Pad­dle board­ing aids sur­vivor

Central Leader - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - CATRIN OWEN

When Jan van der Lin­den gets out on to the smooth shores of Okahu Bay, she feels at home.

Van der Lin­den was di­ag­nosed with breast can­cer two-and-a-half years ago.

‘‘When any­one is told they have a se­ri­ous ill­ness it’s shock­ing and all peo­ple want to do is be well and do things for them­selves and go for­ward,’’ she says.

In Fe­bru­ary 2015 Van der Lin­den started stand up pad­dle board­ing (SUP).

She started at Pad­dleOn which was started by Vic­to­ria Stu­art and Natalie Stet­tler.

‘‘We started the Pop event years ago with the in­ten­tion of shar­ing our love of pad­dle board­ing with peo­ple,’’ Stu­art says.

‘‘We re­alised that she (Stet­tler) had can­cer and an­other friend had can­cer and they were us­ing it as part of their re­hab so we knew there were ben­e­fits.’’

Van der Lin­den un­der­went surgery to re­move the can­cer and has been given the all clear, she now trav­els all the way from Waimauku to get out on to the wa­ter.

While she was quite ap­pre­hen­sive to get up on the board at first she is now hooked.

‘‘To go through the whole can­cer jour­ney and now to be able to spend time with other peo­ple who have been through the same thing as you and un­der­stand com­pletely.’’

Go to sup­snz.com for more in­for­ma­tion.

PHOTO: CATRIN OWEN/ FAIR­FAX NZ

Jan van der Lin­den has taken up pad­dle board­ing as a form of re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion af­ter sur­viv­ing breast can­cer.

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