Written by: Kailey Koehler
When I was six I joined the Aquanut Water Shows. Here I met some of my best friends who have truly impacted my life and helped me grow as a person. The best part about show skiing is that it truly is a family show. Most families get split up where one parent is going to a soccer game and the other is going to a tennis match, but not in my case. My entire family has been a part of the Aquanuts for 13 years. My dad drives a boat, my mom rides in the boat, and both my sister and I ski.
When I was ten years old I began to compete at barefoot three event tournaments. I never in my wildest dreams thought that this sport would bring me all around the world. I have competed in 4 World Championships. I have barefooted in New Zealand, Germany, Texas, and Australia. Representing my country is truly an honor and this past worlds I earned the title of being the third best overall barefooter in the world. I couldn't have done this without the help of my coaches at the World Barefoot Center, and more importantly my family. My parents have supported me through everything I have done and every decision I have made. To this day my parents say, “If you want to quit skiing tomorrow, we have your back.” Also, my sister has always been by my side pushing and motivating me to be the best that I can be. We compete against each other but that doesn't stop us from being best friends and accomplishing all of our goals together.
Over this past summer I received the honor of being a member of my first Show Ski World team. I had the time of my life skiing with 35 of the best skiers in the United States. This amazingly talented group of skiers came together as a family to rise up to the top and do what it takes to gain the title of “World Champions.” I have never been a part of such a fast pace show that was filled to the rim with difficulty and excitement. Now, when I say fast pace I am not kidding. I literally ran from act to act to hopping in and out of boats and then riding a bicycle to the other end of the show course just so that I could make it to my next act. The show was put together and perfected into being the best water ski show of all time. Every single person on the show ski world team deserved the gold and the hard work truly paid off. I also received the tremendous honor of being named, “The most outstanding female skier”. It was truly a blessing for me to receive this award.
As a college student attending Concordia University of Wisconsin, it has been difficult for me to miss school and not daydream about being out on the water all day, but my education comes first and it is very important to me. I never imagined where my life would take me and that strapping skis on at the age of two would take me all around the world. No one would have thought that the girl who only wanted to tube would later become the most outstanding female show skier in the world. My life on the water has just started and I will continue for as long as possible. Skiing has helped make me the person I am today and it has bound my family like no one could have imagined. After all, life on the water is truly the only life.
Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”