Kiwi Olympic medallist Luuka Jones reveals she's put her career on hold as she suffers from long Covid

Publish Date
Thursday, 2 June 2022, 3:52PM

New Zealand Olympic medallist Luuka Jones has had to put her canoe slalom career on hold after struggling with long Covid.

Taking to Instagram, the Rio silver medallist revealed she was struck by the virus in March and has struggled with fatigue since.

Alongside a photo of her with her canoe, the 33-year-old said covid has forced her to return home from Europe to recover.

"In 16 years of travelling to Europe to train and compete, I've never had to come home due to injury or illness. This year is a first," she wrote.

"After getting Covid in March, I have really struggled to come back to form. I was starting to get better but after the first week of training in Paris, I started to get more and more fatigued.

"I feel puffed when doing short efforts on the water, and can't handle intensity. I tried to rest up over in Europe, but I wasn't bouncing back," she continued.

"It is really disappointing to not be racing the first World Cups like I planned, but I believe I made a good decision to come home to New Zealand and recover.

"I'm slowly building back into training and assessing day by day what I can handle. I'm really hoping to head back to Germany in a month, and build up to the world champs by the end of July.

"There doesn't seem to be a rule on how to come back from long Covid, or much time it will take, which is hard. I have an amazing team around me, helping me get back to full health, and I am very grateful for the support I am receiving. Here's hoping I'll be back soon."

Jones will miss the opening three K1 World Cup events in Prague, Krakow and Ljubljana this month.