Meet the Coaches

Body Boat Blade International is owned and operated by two of the most qualified, dedicated, and passionate coaches in the Pacific Northwest. Body Boat Blade was voted the best kayak school in the west two times by Sea kayaker Magazines readers choice award. All Coaches at Body Boat Blade are UKCC* certified and awarded by the BCU** the internationally recognized Gold Standard of coaching and skills awards. At Body Boat Blade we guaranty Professional Quality Coaching and Leadership to every student every time!

*UKCC=United Kingdom Coaching Certification **BCU=British Canoe Union now known as British Canoeing)

 

Leon Sommé

Coach Level 5 Sea (aspirant), BCU 5 Star Sea, 4 Star Surf, 4 Star Inland, 3 Star Open Canoe

Leon Sommé

Leon first discovered paddling as a unique, low impact way to explore the natural world. It has allowed him the opportunity to paddle below 2000 foot vertical cliffs hosting the largest breeding bird colony in the world while circumnavigating Iceland, to having 25 Orca Wales swim a paddle length away from his boat for three hours during one of his two circumnavigations of Vancouver Island BC.

Leon and his partner Shawna Franklin believed that if they could get other people to have these kinds of experiences from the cockpit of a kayak it would change how they cared for and appreciated the natural world. With that goal in mind they co-created Body Boat Blade International, a two time award winning paddle sports school based in the best paddling region in the world.

Ever year Leon paddles to Patos Island for the Christmas Holiday, he surfs the wave at Skookumchuk for his birthday, during the winter storm season he spends a week surf kayaking in Tofino BC, and every October “32”nd he goes on an overnight pumpkin paddle. He got engaged to Shawna at Cape Scott while circumnavigating Vancouver Island and married her on a small Island in a winter storm on a surfing trip to Tofino. Between those annual trips and falling in love he does a lot of paddling. Leon loves, loves, loves small human powered water craft and has a tireless desire to try new things in them.

Leon works as both a coach and a coach educator and has been involved in paddlesports for over two decades. Leon was the first BCU Region Coaching Officer on the west coast and has served as a board member for the Trade Association of Paddle Sports and BCUNA.

Every year Leon attends symposiums across the country and internationally as a featured coach. He knows for sure that his goal has worked successfully on at least one person! Do what you love!

Ambassador and team paddler for Kokatat, Werner, Snapdragon, Sea Kayaking UK (NDK), and North Water.

Read more about Leon Sommé

Shawna Franklin

Coach Level 5 Sea (aspirant), BCU 5 Star Sea, 4 Star Surf, 4 Star Inland, 3 Star Open Canoe

Shawna Franklin

Shawna is the first woman in the United States to gain the BCU 5 Star Sea Award, a test of skills and leadership in advanced sea conditions. Putting these hard earned skills to test in 2003, she was the first woman to successfully circumnavigate Iceland with famed solo paddler Chris Duff and Leon Sommé, a trip of over 1600 nautical miles in 81 days. In 2007 Shawna circumnavigated the Islands of Haida Gwaii, B.C., with award winning film maker Justine Curgenven and partner Leon Sommé. And in 2012 she circumnavigated Vancouver Island, B.C. with her partner Leon Sommé.

Shawna's passionate involvement in paddlesport has kept her paddling and teaching for over 20 years. She has a natural, fun, and adventurous style to her coaching that instills confidence and a passion in her students helping them to become lifelong paddlers. Each year, Shawna is sought by many national and international symposiums as paddlesport coach and coach educator.

In 1992 while studying at university she worked at Kokatat as their sole repair person. Currently she serves as a board member of the newly formed Paddlesports North America and is the PNA Coaching Committee Chairperson.

As an artist, Shawna is drawn to the sea for inspiration. She spends her time off the water in her art studio on Orcas Island drawing, painting, and making linoleum block prints. Her paddling skills allow her a deeper artistic inspiration and in turn her paddling skills have also become a form of art. Shawna’s goal is to share her enthusiasm for teaching, paddling, and sense of adventure with you!

Ambassador and team paddler for Kokatat, Werner, Snapdragon, Sea Kayaking UK (NDK), and North Water.

Read more about Shawna Franklin

Seth Albanese

BCU/UKCC Level 2 Coach, BCU 4 Star Sea Leader, 3 Star Open Canoe

Seth

Seth began sea kayaking while living in Philadelphia, sneaking out on weekends to explore the New Jersey coastline. Wanting to do more, Seth quit his job and moved across the country to be closer to the sea. After settling on Orcas Island, Seth began focusing on his development as a paddler, and later as a coach. Since moving to the west coast in 2010, Seth has earned the BCU 4 Star Sea Leader award and began progressing through the BCU/UKCC coaching scheme. He has taken opportunities to explore Alaska, British Columbia, Baja Mexico, and the pacific coast of the Continental US.

Read more about Seth Albanese

Sharon Bloyd-Peshkin

BCU (UKCC) Coach 2, BCU 3* Canoe and 4* trainee, BCU 4* Sea Kayak and 5* trainee, ACA Level 5 Advanced Open Water Coastal Kayaking instructor, ACA Level 3 River Kayaking instructor, Wilderness First Aid

Sharon Bloyd-Peshkin - BCU (UKCC) Coach 2, BCU 3* Canoe and 4* trainee, BCU 4* Sea Kayak and 5* trainee, ACA Level 5 Advanced Open Water Coastal Kayaking instructor, ACA Level 3 River Kayaking instructor, Wilderness First Aid

Read more about Sharon Bloyd-Peshkin

Alec Bloyd-Peshkin

BCU (UKCC) Coach 2T, BCU 3* Canoe and 4* trainee, BCU 4* Sea Kayak and 5* trainee, ACA Level 5 Advanced Open Water Coastal Kayaking instructor, ACA Level 4 Whitewater Kayaking instructor, Wilderness First Responder

Alec Bloyd-Peshkin - BCU (UKCC) Coach 2T, BCU 3* Canoe and 4* trainee, BCU 4* Sea Kayak and 5* trainee, ACA Level 5 Advanced Open Water Coastal Kayaking instructor, ACA Level 4 Whitewater Kayaking instructor, Wilderness First Responder 

Read more about Alec Bloyd-Peshkin

Calvin Croll

BCU 4-Star Sea Leader, BCU/UKCC Level 1 Coach, ACA L4 Open Water Kayaking instructor

In the past two years Calvin has been formalizing his paddling and coaching experience within the BCU system. He is currently a BCU 4-Star Sea Leader and BCU/UKCC Level 1 Coach. He is also an ACA L4 Open Water Kayaking instructor. Lately he's been venturing out of his home waters to paddle in Maine, Rhode Island, Oregon, and now Washington. 

Read more about Calvin Croll

 
 

Body Boat Blade, International

PO Box 1487
Eastsound, WA 98245

info@bodyboatblade.com

(360) 376-5388

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