No pain, no gain for tough windsurfer

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Drive Way -

SCAR­BOR­OUGH windsurfer Justyna Sni­ady (29) re­cently raced in 130km/h winds with a bro­ken toe, plac­ing sixth in the Wind­surf­ing As­so­ci­a­tion (PWA) World Cup Wave event in the Ca­nary Is­lands, Spain.

“It was painful, but to be fair I’ve had so many other in­juries... some of my nerves were dam­aged in an ac­ci­dent I had on the wa­ter three years ago,” Sni­ady said.

In 2012, she shat­tered five bones in her foot and sprained lig­a­ments in train­ing, with doc­tors say­ing she would never fully re­cover.

Af­ter five months of re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, Sni­ady re­turned to com­pe­ti­tion at the BWA Wave Cham­pi­onships in Scot­land in 2012.

She moved to Perth five years ago for its wind and waves, af­ter tak­ing up wind­surf­ing aged 12 in her na­tive Poland.

“I started in the Baltic Sea, where we do have some waves, but it’s not like here where we get a swell and wind and I can go af­ter work,” Sni­ady said.

In the early rounds of the World Cup com­pe­ti­tion, strong winds pushed Sni­ady’s board into rocks and smashed her mast, be­fore she went on to a sixth plac­ing in the world rank­ings.

She is now the reign­ing Bri­tish Wave­sail­ing As­so­ci­a­tion Tour Cham­pion, but said her stand­out mo­ment from 2014 was win­ning the first Pol­ish Na­tional Cham­pi­onships.

Sni­ady will next com­pete in a World Cup round in Ger­many this month.

“We go to where the spon­sors are, and where the money is, and where we get 20,000 spec­ta­tors be­cause they’ve been do­ing it there for 20 years, but it means we are in five-de­gree wa­ter with on­shore winds,” she said.

Cham­pion windsurfer Justyna Sni­ady.

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