We just finished up another snowboarding nationals here in Breckenridge, Colorado. Kid and adult competitors from all over the country come here to compete in different disciplines. Our kids raced in BoarderX and sent tricks off Slopestyle jumps and rails.
When we first started snowboarding, the kids were little. The three of them would roam together all over mountains in Utah and Colorado as siblings and friends. Now, they have many days of training and competing on snow with their teams and coaches. They’ve become strong, competitive riders. They still love the challenge of learning new tricks and pushing their speed, but mostly just enjoy the entire experience of it all – laughing with friends and great coaches, being on snow with amazing mountain views.
Here’s a recent video Isaac’s Sendy Squad crew shot out at The Launch in Big Bear, California. His crew is very special – best friends who inspire each other. They’ve published several edits throughout the season.
Over the winter, Isaac traveled out to the Rev Tour in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania and competed in slopestyle. He placed somewhere in the middle of the pack of those amazing riders. His crew had a blast night-riding, lapping the park for hours. Isaac had a solid season progressing with tricks, placing 3rd at the Keystone Slope Comp, and even winning first place at the Slash N’ Burn banked slalom in Steamboat!
Gabe has worked on tricks in the park with his coaches and team. He landed a few 720’s and it’s been a fun year to improve. Gabe got into the Rev Tour for BoarderX and raced at Ski Cooper, Crested Butte and at USASA Nationals in open class. He was racing with US National team riders and Olympians. I loved his grit and how he raced mixing it up with extremely talented boardercross men. He chose the harder route and held his own competing. He finished 11th at Nationals advancing out of rounds and placing well in time trials.
Jadyn had a great season as well! Her team mostly focuses on Slopestyle, and she has been working on her 360’s this year – all four approaches, but everyone knows she is a speedy racer. She traveled to Super Girl at Big Bear in California and got silver in boardercross there. She also represented Frisco, CO and was sent with a delegation to compete at the International Children’s Games in Lake Placid, NY winning a silver in slopestyle and gold in boardercross. Yesterday, she had a stellar, marquis performance in a highly packed group for her 12-14 girls boardercross USASA Nationals race. She advanced through the rounds in first place each time, and ended up with a second place finish in finals! Her first medal at Nationals in the 5 years she’s been competing! Our family was floored at her performance. Poised, focused and fast. We are still coming off our adrenaline from the intensity and drama, but she is definitely at a new level of racing with her riding.
Launching and Loving
When we left six years ago from Austin, TX for our Freejourner adventures, Sonya and I could not have predicted this path. We are 5 snowboarders now with nationally competitive kids. I am grateful for Summit County, the culture and the people, and for Team Summit which has been a major part of our experience. I am grateful for the families we have come to call friends and the coaches who deeply care and hone their craft in training them to be high level, “whole” athletes. Matt Voegtle, Josh Underwood, Terri Hunter and others have devoted so much to our kids – we are forever grateful.
It really does take an immense amount of energy, resources and focus. The kids have to balance their academics, rest, health and injuries.
I love how dialed in the kids are. They each have a different personality and approach the pressure with soberness and focus.
I care about how they develop with learning how to win, being leaders of themselves and others, and having courage. We talk about such pressures in our car rides to and from the mountains. We laugh, pray and connect around dinners. The kids know the standards Sonya and I have towards being clear, strong and kind. We want them to be fully engaged.
They are teenagers now and making their own decisions and are learning how rewards and consequences work. I am proud of them.
I have been thinking of Psalm 127:3, “Children are a heritage from the Lord,
offspring a reward from him.”
Sonya and I are living these wonderful days with our teen kids and seeing all those years of work and love play out. It’s so fulfilling and joyful. It’s humbling how quickly it passes and how challenging each day can be. But they are getting ready to launch. I cheer them on and know that they have all these experiences in their heart with the love of their mom and dad helping them. I see them choose hard things, a mantra of our family, and learn to overcome.
I often tell people that, “Our kids are all we’ve got.” In our older age, that is becoming crystal clear. I can’t relive those days when they were little. They are over, but will always be a part of them.
I want to have no regrets and launch kids with full hearts and memories. They are choosing courage, kindness and success for themselves. I have joy each day watching and learning from them.