Rowan is 19 years old and one of Leicestershire 's rising young athletes who's specialism is Long Jump. This season 2017 finished in spectacular fashion by winning gold at the ESAA English School Championships. Rowan's first introduction to athletics started when he was around 10 year's old.
Rowan takes up his story: ' I started off as a sprinter due to my natural speed, however through trying different events, I seemed to excel in long jump. Through training with my coach, I was jumping at a decent standard at early stages of my career. My coach and peers always said that I had natural talent, exemplified by winning counties and area school competitions annually. However, I did have set backs as most athletes do. I had commitments in football as I was playing for Burton Albion Academy at the time. So balancing both sporting activities was a challenge for me at first. Playing two sports had its positives and negatives but the injuries I picked up were certainly negative as it put me out for weeks at a time. I picked up a serious pelvis injury from playing football, this put me out for virtually an entire season. This set me back and I had to work hard to get back to the level I was jumping at before the injury. I did manage to get back to the standard I wanted to be at within a couple seasons and I am now challenged to maintain this level and even go further and aim to jump further to progress my career as a long jump athlete. By winning the English schools competition, it showed me that I can compete with top jumpers in the under 20 age group even though I am one of the younger athletes.
'With the aid from a JHMT Inspire grant I will be able prepare myself for competitions more thoroughly, with the right foods, training and coaching.
My ambitions in athletics stretch to national and international level. I believe with the right guidance and training I can be one of the top athletes in the UK and go on to compete for Great Britain in major competitions, this would be my dream as an athlete.'
Simon Taylor – Inspire Awards project lead said: We are delighted to support Rowan through his forthcoming season and have no doubt he will do well and he will inspire those around him and hopefully encourage others to challenge themselves as he has done'
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