Shane Benedict | USA

Shane Benedict 2013 IWHOF finalist2013 Finalist: Shane Benedict
Category: 
Pioneer
Sport: Kayaking
Years Active: 1979-Present
Home Base: Hendersonville, NC


Pioneer Accomplishments:

  • 1993 – Produced first whitewater freestyle instructional video, Just Add Water
  • 1996 – Co-created the first accredited traveling high school for paddling – Adventure Quest
  • 1997 – Designed Perception kayak paddled by 1st Place K1 Men, K1Women Freestyle World Champions Ken Whiting, Nicole Zaharco – 3D
  • 2000 – Co-founded US Freestyle Kayaking Association
  • 2000 – Joined group that formed Liquidlogic Kayaks, two times Manufacturer of the Year
  • 2005 – One of earliest blogging paddlers
  • 2009 – Co-founded www.whitewaterinstruction.com

Other Accomplishments:

  • 1990 –1998 Paddling instructor, Nantahala Outdoor Center
  • 1993 – Bronze Medalist K1, Whitewater Freestyle World Championships – USA; US C1 Team
  • 1994 – Silver Medalist K1, Whitewater Freestyle PreWorld Championships – Canada
  • 1997 – US Freestyle K1 Team member – Canada
  • 1996 – 2nd Place, first annual Green River Race
  • 1999 – Head Judge, Freestyle World Championships – New Zealand
  • 2001 – US Freestyle K1 Team member at World Championships – Spain; coach for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the K1Men Jr., 1st and 3rd in K1Women Jr. competitors
  • 2001 – Top medalist, Whitewater Extreme Racing World Championships
  • 2003 – Head Judge, Freestyle World Championships – Austria

Shane Benedict has been part of the modern wave of boaters that took the collective of whitewater paddling from the early “recrefication” of slalom boats solidly into the playboating era, and on to post-rodeo boat design. With an unusual love of teaching and mentoring, he shaped boat design with the development of cutting edge rodeo moves, enabling young paddlers to embrace excellence in ever shorter spaces of time.  He cut new paths early teaching paddling at 16; instructing, guiding and leading international adventure travel trips. He produced the first whitewater freestyle instructional video, Just Add Water and in co-founded the first traveling kayak high school whose students include today’s leaders and role models: Andrew Holcomb, Pat Keller and Brad Ludden. Since 1995, Shane has designed 60 kayaks, touching all segments of paddling.

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