Jordana Holloway @jorrr.dana
Wāhine Rider Role Model Series
🧡Tell us a little about yourself:
I grew up in Calgary, Canada and started snowboarding at a young age. I remember catching city transit to our local ski hill after school and on the weekends, and rode with a small crew of local girls. After graduating high school I got a job at the ski hill for the winter. One season quickly turned into 3 and during the third winter is when I met my partner, Matiu, while riding up the chairlift together.
Fast forward 13 years and a few countries later - with a slight pause to study Ski Resort Operations and Management at Selkirk College - snowboarding has provided me with a lot of awesome opportunities. I have been able to meet a lot of amazing people (some of my closest friends I met while riding!), live and explore some of the coolest places, and importantly, gain a lot of life and work experience from frontline jobs in rental/retail shops, snow school instructing and management, catski lodge assistant, to currently working at TCB Ski Board & Bike Shop in Ohakune.
🧡 Tell us about your boardsports journey:
It took me a few years to learn to snowboard and really get into the sport. Now that I am older, I look back and see that I was introduced to snowboarding at the right time and it really helped me get through the middle school and high school years. Unfortunately, my parents went through a divcorce later in my teenage years and going snowboarding provided me with a regular and safe constant in my life, as well as a form of “escape” from reality sort of speak. I could go out riding and completely forget about all the troubles and stress I was carrying. It didn’t matter if I went riding for only a few hours or full day, I would always come home feeling happier.
I have always enjoyed park laps, as growing up and riding at Canada Olympic Park that was one of the main things people would ski/ride there. I have had some amazing powder days riding around Alberta and British Columbia ski resorts - especially at Retallack Lodge and Whitewater Ski Resort, and the seasons I’ve done in Niseko, Japan. I now call Ohakune home and regularly go riding at Turoa on Mt. Ruapehu.
🧡 Reasons you love boardsports:
I love snowboarding because it provides me an outlet for creativity and self expression, and allows me to be in the elements of nature, surrounded by mountains and fresh air. Snowboarding, like mountain biking, is a way that I am able to take care of my mental and physical well-being. I also love how snowboarding, like all boardsports, brings together like minded individuals from different backgrounds to have fun and provide a sense of belonging and community.
🧡 Your favourite boardsports memory:
Wow this is a tough one to answer! I am fortunate enough to honestly say I have had so many amazing memories that it is truly challenging to single out one specific moment! Overall a regular memory that I always reflected back on is from spending winters working as a snowboard instructor. Watching students challenge themselves and fight fears of learning a new skill and being able to watch their progression throughout the process - that’s quite an amazing feeling to know you can be a part of someone’s journey (and memory!) of learning a new boardsport!
🧡What other ways do you cherish (manaaki) yourself? (personal well being)
Alongside snowboarding, I love to go mountain biking and walking our dog Figaro, as well as spending time with our families and friends. As I’ve gotten older I have learned that my “me” time is also very important too, as well as keeping a healthy balance between work and life. Since living in Ohakune year-round, I have really gotten into gardening and crafts. A room in our house has been shifted into an art studio and recently we completed a greenhouse in our backyard. These hobbies help provide me time to chill out and slow down, and take the time to reflect on life and dream about future adventures. I also love to garden because it provides us with a source of healthy food to eat while at the same time learning about nature and caring for our environment.
🧡 What advice would you give to other wāhine wanting to pursue a boardsports lifestyle?
Honestly, if you dream of pursuing and living a boardsports lifestyle then chase your dreams! Sometimes I wonder who I would be today if I did NOT follow my passion for snowboarding. Snowboarding has helped fuel the adventurous side of me to explore and grow as an individual, and helped make me who I am today.
Don't be afraid to reach out for help and ask people for advice and guidance - a lot of us have shared very similar experiences while pursuing a boardsports lifestyle and we would be more than happy to talk. We may even have recommendations or people whom we can connect you with to help on your journey!
Jordana Holloway ✨
Follow Her - Insta @jorrr.dana