Catherine Hui: BE Open
BE Ultimate sponsored athlete
by BE Ultimate
atherine Hui has been focused on Worlds 2022 since 2017. The pandemic has been difficult for a multitude of reasons, but the Vancouver resident fondly dubbed “Chewy” has been a wealth of positivity. Since Vancouver’s restrictions allowed for private gyms to reopen late last spring, Catherine's training routine has remained relatively unchanged. That’s not to say she was unaffected. On the contrary, the weeks at the beginning of the pandemic when Vancouver was fully locked down were tough, and Chewy found a new appreciation for getting outside, getting a sweat on, and finding ways to stay sane. If Catherine could speak directly to an athlete struggling to stay consistent, she would tell them to find a purpose and stick to a routine. For Catherine, that purpose has been World Games 2022. Her perseverance, untamed by the global pandemic, and her drive to be competitive and ready to go whenever the call comes have kept her going to the gym and staying active. A purpose does not need to be as lofty as World Games 2022 though; sticking to a schedule or finding balance are both perfectly good reasons for getting out and moving.
“If it is just staying healthy, if it is just staying sane, having those outlets helps change the mindset of having to do something to wanting to do something.”
But regular routine is not all Catherine has achieved during lockdown. With her free time, like many athletes, she has sought new activities and sports to occupy herself, such as Squash, which Chewy finds similar to ultimate in that a player must rely heavily on their dominant hand and side of the body. Catherine does not purport to be great at ball sports but has engaged in the learning process wholeheartedly, along with bouldering. Ultimate players are not known for their arm and upper body strength, but that’s no excuse for not branching out and expanding horizons.
“It has been so much fun learning something new and sucking at something but seeing progress on a week-to-week basis.”
Learning and personal growth are not restricted to the body though, a theme which Traffic has taken up during the time in lockdown. Catherine’s team took to regular check-in sessions with player-led education on social issues around the globe to help broaden their horizons beyond the field, along with some very carefully socially distanced practices. Catherine felt as though she had gotten to know her squad in a completely new way. Socializing has been of critical importance this year, and the time and care which players like Catherine have taken to reaching out to each other has been a wonderful thing.
“Not only do I now know my teammates more than just athletes, I know them more as humans, as people wanting change.”
Catherine is hoping to start taking on a different role with her team in the coming seasons. She joined Traffic in 2010, and has been a captain since 2013. This year, in 2021, Catherine decided to step down as captain - but that doesn't mean she won't still be playing with the same competitive edge. She’s excited to see the next generation of players begin to take on more leadership responsibility within the team, and hopes to provide space for players who are looking to grow and flourish under newfound responsibility.
“For me, Traffic has been such a driving force in my life, and it has played such a big role in my personal development. I’ve had so much growth, so much learning from it. It’s been eye opening and amazing, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
As important as her team is, Catherine has goals outside of ultimate as well, the first of which is to tie the knot. A tough year for any social celebration, Catherine has had time freed up by the lack of tournaments to take another important step in life. It’s a beautiful reminder that even in the darkest of times there is positivity and joy. Whether that means taking up a new hobby, learning a new sport, finding the satisfaction of a hard workout, or making a lifelong commitment, wonderful things are here to stay. And as Catherine looks ahead to Worlds 2022, serving as a beacon of positivity to us all, it seems as though there are still wonderful things to come.