Alanna Bray-Lougheed

Canadian Sprint Kayaker

I grew up in the town of Oakville, Ontario in a small house on a quiet street. I have lived in the same home for 24 years, or as long as I have been alive! It is a true home base. Growing up, my mother enrolled me in many different sports and extra-curricular activities- swimming, dance, tennis, softball, piano. I did all of these activities either after school or through a summer camp. One summer, after purchasing a canoe for our cabin and not knowing how to paddle it, my mother signed me up for a Canoe Kids program at the Burloak Canoe Club with the hopes of me picking up the basic skills needed to go forwards and backwards in the boat. 14 years later and I am still paddling, only now I am in a kayak competing for Canada. 

 In 2012, after taking a year off after high school to focus on training, I decided to go to University of Ottawa for a degree in biology. I thought that Ottawa would be a great place to go to continue training at a high level while completing a University degree. After 8 months, I realized that this choice was not the right one for me. I was not in the program that was leading me to my ideal career, and I was not getting the most out of the training environment. 

 In the fall of 2013 I moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia. I transferred to Mount Saint Vincent University in the Applied Human Nutrition program, with the dream of becoming a Registered Dietitian. I also began training with other members of the canoe kayak national team at the Cheema Aquatic Club. I finally felt like I was in the right place for me to become my best self: a fast kayaker and a student studying something I really enjoyed.

 Since then, I have qualified for two U23 World Championships, Senior World Championships, become a member of the senior national team, and won numerous National medals. I have also completed most of my degree and have taken the necessary steps in order to become a dietitian. 

 Although I live and train in Halifax for most of the year, I still am very much rooted in Oakville at the Burloak Canoe Club and I like to get back there to paddle as much as I can.