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Through the Lens of Amy Bathgate

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Amy Bathgate is that quiet and most “focused” presence at our sports events. Yet her impact on changed, improved and victorious athletes has nothing quiet about it at all.

SA Sport is indeed blessed with the likes of Amy who serve with passion, dedication, and much heart as she works with our athletes and coaches through her biomechanics and videography. Her lens has focused on subjects as diverse as Olympians through to the youngest of our young little athletes.

She says “ I look at some athletes and obviously I am often impressed at how good they are – but it is super exciting to analyse their techniques and performances and then realize how good they possibly could be! Her story is all about how destiny chose her for this career that gives her so much joy.

When asked to share a challenge to our youth she says – “Take accountability. Forget excuses. And enjoy what you do!”

Q: You are passionate and doing brilliantly as a HPC Biomechanics & Video Analyst and Dartfish Certified Instructor. The quiet and most “focused” presence at our sports events 🙂,  thank you! Tell me a little bit about how you started in this field, your career journey up to now?

Thanks! Well to be honest I didn’t really choose this career path at all – it kind of chose me. I was uncertain as to what career to pursue after finishing school and Sport Science or Biomechanics wasn’t even one of my potential options. Slowly through my studies however, it came to the forefront and I was drawn towards the physics of movement in the human body. My studies brought me to Tuks and during my time there I got involved helping out shadowing certain people at the HPC and Biomechanics basically took over from there. It became a passion which has grown through the years and I love what I do! I’ve been able to work with athletes and coaches from all walks of life, in numerous sports and with all sorts of goals. From international athletes looking to blow up the world stage to young children still learning the basics – the goal is always to improve on their performances and every day is different and every story has its own rewards.

So no, it wasn’t planned, but it all fell into place for me J

Q: You have shared with me before your excitement when you work with the greats in sport and your vision for what is attainable – please can you share again 🙂

I find it really exciting to analyse performance/s and search for areas where improvement could possibly be made. Every athlete always wants to get better – it’s a career long search for what is possible and how good they can possibly be. Being able to contribute to this goal and provide a few stepping stones along the way is often very challenging but extremely rewarding. I look at some athletes and obviously I am often impressed at how good they are – but it is super exciting to analyse their techniques and performances and then realize how good they possibly could be!

Q: One of the highlights of your career so far?

It is so difficult to pinpoint any one specific highlight as there have simply been so many. But generally speaking it would be seeing the joy and excitement on the athletes faces when they achieve/surpass their goals and I know I contributed in some way.

 Q: You are hectic with many things, long and overtime hours, away from home etc,  how do you manage to balance all aspects of your life?

I think enjoying what I do is key. Sport doesn’t operate in normal business hours and athletes aren’t books you can just close when you go home – so it’s all part of the job. It’s all a matter of prioritizing and working as efficiently as possible.

Q: Unfair question J – what is your favourite sport to watch and enjoy?

In terms of Olympic sports I would have to say Swimming. In terms of other sports it would be Cricket.

Q: Name 1 or 2 things on your bucket list? Career and or personal J

Career-wise I think to get to the point where the field of Biomechanics and Video/Performance Analysis is an integrated part of most South African elite team set-ups, instead of being used as an ad hoc service.

Personally I would have to say going to see the Northern Lights some time, and bring home the World Cup from the Dubai Indoor Cricket World Cup later this year 🙂

Q: You brilliant at what you do – but what 1 thing does Amy suck at 🙂

Saying NO… Oh and Golf…

Q: What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

“Sports do not build character – they reveal it!”

Q: Do you have any other collaborations / projects that you want to share about? 

I recently teamed up with an international company to do some research looking in-depth at the different phases of the freestyle flip turn in swimming and investigating how to get swimmers to turn faster and more efficiently.

Q: What is your why? What legacy do you want to leave behind for those coming after you?

Wow that’s a tough one… I would have to say my “why” is because I, personally, enjoy what I do. The athletes and the sports change, the goals change, things don’t always work out – but I enjoy every step of the journey. In terms of a legacy – I want to encourage and educate athletes and coaches about the benefits of using sport science so that those to come can to be more valued and integrated into sporting systems/teams.

Q: You deal daily with our sports youth, the sports stars of tomorrow, what would your challenge be to our youth?

Take accountability. Forget excuses. And enjoy what you do!

Thank you so much for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for your journey and endeavours ahead. We look forward to following you as you go from strength to strength. Blessings!

This Post is Proudly Sponsored by Wonder Towel – www.wondertowel.co.za – Eco-friendly Microfibre Towels for every occassion: #EcoFriendlyLuxury4Life

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