad for a 45-year-old, I say. 

Jean Marie flies through the air on his second set and we rotate on the water yet again before finally calling it a day.  David powers the boat back to the pier as we peel off the wetsuits.  We’ve been on the water through four sets, and we’re tired, but content.   Keith, however, isn’t ready to call it a day.  He is going to head out and do a few jump sets himself.   I stay in the boat while Ben, Ashleigh and Swampy join in.   Ben heads out to the jump.   This is the first time that Keith has jumped in five months, and the first time that I’ve seen him jump– so I’m fascinated as I watch him close up.   The two-time World Champion still gets his jumps tweaked by Swampy between each jump.   There’s always something to change, something to improve on. 

We finally call it a day and it’s time for dinner.  By the time my head crashes on the pillow a few hours later, I’m sore in a few places, but feeling great.  There’s nothing like skimming on the water on bare feet.  At the World Barefoot Center, they make magic happen on water.  I can’t wait to experience it again.

Radical Barefooting at the World Barefoot Center

Saturday, March 19th, 2011

Just another day on the water at the World Barefoot Center, featuring David Small, Keith St. Onge, Judy Myers, Ashleigh Stebbeings, Ben Groen and Carson Eatman:

RADICAL BAREFOOTING from WorldBarefootCenter on Vimeo.