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Episode 26: Kaitlyn Lawes

Curler Kaitlyn Lawes on playing (and winning) with both the girls and boys

Today, curler and 2x Olympic Gold Medallist Kaitlyn Lawes joins #OTP to discuss her early success, the hardship that followed her father’s death, and the state of the game due to COVID-19.

Kaitlyn grew up in Winnipeg, MB on the ice, following her dad (who was an avid curler) around the rink. She says she wouldn’t be the athlete she is today if it wasn’t for his guidance and inspiration. He passed away from a brain tumor when Kaitlyn was just 18-years-old, and the loss shook her hard. In today’s episode, she explains how she contemplated quitting the game the loved, and what made her change her mind.

It’s a good thing she stuck with it, as Kaitlyn has become one of the best players Canada has ever had, winning 15 medals, from the World Championships to the Scotties Tournament of Hearts. Two of those are Olympic Gold, one at the 2014 Sochi Games with Jennifer Jones’ rink (which she joined when she was just 21), and the other in mixed doubles at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games with John Morris. In this episode, Kaitlyn explains the differences between playing with women and men, and why she decided to try her hand at both.

But her career hasn’t been all smooth sailing, as she’s dealt with her fair share of heartbreak. Today, Kaitlyn details the highs and lows of her career, and even shares her thoughts on skipping her own team one day. She also dives deep into the current status of the game because of COVID-19, and explains how she keeps her game up when she’s not able to play. Finally, she gets candid about equal pay and explains why it’s so hard to reflect on her career so far.

Episode topics:

· The uncertainty of sports because of COVID-19

· The impact her dad had on her career

· Almost quitting curling during time of difficulty

· Joining Jennifer Jones’ rink when she was just 21-years-old

· Playing with both women and men


“I used to get really frustrated when I was younger in juniors and I’d lose games, and I’d be really hard on myself…and I’d feel like I let my teammates down. But after my dad passed away, my perspective changed, and I was more accepting of our loses and learned from them instead of just being so down on myself because of it. So, having that switch in perspective really helped my career take off.”

-Kaitlyn Lawes


Guest Info – Kaitlyn Lawes

Instagram: @lklawes

Twitter: @lklawes

Website: http://teamjenniferjones.com

Host Info – Christina Heydanus

Instagram: @tinaheydanus

Twitter: @tinaheydanus

Show Info – Opening the Playbook

Website: https://www.openingtheplaybook.com

Instagram: @openingtheplaybook

Facebook: Opening the Playbook

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