Christal ariana Clashing O'Reilly
Author of 'Yemoja's Anansi'
Christal is a pioneer in aquatic spaces in her home country of Antigua and Barbuda. Her mission: to foster positive relationships with aquatic spaces. She has a particular passion for engaging traditionally under-served cultural groups.
In 2004, at the age of 14, she became the first female swimmer to represent her country at the Olympic Games in Athens.
She later joined Team Antigua Island Girls to become the first all-black team and first all-female Caribbean team to row any ocean when they crossed the Atlantic in 2018/2019 and later the mid-Pacific Ocean in 2023. In 2020, she joined the international adventure racing team, Team Onyx, whose mission is to change the face of adventure to include more diversity in outdoor sport and recreation.
Christal is an avid freediver that shares her joy of the water on social media and hopes to one day establish a national record in her country.
Being involved in swimming at an early age, she found a passion for sport and studied Sports Development at the University of Portsmouth in the UK under a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship. She also secured a studentship at the same university to complete her Masters by Research in Science.
She has held certifications as a Canadian Swim for Life Instrutor, an ASCA swim coach, an ACA stand-up paddle instructor and a PADI divemaster. She has honed her skills across the five countries she’s lived in - Antigua, The Bahamas, Australia, England and Costa Rica. As a former adventure guide and travel writer, she brings an international perspective to the engagement of outdoor and aquatic adventure sports.
One Life To Live
From her participation at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, 2006, Antiguan Olympic swimmer, Christal Clashing, reflects on her history of depression and the impact it has had on her family and friends.
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Copyright 2017-2022. Images by Paul Calver.