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Alyce Wood

Alyce Wood (Burnett)

Age

31

Place of Birth

Buderim, Queensland

Hometown

Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast

Junior Club

Sunshine Coast Paddle Sport Club, which I am still a member of today.

Senior Club

Sunshine Coast Paddle Sport Club

Coach

Anna Wood

Olympic History

Rio 2016

Tokyo 2020

Paris 2024

High School

Immanuel Lutheran College

Career Events

Canoe Sprint Womens Kayak Double (WK2) 500m

Women's Canoe Sprint K-1 500m

 

Alyce's Story

Whether it’s a hair tie or nail polish, Alyce Wood (née Burnett) wears a hint of pink to every race.

Growing up on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, a seven-year-old Alyce aspired to be an Ironwoman. She turned to kayaking at the age of 15 to improve her surf ski paddling and fell in love with the sport.

A member of the Maroochydore SLSC, Alyce was inspired by the club’s "strong pedigree of ski paddlers and kayakers."

A multiple Australian surf lifesaving medallist, Alyce continues to compete on the sand and in the surf, but it’s on flat water where the world champion paddler has made her mark.

Her first international success came in 2015 when she and paddle partner Aly Bull combined to win the K2 500 metres at the Under 23 World Championships.

Alyce made her Olympic debut in Rio alongside Aly. The young pair won both K2 selection events, defeating their Olympian idol Naomi Flood and her partner Jo Brigden-Jones in an upset to secure their spot.

At the Rio Games, the duo made the A-Finals of the K2 500m by finishing third in their semi-final. In the final, they came eighth and finished in a time of 1:51.915.

Alyce won her maiden World Championships title in 2017 in the K1 1000. Between 2018-2019 she nabbed a host of world cup medals, including K1 5000 gold at the 2019 Duisburg (GER) World Cup, K4 500 silver at 2018 Szeged (HUN) World Cup, K1 5000 bronze at the 2018 Duisburg World Cup as well as K1 5000 gold at the 2019 Duisburg World Cup.

At the 2019 World Championships Alyce was part of the K4 500 team with Aly, Robert and Bridget-Jones, who secured Australia four quota spots with seventh place.

Four years after they achieved an upset, Alyce and Aly were the favourites leading into Australia’s Tokyo 2020 selection trials. The pair dominated both nomination events winning the K2 500 Australian and Oceania Championships. Proving her strength in the individual event, Alyce also claimed K1 500 gold at both events.

She married fellow kayaker and Olympian Jordan Wood which made paddling more of a family affair, as she is coached by her mother-in-law and Olympic medallist Anna Wood.

Alyce made her second Olympic appearance at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics in both the K1 500m and K2 500m disciplines.

Individually Alyce enjoyed a strong start to the K1 500m, finishing in second place in her group with an opening time of 1:48.572. This set up her semi-final appearance, in which she continued her run of form with a time of 1:53.079 to qualify for the A Final.

Her time in the A final, 1:57.251, fell short of an Olympic medal and placed her eighth overall.

She also competed alongside long-time teammate Aly Bull in the K2 500m. They finished fifth overall with a time of 1:37.412.

Alyce has completed a bachelor of communications and a master of business administration through Griffith University and now runs a digital marketing business specialising in implementing marketing strategies for small business.

She is also a member of the Australian Institute of Sport Athlete Advisory Group and a director of Paddle Queensland.

But her proudest achievement is becoming a mum to Florence in June 2022. Alyce took a year out of competition when she had the baby, but with an eye to competing at the Paris Olympics, she remained extremely active during her pregnancy.

She tapped into the Australian Institute of Sport’s Female Performance and Health Initiative and worked with Central Queensland University’s Melanie Hayman, who led the development of the 2020 Australian Exercise During Pregnancy Guidelines.

Eight months after Florence came into the world, Alyce returned to competition, although she hates it when people suggest she “bounced back”.

"What people don't see is all of the work that goes on in the background," she said.

"The idea of bouncing back tells me that without all the sessions I've done, or all these things that I've given up, it's just happened. I've clicked my fingers, and boom, I'm back.

"The other side of it, which I'm really comfortable with, is that my body will never be the same. And I personally will never be the same.

"The perspective I've gained as a mum is huge.”

Her return to paddling has been successful and in 2023 she secured Australia a quota spot at Paris in the K1 500m by finishing fifth at the world championships.

“The really special thing is there was three of us with kids in that race, and we got third, fourth and fifth,” Alyce said.

“Obviously most people’s ultimate goal is to qualify for an Olympics and to stand on top of the dais, which is something I also aspire to. But whether this happens or not I just want to finish my kayaking career with no regrets, knowing I gave it 110%.”

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