Sky’s the Limit

Mantra 7. Embrace Expectations : Aim for the highest cloud”  – All Blacks

Our camps by the numbers:

  • 17 Days
  • 370 Miles
  • 52.9 Hours
  • 680 Tacks Completed
  • 510 Gybes Completed
  • 660 Accelerations Completed
  • 300 Sets and Douses Completed
  • 5 days sailing in the Atlantic Ocean’s Gulf Stream
  • 2 Regattas Raced! – 2 x Silver Medals Collected!
  • 1 New Affiliate Sponsor Added to the Skiff Squad – Welcome WHOOP!!

After training for 6 weeks over the course of the last two months in Miami, Florida, our last domestic training block is in the books! Within a 33 day period, we sailed for 17 days and really pushed to maximize our time with our U.S. Skiff Squad and Coach Mark Asquith in some very light and challenging conditions. Overall, our last training block was sailed in very light off-shore, gradient breezes with the wind ranging from 3-9 knots. We raced two great events at the 2Niner Next Generation Winter Series Event and the 2021 West Marine Miami Open where we placed 2nd! at both which continues to show our consistency and improvement in our light air boat speed and handling, but leaves us hungry for more!

This last block of training gave us the opportunity to Embrace Expectations, or in other words, continue to set the bar higher and higher each training day. With this being the last domestic training block before our Skiff Squad sends it to Europe to race against some of the worlds best, we were looking to maximize our time and energy on the water and squeeze as much as we could from each opportunity. We are dreaming big when it comes to our goals at the end of the year and in order for us to reach our goals, we have been setting high expectations both on and off the water. Of course, the higher the goals and expectations, the greater the risk of failure, but for us, its all about taking the hits as they come, looking to embrace the fear of failure and use it to motivate our next performance.

Speaking of Big Dreams and Expectations, our Squad has taken a big step in forming a great new partnership with the up and coming brand WHOOP! WHOOP has been playing a huge role in our Squad’s day to day lives and it is an awesome opportunity for us to be affiliated with their brand. Some of the biggest ways that WHOOP has helped us are the following:

  • Squad Health Tracking
    • We are able to have peer to peer monitoring in our Skiff Squad WHOOP Team where we have a “healthy” competition to challenge each other to have the highest strains, best recoveries and longest sleep scores on a daily basis
    • More importantly, WHOOP has become a huge Early COVID-19 Prevention Tool for our Squad, which has been critical in keeping all of us safe and reducing the spread of COVID-19. More often then not, the Squad knows how you feel, before you do!
  • Training, Travel, Testing
    • Since Sailing is a constantly changing environment, we have been able to use WHOOP to better understand how to achieve an optimal performance over the course of a training week and learn to create good recovery habits to be best prepared for the next day of sailing
    • On long travel days, think driving for 4 days straight from San Diego to Miami twice!, WHOOP has been vital in getting us ready for a sailing block sooner by keeping us on track with our personalized daily sleep needs and forcing us to prioritize our recovery. How often do you finish a travel day and feel exhausted and wonder why?
    • A large portion of sailing is all about equipment testing, and now with our WHOOP bands, we are finally able to test the human element and look to get the most out of our bodies as well as our boats!

If you’re interested in learning more about your personal health and body and would like to start tracking data as it relates to your Sleep (quality, duration, consistency), Strain (internal load from external stress), and Recovery (readiness to perform) our squad is now able to give you a special discounted price on WHOOP Bands! Get your WHOOP discount by following our unique link here!

We would like to give a big thank you to the United States Sailing Center in Miami and specifically, Pat Downey, for hosting us over the last 4 months. We truly appreciate all the help and support and how open and welcoming the U.S. Sailing Center Staff has been to allowing all of the U.S. 49er Teams to come train as a Squad. We all had a fantastic time and look forward to coming back in next winter! Thank you to our U.S. squad coach, Mark Asquith, for spending the time to fly all the way to Florida from the U.K. to coach our squad and really push us to focus on the small and Big! things that are going to move us to the next level in our sailing! We would like to thank the U.S. Sailing Team for all the logistical help and support in making this camp happen. We would not have been able to do this without you! Thank you! We would like to thank the Force Physical Therapy Team and Staff, and specifically to Chris Ellis and Micah Kust, for hosting our squad to numerous physical therapy sessions and continuing to keep us and our squad injury free and recovered for all of our on the water training. We can not thank you enough! Finally, we would like to thank the St. Francis Sailing Foundation for helping keep the lights on, the engine running and the dream alive! Thank you so much!

Now! We are off to Europe! Our first stop will be on the small Canary Island, off the coast of Africa, called Lanzarote where we will compete in our first international event as a new team! We are stoked to get after it and represent the United States, and the U.S. Skiff Squad at the highest level! Looking to be #inthegreen when we land! Stay tune for more updates and photos! throughout the next couple weeks both on facebook, @barrowshenkenracing, and on instagram, @hanshenken, #49erUSSkiffSquad and @us49ersquad.

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