Meet Daniela Moroz, a true waterwoman and international kiting competitor based in San Francisco and attending college on Oahu. Follow her on Instagram @daniela_moroz and look out for her takeover of @sensibikinis on July 25!
What is your day job? How do you manage work vs. fun balance?
Outside of kiting I am a college student at the University of Hawaii studying International Business and Marketing. I was competing internationally all through high school and maintaining my training schedule and GPA. That taught me time management and how to be able to switch my mindset from kiting and competing to "real life" (aka school). My life really became a big balancing act between my "kiting life" and "school life." I learned so much along the way and apply all those lessons now in college.
How did you get into your sport?
Both of my parents were long time windsurfers and raced in everything from the local Friday Night Races at the St Francis Yacht Club to the U.S. Nationals. They were commonly seen riding out of the Berkeley Marina.
My first race was windsurfing in August of 2000. It was the San Francisco Classic, hosted by the St Francis Yacht Club, which is a long-distance race that takes you on an epic tour around the bay. That year about 40 windsurfers started, but only 8 finished. But the funny thing is that I was not even born yet, that my mom finished the Classic while she was pregnant with me. 15 years later, I finished 5th out of 25 in the same race on a kite and foil.
I started taking lessons with Sandy Parker at Ki’topia at the Sherman Island Delta at 11 years old. In late summer 2013 I had my first racing experience out of Crissy Field at one of the Thursday Night Races. Not long after, I learned how to foil and raced the entire 2014 season on a Sword.
What motivates you?
My passion for being out on the water and pushing my limits in order to become the best athlete I can be are my biggest motivations. I love seeing how fast I can go on the water and discovering what my body is capable of.
Live in the moment!
For more powerful affirmations, check out our post here.
What are your tips for overcoming bad vibes in your sport?
I've been extremely lucky to have always experienced only positivity and encouragement in my male-dominated sport. At the same time, one of my goals has always been to show people that female athletes can be just as good as men. There is always a part of me that finds great satisfaction in beating the boys on the racecourse ;)
What do you do to cross-train?
Swimming was my first love - I used to swim year-round competitively and still try to get in the pool every day. I recently have gotten into road biking since pools are currently closed, and normally spend a lot of time doing mobility and strength work at the gym.
What's a current struggle for you?
Right now I am really struggling with burnout. I had a really intense schedule over the past few years and last year especially; just last fall I had about 7 back-to-back events that really tested my mental strength. I still won every racing title I could have, including my fourth consecutive world championship and third consecutive European championship, but by the end of the year, I was really drained. I took some time off from kiting at the end of the year to really focus on school and to truly experience college, and then went back into training in the spring when I felt that fire and drive start to burn inside me again. I learned that I really need to take breaks more often, so I am taking another one now for the next month or so while I take some summer classes online for school and do some other non-kiting activities.
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I love any and all books about sports psychology. One of my favorites is The Rise of Superman by Steven Kotler. I also really enjoyed Chasing Excellence by Ben Bergeron.
What's something you're really proud of?
I think the accomplishment I'm most proud of is managing to balance high school with an international competition schedule. It was a really challenging time but I am extremely thankful for everything I learned and experienced.