Today meet fresh and hungry Kristen Straszacker, a champion girl where you can really see girl power at its best, especially with her recent brilliant achievements at Level 3 and the African Junior champs 2015. She is a deeply grateful and passionate little leader and victor. Kristen is appreciative of all the help and assistance that she is getting in her life on her journey up, speaking with love and appreciation of her God, parents and family and wonderful coach – Csanad Feldhausz. This gratitude and humility in an athlete is a sign of a great future ahead.
She says “I am a bit of a perfectionist but I use it to my advantage because I never give up before something is done properly. I am a hard-worker, confident and value my morals. I love to strive for bigger things than just reality and I always take full responsibility for my actions towards any aspiration in life, once I start something it is hard to settle for just OKAY”. She is currently in Durban for Olympic Trials / Senior Nationals – all the best Kristen!
Athlete: Bio / Stats
|Name & Surname||Kristen Carolyn Straszacker|
|Date of birth||27 February 2000|
|Place of birth||Cape Town|
|Current City||Cape Town|
|Club||Aquasharks Swimming Academy|
|Coach’s Name||Csanad Feldhausz|
|Out of Country events/ meets||Stuttgart Annual Club Gala, Germany 2010 – Tour to Pescara, Italy 2014 – 11th African Junior Championships, Egypt 2015|
|Secondary Sport/ sports||Unfortunately with my swimming program I do not have time for any other sports|
|Favorite City||Rome, Italy|
|Favorite Song/ type of music||Energy – Drake although I listen to practically all genres of music|
|School & Grade||Stellenberg High School, Grade 11|
||Instagram – @krist3nstraszacker
Facebook – Kristen Carolyn Straszacker
|Parents Names, siblings||Mandy (Mom), Karl (Dad), Kirsten (Twin Sister)|
Q: You are passionate and doing so well in your swimming tell me a little bit about how you started in swimming and your journey in the swimming arena up to now?
My swimming journey began when I was 8 years old when I started swimming with Heinz Dittrich. I swam with him for 5 years before I started feeling it was time for some change. I then moved clubs to Aquasharks Academy where I am coached by Csanad Feldhausz. Since the beginning Csanad and I have had a very good connection where we work through long and hard hours in the pool with my end goal in mind. My training partners motivate me through these long hours and we all love accomplishing goals during training. We train 10 times a week and I would say for the past year my hard work has definitely shown in my results.
Q: You did so brilliantly and proudly represented Team SA last year at the African Junior Swimming Championships in Cairo, Egypt. You broke the meet record for 400 IM, and medaled for other events too – Congrats! How did you experience that?
I loved the experience. One of the main things I learnt is that independence is a big factor in life.
Things are very different when you don’t have parents and your usual swim squad with you, from that I learnt that good communication between teammates and new coaches is very important.
It was also an eye opener showing me that swimming is a big sport around the world and I’m very grateful that we have some of the best coaches in the world coming straight from home.
Q: You also did brilliant at the recent level 3 in PE. What do you ascribe your recent successes / winning streak to 🙂?
First of all my parents that drive me to training and back, wake me up at 4:00 in the morning and take me to training – willingly.
My coach, all his hard work and most of all his effort and attitude towards my swimming .
All my family and friends that always support me even when they know that I am tired from a hard week in the pool, they never seem to struggle to put a smile on my face.
Q: In your opinion, what is the value of Education in a young person’s life?
Education has always been a critical thing in my life and my parents always motivate me to do better at school and to maintain a good aggregate. Education is important all over the world so no person should ever underestimate their capabilities in education. School and learning is also all about your mind, a good attitude = good results.
Q: Would you like to share a little bit more about your faith journey?
Growing up, my family never went to church a lot so choosing to be a Christian was ultimately my decision.
When I have time I love to go to youth and spend some time with God. Thanking Him for all that he has given me and thanking Him for all that he is still going to give me.
Q: What do you do to relax?
I love to sleep; I am very good at that, no one has to ask me that twice. I also love to just watch TV and listen to music.
Q: What is your personal favourite motivational quote?
Work in silence and let success be your noise.
Q: What is your favourite Bible quote?
John 8:31-32 – So Jesus said to those who believed in him, ‘if you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free’
Q: What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?
My biggest challenge is never losing hope, I want to inspire people to achieve what they believe and I want to prove to myself that I have what it takes to accomplish many great things. I always remind myself that I do what I do by asking myself “WHY?” and in that way I always make sure that I’m doing what I love.
Q: In your opinion, how do you define success in life?
Success comes in many different forms and sizes. Success can be making your own bed in the morning or it can be achieving a world record for 100m butterfly. A successful person is someone who has worked hard for what they have achieved and is still never satisfied.
Q: What’s your WHY?
Swimming is my passion and I feel like I have found something that no one can take away from me. I would love to inspire our nation to see that every human being is capable of great things, for people to see that it doesn’t matter where you come from its where you are going that’s important.
Q: What is your message of encouragement to South African and African youth and our nation?
Never let any person set you off your path, stand strong in your values and know where you are going one day, always refer back to your goal when times are tough and always ask yourself “WHY?”
Q: What are you most grateful for in your life at the moment?
My family, my coach, my friends and that I have had the opportunities that I have to help me to become the person I am today. I am grateful for my bed that I get to sleep in every night and that my parents are always willing to do anything for me that will help me in the future.
Most recent champs – SA Nationals 2016
“All in all a wonderful opportunity to participate at this level and to swim with these amazing swimmers. For Kristen her personal goals were to achieve Top 10 for her 5 events and this she achieved this in 50, 100 and 200 Back. After having a fantastic Level 3 it was difficult to yet again swim PB times.” – Mandy – Mom
100 Fly 18th – 1:05:23
100 Back 6th – 1:05:91
200 Back 9th – 2:21:47
50 Back 4th – 30:76 – PB
50 Fly 11th – 29:58
Womens 4 x 100 Medley Relay – Bronze Medal
Thank you so much for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for your journey ahead. We look forward to following you as you go from strength to strength. Blessings!
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