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Athlete Profile: Emma Waddington

Born  1998
Hometown Hamilton, ON
Currently living Hamilton, ON
Club DontGetLost
Occupation Student
Training log
Twitter @_emmawaddington

What was one of the highlights of your 2016 season?

Getting the opportunity to race at the World Orienteering Champs in Sweden in the sprint and forest relay was the best highlight of 2016 for me. It was my first time racing in a relay at WOC and it was an incredible learning experience and made me super proud to represent Canada at this level!

Which race/races are you most excited about for 2017?

I am most excited about JWOC 2017 in Finland since I have some big goals for the sprint race (and the other races too, of course!)

What race/event is on your orienteering bucket list?

I have always wanted to race Jukola, and now that my school ends a lot earlier, I’ll hopefully be able to make a team and race it in the next few years! Another race I’d love to do sometimes is the Race the Castles Series in Scotland!

Tell us one fun fact about yourself.

My Jr. girls cross country team won 1st place at OFSAA in 2013! – Nicole Whitmore was on that team too!

What are some of your 2017 goals outside of orienteering?

Finish my first year of University with good marks and do lots of good quality training with the McMaster XC/track team to get faster and stronger for this summer’s orienteering races!

What orienteering technique are you currently working on to improve?

I’ve been working a lot on being aggressive while orienteering by choosing good routes, simplifying and doing more rough compass. Having a safe and simplified route will help with being aggressive since there’s fewer places to slow down and make decisions, and I can just run hard, and play with speed more near the circle. I’ve also been adding some terrain and deep snow running to help get faster in woods.

Tell us about other ways you are involved in orienteering (eg, coaching, mapping, organizing events…)

Within Dontgetlost, I’ve made a few sprint maps for schools, helped volunteer at some big races, and I’ve done some coaching with our kids program, ARK. I’ve coached both younger and older kids in ARK, and at our summer camp program. It’s great to coach kids the sport that I love, and it’s so fun to see them get the hang of it and take off with the map!

What sort of mental training do you do to improve your orienteering?

I love to do lots of visualization, whether it be of an actual map, of an object, of a place, or even of me executing a certain part of a race. All these kinds of mental images help me build up many different visuals of things that could happen, or of the way things may look. This helps prepare me for whatever a race throws at me.

I will do these exercises while just relaxing, or exercising on a spin bike. Sometimes I will take a map of a random area and visualize what routes I would take while I go for a long run.

Describe one of your favourite training exercises.

A favourite training of mine, especially for sprint, are o-tervals. I love having short, fast paced courses where you can race head to head with other people. It keeps you on your toes, your mind thinking, and a gets you a little competitive with the others. It’s also great for a race-like simulation because you have the others there to keep you motivated to push harder.


Emma is a member of Orienteering Canada’s 2017 High Performance Program

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