Name: Jake Jensen
How many years have you been stand up paddling and what were the main reasons you started it?
I have been paddling and competing internationally now for 7 years. I have always been involved in water sports since I can remember, growing up on the Gold Coast of Australia the ocean has been a big part of my life and when stand up paddling came along it was something new that involved being in the water so for me it was just a natural progression from the sports I was already doing.
You are on the elite of sup racing worldwide. Is it very difficult to perform at that level? I guess it wasn’t an easy journey, too.
The level of competition has come a long way over the 7 years that I have been competing. The amount of competitors who are able to compete at the top level has grown significantly and will continue to grow for many years to come. For myself staying at the top level of the SUP racing scene has been getting harder every year, which is a good thing, as it gives me more motivation to train harder and improve my standing each year.
Flat water, downwind, surfing. Which is your favourite and why?
Anything to do with the ocean I enjoy the most, but down winding would have to be my favourite by far. Surfing endless bumps out in the ocean is something that never gets old. The ocean is unpredictable and ever changing, every time I go for a downwind paddle it is something new and exciting. I enjoy the challenge of trying to read the ocean in order to catch the longest glide.
What does your training program involve and how often do you paddle every week? Can you give us some training tips?
My training program, much like most other top athletes, changes in relation to the time of the race season and upcoming events. At the moment, as we are well under way with the 2017 season, my program involves a lot of Anerorobic and maximum threshold work. Short intervals, strength and speed work are the main focus. All up I’m doing around 12-14 season a week with the majority of them being paddling on the water with a bit of cross training thrown in for extra cardio ie. Running, riding. My main Tips would be to work out what races you are training for and want to preform best at, then sit down and work out a schedule to get you felling your best for that event.
We all know that technique is the most important ingredient to success. A few days ago you uploaded a very nice video on Facebook regarding technique. Tell us a few words about it.
Yes Technique is key! I’ve been helping a local university study the benefits of Stand Up paddling for the body and as a part of that we analysed every detail of the paddle stroke of an elite and novice paddler. The Team at Bond university where then able to put this data together in the form of a very informative animation of Two skeletons paddling, showing very clearly the differences between the stroke of an elite paddler and a novice paddler and the impact that these different techniques have on the body.
In 2016 you made a big transition to a new SUP company, the One, and you have already won some big races in Australia. Tell us about this new beginning.
It has been great to finally Join the ONE SUP team this year and ride some amazing boards. The team here at ONE is the best, every one involved has years of experience in the industry and are dedicated to producing the best quality gear for everyone to get out and enjoy this amazing sport. This transition has given me new motivation and a fresh start to my 2017 season! With a few big wins under my belt on the new boards already, I fell like this year is going to be a great ONE!
As I know, you enjoy downwind paddling a lot. Ηere in Greece we love downwind paddling, too. Why do you like it so much and why should someone start doing downwinders?
Yes down wind paddling is my favourite. As I said above growing up in Australia the ocean was a big part of my life and on the Gold Coast we have some of the best down wind conditions in the word. So naturally when I started paddling it became something I did nearly everyday and I became very good very quickly. For me it is the most enjoyable form of paddling, its more fun than it is training. Downwind paddling is great fitness and a heap of fun for anyone who wants to learn. The experience that you get from learning to master the ocean in bumpy conditions helps you in all aspects of your paddling.
What is your typical day like?
My typical day involves waking up early to get on the water with my local paddling crew to smash out a solid 1 – 2 hour session, then home to fuel up and rest for another session later that afternoon. Depending on conditions ill go for a surf during the day.
Favourite board & paddle?
My favourite board at the moment would have to be the ONE SUP Storm 14×24. We have put a lot of work into this race winning machine and it has carried me to some great wins already this year. We only produce great paddles here at ONE so choosing just one is too hard!
Best sup location?
I love paddling at my local spots here at home but I cant go past paddling in the crystal clear waters of Hawaii.
Most memorable SUP session?
That would have to be whilst racing at Hookipa on Maui last year for the APP World series in 6- 8 foot surf! Racing with your mates is always fun but when you throw massive surf in the mix it makes for an unforgettable experience.
Where do you see sup in the near future?
Its hard to say, SUP has come such a long way already since its beginning. With the amount of interest and its continual growth every year I can only see good things ahead. More opportunities for every to get out and have fun on the water!
Have you ever been in Greece? Would you like to sup to our seas?
I haven’t been to Greece yet but from what I have seen and heard it is and amazing place. With your race scene getting bigger and bigger I look forward to making a trip over to race!