This week, we’re delighted to introduce you to para cyclist, Helen Scott!
We’re excited to be supporting Paralympian, Helen Scott, through our Sport Scholarship programme this year!
As a track cyclist, Helen enjoyed fantastic success at the London 2012 Paralympic games, earning a silver medal in the 1km time trial and a bronze medal in the 3km pursuit!
Helen competes in the tandem pilot, 1km time trial and the sprint events and, more recently, has enjoyed success in the latter two events at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, earning gold in the 1km time trial and the sprint! This success was repeated this year, at the 2015 Track World Championships, as she claimed two further gold medals for the same two events.
Off the track, Helen is busy studying BSc (Hons) Exercise and Sport Science as a distance learner, after joining us at Manchester Metropolitan University in September 2015,
We spoke to Helen about her achievements outside of sport, how she got involved and her future ambitions and aspirations.
What are your notable achievements outside of your sport?
“I am a grade 4 piano player, a level 3 track cycling coach and a qualified fitness instructor.”
How did you get involved with your sport?
“My parents introduced me to a local outdoor cycling track as a small child when I showed an interest in riding my bike and racing my brothers on the streets around our family home.”
Why did you choose to study your course?
“Since being part of the GB Cycling Team, I’ve grown a thirst for more knowledge about how to become a better athlete and how to make others better.
“I am also fascinated by the world of sport, why people do it, the controversies in sport and the highlights in it. My course is perfect for teaching me more about my sport, other sports and how I can adapt what I learn to suit my many interests and ambitions for the future.”
What are your future ambitions and aspirations?
“My first goal looking ahead is to be able to continue improving within my sport, to continue to enjoy what I do, and to reach the absolute top of my sport.
“When it’s time to move on I would love to inspire others to get into cycling. I am a private cycling coach in my spare time, and I would love to expand this further to become a personal coach for British Cycling or perhaps other nations.
“I also love the strength and conditioning side of sport, so I’d like to develop this further to be able to offer strength and conditioning support to my riders and other athletes. I am a keen athletics fan also, so perhaps some role within athletics could be another path for me.”
Who has had the biggest influence on your life?
“My parents. They have dedicated their life to my siblings and me, making sure that we were always able to do whatever we wanted to do. My dad travelled around the country with me as a teenager, taking me to race after race, not to mention buying everything that I needed in order to be competitive. If it wasn’t for his sacrifice I would not be where I am today.
“Another influence was my first cycling coach, Tim Buckle. He is the best coach I’ve ever known. His passion for the sport is infectious, and he still inspires me today. “
What is the best part about being a high performance athlete?
“The best part about being a high performance athlete is to be able to work with the top professionals in sport. I am always learning from everyone who I work with, from my coach to my teammates, the physiologists to the strength and conditioning coaches, I love it!”
What advice would you give to a young athlete?
“Use your time wisely: make sure that you have balance in your life as well as your sport. Most importantly, always enjoy it!”