WAIS Coaches Announcement

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Andrew Crothers and Demi O’Brien to the roles of WAIS Sprint Kayak Pathways Coach (part-time) and WAIS ParaCanoe Coach (part-time).

Andrew Crothers – WAIS Sprint Kayak Pathways Coach

Andrew became involved in coaching about 5 years ago at Bayswater Paddlesports Club (BPC) after coming into paddling through the Avon Descent and then Downwind, bringing a passion to get better and learn all there is to know about our amazing sport. He has done a tremendous job building the BPC program up to a very high standard and the program is the main feeder program into the successful WAIS Sprint Program.

In 2020 Andrew was named the Australian Club Coach of the year by Paddle Australia. Andrew was the WAIS/BPC Talent Identification coach in 2020/21 and was able to instill a love of paddling into this group which, in just 18 months, is showing some really promising results at a National level. He has also coached Internationally for the East Java Kayak Sprint Squad for the Indonesian (PON) Games and has a vast array of experience of coaching across all disciplines from juniors to masters.

His main passion is a genuine love for helping people become better paddlers and getting others involved in paddling.

Demi O’Brien – WAIS ParaCanoe Coach

Demi has been in the kayaking community for just over 15 years. In this time she has competed at an international level in both Sprint and Wildwater and at a national level in Slalom and Surf. She has competed in a number of World Cup and World Championship events and in 2019 Demi competed at the Under 23 Wildwater World Championships and won a Bronze medal in the sprint team event.

Her interest in coaching began with a desire to give back to the sport and people that had become an extended family over the years. She started coaching under the supervision of Amanda Simper and Zlatan Ibrahimbegovic. In 2018 she travelled to the International Paracanoe Conference as she was interested in Paracanoe. Shortly after returning, the WAIS Paracanoe program began to take form and Demi took the chance to work with the athletes. Since then, Demi has travelled to France to complete a Paracanoe Coaching Course and then travelled to England to work with some of the British athletes and coaches.

Demi will continue to work with the state Paracanoe athletes at the development and high-performance levels, and hopes to watch the program continue to grow.