mandy wintink

Valuing Women Role Models in Sport

One of the things that drew me to ultimate was the many nuances of gender equality that are embedded within the sport. One example is the mixed division – a division in which men and women play high-caliber ultimate together on one team. Another example is the ‘Open’ division, which is open to all genders and all ages.

My appreciation for equality in ultimate was reinvigorated last week when Ultimate Canada announced the addition of the Women’s Master’s division in CUCs for Vancouver, 2013. This was reminiscent of the excitement when Canada agreed to send its first-ever women’s master’s team (+30yrs of age) to Japan to compete at the World Ultimate and Guts Championships 2012.

Getting Open Because You Think You Can

During a post-game debrief at Montreal Jazzfest, the other captains used me as an example of being able to “always get open” on my cuts. They qualified this by saying that it wasn’t because I was the fastest but that regardless, I still got open.

I do get open often and it is not because I’m faster, it’s because I BELIEVE I can get open. And for what my mind believes, my brain processes information accordingly and creates appropriate opportunities, and then the rest of my body follows.  One of my favorite quotes is by Henry Ford. He says “Whether you think we can or think you can’t, you are right”. I love it because it nicely sums up the power of the mind-brain-body relationship I have come to understand through personal experience and formal education.

Finding My Mojo

There’s something magical and truly indescribable about playing competitive team sports. If you’re reading this, you’ve likely had the experience yourself and have possibly struggled to describe it to people in the “real world.” While driving back to Toronto from the Boston Invite 2 days ago I was, once again, thinking about how amazing these experiences are, particularly this year as I struggled heavily with finding my mojo.

The Impact We Have On Others

I’ve had an amazing rollercoaster ride since arriving on the Toronto ultimate scene last July. First of all, I was scared to death to move here largely because I was scared of integrating into a new scene after having only played in Halifax.  Not long before my move, I spoke of my ultimate career as ending once I left Halifax. I was so sure that my level of play was not high enough for me to be considered for Lotus, Toronto’s top women’s touring team.