Lia Stephenson

Q&A with Lia

Q. How old were you when you started at Track Academy?
A: 13

Q. Did you do any sport before you joined Track Academy?
A: I was in a range of sports! Swimming, cheerleading, dance, ballet and playing a musical instrument.

Q. Why did you join Track Academy?
A: My family are sprinters and I wanted to try a new sport so I got into athletics. I also watched the Olympics when I was younger.

Q. What has been your biggest challenge and how do you manage this?
A: Being injured has been my biggest challenge. However, my ambition to be on the world class stage inspires me to push through my injury and get back on my feet competing at the top level in my age category.

Q. What has been your biggest accomplishment in athletics? How did your coach support you?
A: My biggest accomplishment was gaining my GB and NI vest to compete at the LIA 2015 Competition. My coach was very supportive in the run-up to qualifying and during the competition; this ensured I was very prepared to jump against the best in the country.

Q. What has been your biggest accomplishment in education? How has Track Academy supported this?
A: Getting a first class degree at university. I was not the brightest student in school, even though I managed 11 A*-C’s GCSE and 3 A Levels. Track Academy kept in touch with me throughout my degree, ensuring I was on track managing my athletics and my education. This was a positive influence to try my hardest.

Q. What opportunities have you experienced via Track Academy?
A: Many experiences such as going to the Olympic Stadium, support with my Jack Petchey award, and opportunities to travel the country to compete at national championships as the accommodation and travel was provided by Track Academy.

Q. How important is your relationship with Track Academy staff and athletes?
A. It is very important as I began my journey as an athlete with the academy. It helped me get to the level I am at now and I am forever grateful for the continued support that I receive. Being a role model to up and coming athletes is important to me because I was once looking up to older alumni aspiring to be a top class athlete.

Q. What experience can you take with you to your next endeavour that you learned whilst working with Track Academy?
A: I have learnt that giving up is never an option. I’ve learnt that perseverance and belief in my own ability will get me to the top but as well with the right advice, support and coaching I can succeed even further to my goals.

Q. What advice do you have for young student athletes who want to join Track Academy?
A: The advice I would give younger athletes is LISTEN to staff – they have your best interest at heart even if you believe otherwise. Dream, believe, achieve and you’ll succeed.

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