Category Archives: Academics

Academics Biathle Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports Triathle

Fresh & Hungry: Tim Langerman

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Today I connect with one of those all-rounder champions, Timothy Langerman, excelling in Triatle, Biathle, with a love for rugby and water polo. He is a grade 11 student at Bishops Diocesan College in Cape Town. Lucky guy, with the sea and beautiful Table Mountain to urge him on!

He is a grade 11 student at Bishops Diocesan College in Cape Town. Lucky guy, with the sea and beautiful Table Mountain to urge him on!

He is a grade 11 student at Bishops Diocesan College in Cape Town. Lucky guy, with the sea and beautiful Table Mountain to urge him on!

Tim is a humble, hardworking and passionate sportsman of 16 years old. He is fairly new to the multi sports arena but is already making waves with his brilliant achievements. He is determined to move forward with his sports, yet not neglecting his academics and uses meticulous planning as a weapon to get through the different aspects of his day.

Tim has this to say about himself “I am a dedicated athlete and have a very “Type A” personality, meaning I go for what I want until I have nothing left. …..I am privileged to every day have beautiful facilities surrounding me that can help me on my path”. As a 2 year old Tim repeatedly jumped into the pool during his brother’s swimming lessons – now if that was not showing very early signs of the love for sports then I don’t know!

Tim Front FB

“I am a dedicated athlete and have a very “Type A” personality, meaning I go for what I want until I have nothing left. …

I just want to say to our Youth – be great, you never know who you are inspiring, do not doubt and second guess yourself.  If you are working hard at anything – take a moment to celebrate your progress and the point that you are at in your journey!

INTERVIEW:

You are passionate and doing so well in a number of sports disciplines, tell me a little bit about how you started and about your sports journey up to now?

Well, I started in Multi sports in 2013 when I decided to take part in a local ‘Biathlon’ (Run and swim) and I immediately began to grow a passion for multi code sports. I began mainly as a runner and kept swimming fit through my Water Polo. I then decided to give Triathlon a go (Swim, Cycle, Run) and I did my first proper Triathlon competition in December last year and have loved the sport ever since. On the side of Triathlon I still keep up my running, mostly middle distances, and still play school sport which is Rugby and Water polo. My mum is a keen runner and she and my dad used to run marathons and halves together so I guess one could assume I was going to end up running at some point in my life. From the moment my older brother learnt to swim my parents said they could see I was going to love swimming. I would always jump in the pool when he was having a lesson, regardless of the consequences. (My mum had to jump in and save me twice before I had turned two). The last discipline, Cycling is one that is very new to me. I began cycling only at the end of last year and went into Western Province Champs barely knowing how to use cleats. It has been a long hard ride on the cycling side but I can honestly say I’m beginning to love it on the bike.

I began mainly as a runner and kept swimming fit through my Water Polo

What is the highest accolade you have received in Triathlon and what is your greatest personal accomplishment?

I would say winning the U17 WP Triathlon Champs last year at the age of 16 years old. My biggest achievement would probably have been in early 2014 when I won the U15 Category of the South African Biathlon Championships.

IMG_0134

Do you have any specific regimens or rituals in Triathlon? Maybe a particular diet / training method that can be partially attributed to your success?

Not really, I’ve always tried to maintain a good diet but the seasons are so long so there are always times when I splash out. Otherwise I always try to get a good night’s sleep and not get too anxious before a race.

How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule?

A lot of time is taken up during my day by sports training because I’m having to train for three disciplines instead of one, so balancing academic work on top of all of that is quite tough. I try to plan my days really meticulously and stick close to that plan. It helps to put everything into perspective. I am also incredibly lucky in having a supportive family and circle of friends that help me to keep going.

I try to plan my days really meticulously and stick close to that plan. It helps to put everything into perspective.

I try to plan my days really meticulously and stick close to that plan. It helps to put everything into perspective.

Beside your Triathlon what do you have a passion for?

I would say sport and fitness in general but mainly Water Polo. It has been the sport I’ve played the longest and I’ve never lost the passion I have for it regardless of what level I’m playing at.

Tell me one thing about yourself  that the world does not know?

Haha, I have a crazy sweet tooth which makes keeping a healthy diet quite hard.

What do you do to relax?

Mostly just watch movies or go to friends’ houses and chill.

Which athlete/ athletes inspire you?

Richard Murray, Didier Drogba and Mo Farrah. All are incredibly humble and set great examples for younger generations of sportsmen and women. I also admire Caroline Wostmann the 2015 Two Oceans and Comrades winner. She is a perfect example to others in that it is easy to see that she loves what she does and is doing the sport to enjoy it.  

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”   – Mark Twain.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

I don’t know if it counts as advice, but I’ve always tried to live by this saying: “Do what you love every day and you’ll never have to work a day in your life” I definitely learned that from my Dad who chased his dreams in doing what he wanted.

What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?

Balancing the right amount of family time and other things. I have always, always felt that family comes first. But there is always so much going on at one time that at times I feel it gets quite hard to balance it all. We (My family and I) always have meals together at night and try to spend as much time when we can as possible together.

I have always, always felt that family comes first.

I have always, always felt that family comes first.

When you’ve had a tough / bad day, what lifts you up again?

Family and without a doubt a bowl of popcorn.

I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from Tim Langerman?

My next race is in July in Bloemfontein. It is the SA Duathlon Championships and I’m hoping to do okay in that before returning home and resuming my training for WP Triathlon Champs later this year.

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

Tim is still passionate about his Water Polo.

Tim is still passionate about his Water Polo.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote? “It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.”   – Mark Twain

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?
“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” – Mark Twain

 

Academics Fashion Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports Swimming

Fresh & Hungry: Rene Warnes

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Introduction

Another proudly and passionately SA SWIMMER in the Fresh & Hungry Series is the 23 year old Rene Warnes, nickname “Reen”. A well balanced athlete and BA Psych & Crim graduate, excelling in academics and swimming. She has represented South Africa brilliantly at many World Championships. She is currently training towards her dream at the Seaguls Swimming Club, to make it to Rio Olympics 2016, under the leadership and training of top SA Coaches Graham Hill and Delon Danhauser.

Rene is a deep thinker and gives a glimpse into her inner being by naming her favourite quote as the poem by Maya Angelou called “Still I Rise”. The poem is a poignant declaration of determination, succeeding despite surroundings and history and the strong desire to celebrate our uniqueness and femininity. This fashionista of note has a deep passion for helping children who have experienced trauma and is busy with a post graduate qualification in this regard.

Quiet moment of contemplation.

Quiet moment of contemplation.

Interview

You are a seasoned and brilliant SWIMMER, tell me a little bit about how you started in swimming and your journey up to now?

I got into swimming as a young child, went for swimming lessons to be water safe and just found a love for it. I started competitive swimming at the age of 8 years old. I have been swimming for the past 15 years and have loved every minute of it, even during the extremely tough and difficult phases. As the saying goes “no one said that it would be easy, but they did say that it would be worth it”, and for me it definitely has been more than worth it. I have learnt many life lessons through this sport. It has shaped me into the person that I am today.

I have been swimming for the past 15 years and have loved every minute of it, even during the extremely tough and difficult phases.

I have been swimming for the past 15 years and have loved every minute of it, even during the extremely tough and difficult phases.

What is the highest accolade that you have achieved in swimming and what is your greatest personal accomplishment?

The highest accolade that I have achieved was to represent my country at high level World Championships and the Commonwealth Games. I am working towards achieving what is going to be my greatest achievement and that is qualifying for the Olympics in Rio 2016, and competing on the biggest sporting stage in the world.

 

The highest accolade that I have achieved was to represent my country at high level World Championships and the Commonwealth Games.

The highest accolade that I have achieved was to represent my country at high level World Championships and the Commonwealth Games.

Do you have any specific regimens or rituals in swimming? Maybe a particular diet / training method that can partially be attributed to your success?

You will never see me at a big meet without earphones in my ears before getting in for warm up or before a race. Music plays a big role in my life and in my race preparations. There are just certain songs that help me to get into the right head space and fire up my inner competitor.

I do follow an eating plan, but I do love my sweets and chocolates, but try keeping it to a minimum especially leading up to a big meet. I always have steak and pasta before a big meet – that would probably be as specific as it gets.

You have represented Team SA for swimming before, where did you go and how did you experience it?

I have been incredibly lucky to have travelled around the world as part of Team SA for swimming.  I have been to places that I would never have visited on my own if it wasn’t for swimming e.g. Kenya, Shenzen (China) and Senegal.

Proudly Team SA

Proudly Team SA

Travelling the world

Travelling the world

How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule?

I manage both academics and sport as best as I can. When it comes to exam time, I put my head down and I work hard despite being tired from doing a tough training set. I have been pretty successful in my academic career so far.

Beside your swimming what else do you have a passion for?

Besides swimming, I have a deep seated passion for young children and helping them. I also have a deep, deep passion for fashion. I love dressing up and expressing my inner girly-girl through fashion. I live by these mantras “Dress as though you were going to die today/meet your worst enemy”; and “Dressing well is a form of good manners”. I always want to look presentable to the outside world, even if I am in a tracksuit or in gym gear. As for children… when I decided to go into psychology and criminology, I did it so that one day I could help children who have been affected in negative ways in their lives. I am doing teaching now because that is also a pathway that allows me to help young children.

Rene believes: Dressing well is a form of good manners.

Rene believes: Dressing well is a form of good manners.

Tell me one thing about yourself that the world does not know?

I am a pretty open book so nothing right now springs to mind, BUT I would love to be able to pursue my love for fashion and go to fashion school.

What do you do to relax?

To relax, I enjoy watching movies, going shopping, catching up with friends and just being around people that allow me to have a tummy aching laugh, be myself and be happy.

Which athlete inspires you?

Roger Federer is an athlete that does inspire me and I will support him until he decides that he has had enough of his sport. He has recently said that while he is still playing decent tennis, albeit that he isn’t winning as frequently as he used to, he will continue to play the sport because he loves the game. That for me is huge, because he isn’t playing for the pay cheque at the end of every month but because he enjoys the game and is playing for himself.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

Favourite motivational quote: a Poem by Maya Angelou called “Still I Rise”

Although I am not religious, there is a quote that comes to mind: “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference”.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

“Swim for you, and for no one else”.

Best piece of advice I’ve ever been given “swim for you and for no one else”.

Best piece of advice I’ve ever been given “swim for you and for no one else”.

What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?

My biggest challenge would be not swimming for myself but rather for other people (parents, coaches, media etc.)

When you’ve had a tough / bad day, what lifts you up again?

When I have had a bad day the one thing in life that manages to put a smile on my face would be my English bulldog named Geronimo.

I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from Rene Warnes?

I am currently in training and have started preparations for next year April which is when our SA National Championships are held, and they double over as qualifications for Olympics – RIO 2016.

Thank you so much Rene for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for your preparations towards Rio Olympics 2016 and your academic journey ahead. We look forward to following you as you go from strength to strength. Blessings!

Rene is proudly sponsored by Speedo SA.

Ready for take off!

Read for take off!

 

Proud Medalist

SA Champion Medalists.

 

Rene Warnes - Proudly South African.

Rene Warnes – Proudly South African.

 

 

Academics Faith Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports Swimming

Fresh & Hungry: Rachel Stevenson

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Introduction

South Africa is really blessed with some of the finest Young Athletes. Today we zoom in and have a chat to  Rachel Stevenson, a brilliant SWIMMER. Words that enter my mind about Rachel are: dedicated, committed, a stalwart, determined, hard worker, leader, academic – I can go on. This young champion of 17 years old has just gone from strength to strength under the brilliant coaching and leadership of Coach Gerhard Zandberg, Top SA Swimmer, Olympian and owner of Gerhard Zandberg Sport Academy. Rachel Stevenson has medalled and taken centre stage at SA’s top swimming events over the past few years, and has rubbed shoulders with our top Senior Swimmers at a very young age. Rachel also qualified at the young age of 15 to swim at SA Senior Nationals.

She is an all or nothing type of girl who works relentlessly at her academics, swimming and leadership duties, being elected Head Girl 2015 at Heron Bridge College. Now how is this for the pinnacle of determination: swimming with a broken wrist, working the legs and kicks with a water proof cast on the wrist! Rachel’s heart is to help people and make a difference in the world by becoming a medical doctor and also to be one of the world’s top swimmers. But for now she has just put her faith in the Lord to lead her in her journey and decisions ahead.

Interview

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?

I am seventeen years old. My swimming coach is Gerhard Zandberg, and my club is Gerhard Zandberg Sport Academy. I go to Heron Bridge College, and I have been privileged enough to be Head Girl over the course of 2015. I am very determined and I believe that it is important to do everything with 100% effort, or else not do it at all.

True Leader: Head Girl 2015

True Leader: Head Girl 2015

I started racing competitively at the age of 12, when I qualified for Gauteng schools. I realised that I enjoyed competing, and I started taking part in Central Gauteng Aquatic galas, where I surprised myself and went from one Level 2 Champs , straight into Level 3. I was surrounded by senior swimmers who motivated me, and at my first level 3 nationals I medalled in 50m freestyle. At the age of 15, I qualified for senior nationals in 100m Freestyle and 50m Freestyle. This was definitely a growing experience. At 16 I had a hiccup in my journey as I broke my wrist playing netball and kicked in the pool for 4 months with a waterproof cast. This last year, I changed coaches and rediscovered my passion for the sport. I now swim for Northern Tigers and am thoroughly enjoying it.

Rachel with Coach Gerhard Zandberg

Rachel with Coach Gerhard Zandberg

What is the highest accolade you have received in swimming, and what is your greatest personal accomplishment?

At Level 3 Nationals 2015 in Port Elizabeth, I achieved gold for 50m freestyle for 17-18 years and silver for 100m Freestyle. At Senior Nationals this year in Durban, I came 3rd for 50m freestyle 19&under. It was exciting as I competed in my first final for 100m freestyle and achieved PBs. It was incredible racing against the best swimmers in  South Africa, the likes of Trudi Maree, Karin Prinsloo, Erin Gallagher, Marlies Ross.

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Rachel with Karin Prinsloo

Do you have any specific regimens or rituals in swimming? Maybe a particular diet / training method that can be partially attributed to your success?

In the last year, my training regime changed. My coach and I focus more on strength and race experience, rather than too much mileage. We work off targets rather than distance. I enjoy cross training, such as boxing and running as well. I am a fussy eater, so before competitions I challenge myself to eat more of the energy foods such as broccoli that are not always the tastiest, but are required in order to swim fast.

How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule, especially this being your Matric year?

To be honest, if I did not swim, I would not manage my matric year. Swimming acts as my stress release and after a good training session, I feel awake and ready to conquer my masses of homework. My academics are very important to me, so I have had to sacrifice some time in the pool, unfortunately. At school, I have had the honour of being Head Girl this year, so therefore my swimming has become even more important to me, because it keeps me level-headed.

Besides your swimming, what do you have a passion for?

I have a passion for leading and helping people who cannot help themselves. I discovered these passions in the last six months through my leadership role at school and through my experiences in hospitals, as I want to become a medical doctor someday.

Tell me one thing about Rachel Stevenson that the world does not know?

I love meeting new people. I feel that each person has something new to teach me.

What do you do to relax?

I read a fictional book or dance.

Which athlete/ athletes inspire you?

My swimming coach, Gerhard Zandberg. His perseverance to continue after a major setback inspired me to keep on going after my setback. He also knows me well,knows how to motivate me and he gives me perspective when the going gets tough.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

“You can’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the further you get.” – Michael Phelps

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Just take one step at a time.

What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?

Trying to figure out what my plans are for the near future. I have a goal to become a doctor, but I am not finished swimming yet. I am managing this stress, by taking one step at a time. Applying for my degrees is the only thing I can do it wait and see what the Lord has planned for me.

When you’ve had a tough / bad day, what lifts you up again?

This is going to sound clichéd, but after a hard training session, I am ready to go again. Being around positive people uplifts my spirits as well.

I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from Rachel Stevenson?

Next year my goal is to be studying at TUKS, either a BSc or Medicine. I want to continue competing, and make an international team.

Anything else you would like to share?

I feel like we should not limit ourselves to the expectations of others. It is important to live your life how you want to.

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

Matric Dance 2015

Matric Dance 2015

 

Underwater fun!

Underwater fun!

SA National Level 3 2015_0003

Ready for take off - SA Level 3 - 2015

Ready for take off – SA Level 3 – 2015

 

 

 

Academics Faith Food Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports Swimming

Fresh & Hungry: Ruan Ras

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Introduction

Next up in our Fresh & Hungry Series is Ruan Ras, SWIMMER and Youth Sports brand name in South Africa, I am so delighted to chat to him. He ranks within the elite top 10 in swimming in SA and internationally for his main strokes. In him I sense so much “joie de vivre”. A friendly, open, eager, passionate, determined, most humble and life embracing young champion. Ruan Ras is also one of SA’s brightest minds, a true young academic master who passed his matric – Class of 2014 with flying colours, having obtained 7 Distinctions – “dit wil gedoen wees”, at Tuks Sport High School! This, amazingly while not slacking off at all on his swimming focus during his matric year. The latter almost unbelievable, but indeed proving a point about the multiple value of sports for our youth, confirming that discipline in one area affects all areas of life.

Ruan is a strong willed, determined and balanced athlete, is a true example of inspiration for many of our youth and for me personally. He is grounded and finds his inner strength and peace by his strong Faith in Jesus Christ. He clearly has a resolve of steel, having overcome cancer in 2011, a true champion in and out of the water. He also has a number of overseas meets under his belt that left him deeply inspired to train harder and aim higher. Ruan hits the grindstone daily as he faces his tough first year at university while diligently continuing his swimming training. He really strikes me as one of those people “who just gets on with the task at hand”. As Nike says – Just Do It!

PS – he is also a foodie of note – Ruan, can we expect a nice “Rassie’s Cookbook” from you in the future?

Read on for this amazing full story:

Interview

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?

Being born into a family which is crazy about fitness I have been in the water since I can remember. It was not long until I discovered my passion for the sport and soon started competing in various Mpumalanga galas. In grade 7, I started off at TUKS Swimming with Coach Rocco Meiring, who spotted me through my older sister, Rochelle, who also swam with him. His belief in me is what really, for the first time, stirred my dreams of one day becoming an Olympic swimmer. Since then I have made it a life goal to reach that dream and I am slowly but surely seeing the progress with the help of my current TUKS Coach – Igor Omeltchenko.

Chat with the coach.

Chat with the coach.

What is the highest accolade you have received in swimming, and what is your greatest personal accomplishment?

Placing 5th in the country at last year’s Senior Nationals and finishing 6th in one of my events at the Hong Kong leg of the FINA World Cup 2014.

My greatest personal accomplishment would have to be surviving cancer in 2011. I was diagnosed with burkitt’s lymphoma cancer after spotting a tumor in my stomach. I was out of action for 9 months, but by the grace of God, was able to keep chasing my dreams after being declared clean on January 5th, 2012.

You have travelled outside SA before for swimming. What does travelling do for your mind / perspective on things?

I had my first international competition at the Canet and Barcelona leg of the Mare Nostrum Series last year. I had underestimated the difference between local galas and international meets. When I got there the entire atmosphere around pool deck (as well as the pressure) was heightened. Swimming among many of the greats in the swimming world and watching their races live was an unbelievable learning experience. When I got back to SA, the way I handled myself at local galas had completely changed. The overseas experience definitely gave me a boost of confidence. Racing against the big guys was intimidating, but also showed me how far I still have to go to get to where I want to be – that made me excited to get back into training and to work even harder.  

Later last year I competed at the World Cup in Hong Kong, and from what I had learnt I was able to compose myself and handle the pressure much better than before. Huge stepping stone.

Swimming among many of the greats in the swimming world and watching their races live was an unbelievable learning experience.

Swimming among many of the greats in the swimming world and watching their races live was an unbelievable learning experience.

How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule, especially being at University this year?

I won’t lie, balancing Architecture studies and swimming training is quite tough, but staying focused on the bigger goal gets me through every hurdle at the end of the day. When you are doing things you are passionate about, it doesn’t always seem like hard work.

Beside your swimming, what do you have a passion for?

Like I’ve said, architecture is another major passion, as well as sports, fitness and health in general, but I would have to say food tops the list (especially after a Saturday morning training session).

Tell me one thing about Ruan Ras that the world does not know?

I have a secret way of getting through extremely long, high mileage training sessions: I sing underwater while I swim to keep me energized… Probably the reason why I have been asked numerous times “were you shouting underwater…I heard someone shouting?” (don’t tell my coach…)

What do you do to relax?

Is it bad that food is my answer again? Haha! Also, doing anything with family always helps to calm the nerves.

Which athlete/ athletes inspire you?

Naturally, Ryan Lochte and the level he has reached in swimming has and always will act as a motivator for me. But I usually base my role models on the way people live their lives and not only on their achievements. Karin Prinsloo is one of the few who fit that description. Her humble nature despite having achieved so much in her swimming definitely inspires me. Also, her faith and trust in God and the way in which she gives Him all the glory is something to look up to.

Ruan Tweeted: "Tuks Olympian and role model to many @PrinslooKarin crowded by excited young swimmers for her autograph #inspiration".

Ruan Tweeted: “Tuks Olympian and role model to many @PrinslooKarin crowded by excited young swimmers for her autograph #inspiration”.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

Don’t downgrade your dream to match your reality. Upgrade your faith to match your destiny.

What is your favourite Bible Verse?

Two that got me through 2011: “You can do all things through Christ who gives you strength” – Phil 4.13 and “ ”For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29.11

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Do more of what you love and do it for the Lord.

Quiet Moment of contemplation.

Quiet Moment of contemplation.

What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?

Time management: like I said earlier, trying to juggle academics and swimming. I think it is important to know when you need to keep pushing and when you need to rest. Sometimes rest is the best thing you can do to prevent you from burning out and ultimately giving up. We are not robots – fun is just as important as food and sleep. Read the Bible when you are struggling to cope – it may take some time out of your day, but in the end that’s what will get you through it.

When you’ve had a tough / bad day, what lifts you up again?

Spending some time with family. With a hectic schedule, it is vital that you have a strong support system. If possible, quiet time alone with myself and my Bible always does the trick.

Family time is special.

Family time is special.

Sisterly love.

Sisterly love.

I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from Ruan Ras?

From here on out, its full blown training and late nights of study ahead. I am keen to see my performances at SA short course nationals in July. The main focus right now is to keep edging closer and closer to the World Champs qualifying times (as a personal goal) with every opportunity I get, so that in a few years, that dream can become a reality.

Anything else you would like to share?

Just a message to other swimmers: swimming isn’t your life. It’s a part of your life. Do your best and work as hard as you possibly can, but don’t take it too seriously. It is much easier to be successful in something which you enjoy doing. Thanks again, God bless.

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

Champion Relay Team.

Champion Relay Team.

 

Champion swimmer.

Champion swimmer.

IMG_26512137271627

Ruan Ras: A true Youth Sports Ambassador.

Ruan Ras: A true Youth Sports Ambassador.

 

 

 

Academics Biathle Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports

Meet the Young Athletes: Cayde de Waal

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Introduction:

Each time that I interview one of our young athletes in the meet THE YOUNG ATHLETES SERIES, I am honoured and overwhelmed by this new generation of determined youth that I see emerging – it really humbles, inspires and excites me.

Today marks the shift of gears from swimming to Biathle with the young Cayde de Waal taking centre stage. This little champion is currently the #1 Biathlete in gauteng in his age group (he has just recently won the Northern Gauteng Championships). Biathles (at his age) consist of a 500m run – 50m swim – 500m run with transitions in between each leg.

He brilliantly concluded the last two years on a high note when he finished Top 10 in South Africa – wow! Now he is going full force and training hard, aiming for a Top 5 finish this year in June at Buffalo city. He is also proudly the Schools League champion for his district.

Why is it always that the top athletes often also excel at academics? Cayde is a dedicated academic too, being part of the top 15 in his grade (6). This young man is an all-rounder of note taking part in School Athletics (1200m), Cross Country, Biathle, Swimming and next term it will be cricket. Overall he is a happy, loving, family-orientated little boy who simply loves what he does.

Read on to find out more about this splendid young champion:

Proud champion.

Proud champion.

All rounder

All rounder

Interview:

Who are you, what sport are you passionate about, and in what year were you born?

My name is Cayde de Waal, I was born on the 2nd September 2003 and I am really passionate about Biathle.

At what age did you start biathle and why?

I did my first biathle when I was 9 years old. The reason I started biathle was because I was very good at both swimming and running and biathle is a combination of both of these events.

Would you like to share some highlights about your sports events so far?

My definite highlight would be the first time I qualified to take part at the South African Biathle Championships and finished 10th overall.

 

Little Champion

Little Champion

If you were not going to be involved in biathle what sport do you think you would be involved in?

Soccer or maybe even club swimming.

Tell me a little bit about your home and school life?

I live with my mom, dad and younger sister. I go to Laerskool Dalview which is an afrikaans primary school, even though I am English. I enjoy playing with my friends, especially cricket and touch rugby.

 

sisterly love

sisterly love

How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule?

It is difficult and requires a lot of hard work so I have to listen and work hard when I’m in class. When I get home after school I need to knuckle-down and finish my homework and studies before I can go and train. I definitely do feel that being busy with my sport helps me do better with my academics.

Academic

Academic

 

Tell me about what you like to do to relax?

I like to play TV games and I take my PS Vita everywhere with me. I also enjoy spending time with my friends or watching movies with my family.

What is your favorite food?

My favorite food is Alfredo, especially the one from Pizza Chicken Perfect.

Who is your sports hero in the sports that you are involved in? What have you learned from him / her?

My sports hero is my running coach Justin Opitz. He has taught me that the most important thing is to never give up and never slow down. When you are at your most tired spot during a race, you need to step up your pace just that little bit more and push through.

Apart from (the sports that you are involved in) which other athlete do you admire

AB de Villiers, because he is so talented at so many things.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

“You either make dust or eat dust”, H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Thank you so much Cayde for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for the big Championships coming up in June and beyond. We look forward to following your progress and exciting journey ahead. Blessings!

Fun with good friendies

Fun with good friendies

Fun in the snow

Fun in the snow

Proud champion

Proud champion

 

Champion by land and by water

Champion by land and by water

Durban Champs

Durban Champs

 

Medal time

Medal time

 

Great - finish line in sight

Great – finish line in sight

 

Proudly Team Gauteng

Proudly Team Gauteng

 

Academics Africa Build me a son Faith Frank Home Interviews Our Sons Proudly South African Sharks Soccer Sports

Fresh & Hungry: Frank Heslop

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Introduction

I have decided to do a series of interviews with our young athletes called “Fresh & hungry”. These interviews will feature the “older” young athletes. I will be asking a few more in depth questions compared to the questions asked to the younger athletes in the “Meet the Young Athletes” series. The Fresh & hungry questions will hopefully give some insight into the minds of these young athletes and maybe even reveal a few secrets for us to learn from.

First up in our Fresh & Hungry Series, I speak to Frank Heslop born 26 March 1996, up-and-coming young footballer, ex-swimming champs medallist and dedicated academic, blogger, who currently attends the Sharks Soccer Academy in Durban. He is a Cambridge University matric graduate – class of 2013, currently first year Varsity College student, studying B.Com and Jesus follower.

Read on to see what stirs this young man and what his plans hold for the future……

Interview:

So Frank, you just turned 18, how does that make you feel?

I am not going to lie, I am starting to feel quite old and that time is slowly running away.

You are passionate about your football, tell me a little bit about your football journey up to now.

It has been an amazing journey, from starting out in football and developing a passion for the game. I started out playing club football and then I realised that I want a career in football so I joined an academy and I am still in an academy, so thus far I am living the dream as many people would love to have the opportunity that I have. Football has allowed me to travel in the past, I will always treasure my trip to Brazil a few years back, and hopefully it will allow me to travel in the future.

IMG_1945

You matriculated at the age of 16, how did that make you feel and how did it affect your football?

At that stage the midnight oil was my best buddy! Finishing school early allowed me to focus on my football and take my time with important decisions to make sure that the decisions I make were the best decisions possible.

What are you currently pursuing or what isn’t happening yet that you’re interested in making happen?

I told you, I am feeling quite old now at 18 so I feel it is time for me to break into some professional teams and move on to bigger things such as playing oversees.

Beside your football, what do you have a passion for?

I have a passion for human performance, I want to know what allows people’s bodies to perform the way it does. I am also always trying to figure out how people become or have become good at what they do, I do not fully believe in natural talent. I believe that is either their environment or their hard work that allows them to become so good.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

My father always says “You have to see yourself there (Overseas)”. My Grandfather says “Never give up”. I love this because this is what will determine whether I make it in football or not. Whether I go through ups or downs these two words of advice will determine if I succeed.

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How do you currently manage to balance all the things in your life?

You will hear it all the time and it is no secret “Hard Work and Determination”. If I do not work hard I will not make it.

You have been living away from home since the age of 14 – what life lessons have you learned in this regard?

Firstly I have realised how much I need my family. They are the reason I am where I am. They are my motivation. Secondly life is not fair and if you lack even the slightest bit of confidence you will not succeed. Being away has really helped me put my trust in Jesus to deliver me from all circumstances, and trust me He has come through.

IMG_4208

Family time

Fun with my baby-bro!

Fun with my baby-bro!

 

I see you often post stuff from Eric Thomas – “the hip hop preacher”, do you feel influenced by his life story?

Yeah because he has failed for so long and has never given up. It took him 12 years to get a 4 year degree, so he understands what it feels like to persevere. Many people would not even last 2 years yet he lasted 12. That is not even his full testimony. I love that he uses his testimony to change people’s lives. I love that he stands strong in his faith in Jesus.

Do you think that sports can be a ministry tool by which the lost can be reached?

Yes I do. I believe that sports is a platform to reach out to the lost and preach the Gospel. The whole world watches sports and many people look up to sportsmen and women so therefore they can make an impact on souls.

Tell me one thing about Frank David Heslop that the world does not know?

I enjoy eating bunny chows an Indian dishes.

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Down time!

I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from Frank Heslop?

I am looking forward to the future, I am seeing some huge things happening and I believe that the right doors will open up. I have huge dreams and I believe soon I will be living out these dreams.

Thank you Frank for speaking to me in this interview.  I wish you all the very best blessings for your academic and sports endeavours, and would love to follow your progress and plans for the future.

Blog Posts Written by Frank here:

http://heslopsports.co.za/wp/the-love-language-of-sports/

http://heslopsports.co.za/wp/opportunities-by-frank-heslop/

http://heslopsports.co.za/wp/for-the-love-of-the-game/

Frank in action:

Check out Frank’s Skills on You Tube here

 

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Sea Vacations are the best!

 

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Never found without my footie

Training Time at Sharks

Training Time at Sharks

Front Frank

I am looking forward to the future, I am seeing some huge things happening and I believe that the right doors will open up. I have huge dreams and I believe soon I will be living out these dreams. Frank

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Academics Home Interviews Proudly South African Sports Swimming

Meet the Young Athletes: Chloe Preston

Published by:

Introduction

Continuing in our series “Meet the young athletes”, next up is the young, determined and brilliant Chloe Preston, multitasker of note, and multi-talented too! A fun loving young lady, with a very gentle spirit and one who loves people. She is a scholar at St Ursula’s Primary School in Krugersdorp where she has for the past two years walked away  as the top academic achiever for her grade, plus the Junior swimmer of the year awards for the last two years. She is one who is learning from an early age to manage her time wisely, and managing to excel in both academics and sports. She is excited to take her swimming to a new level and has recently added club swimming to her wide array of activities.

Read on to find out more about this blooming young champion!

Interview

Who are you, what sport are you passionate about, and how old are you?

I am Chloe Preston, I love swimming, and I turned 11 on 16 April 2015.

At what age did you start swimming and why?

I learned to swim when I was about three years old, because I have always loved water. I enjoy swimming in school galas, it especially feels good when I win my events.

Would you like to share some highlights about your sports events so far?

A highlight for me was when I received the Junior Swimmer of the year award at school in 2013 and 2014.

photo

If you were not going to be involved in swimming, what sport do you think you would be involved in?

If I did not take part in swimming I would play hockey or do athletics.

Tell me a little bit about your home and school life?

During the week it is super crazy, because I have school until 2pm, then swimming from 3.15-4.30pm, Mon-Thurs. After that I have to do homework or study. On a Monday and Thursday I also go to Kumon, for extra Maths. On Fridays I go to Guides after school and then have guitar lessons at 5.30pm. This is all because of my amazing mum, she always gets me to school and extra-murals on time. She teaches me how to manage my time.

Tell me about what you like to do to relax?

Over the weekends I relax and spend time with my family. For relaxation I like to listen to music, read books, play games and take long drives with my family.

What is your favorite food? And who must cook it?

My favourite food is any good Italian food cooked by my parents.

Who is your sports hero in the sports that you are involved in? What have you learned from him / her?

Cameron van der Burgh, I learned from him that if you train hard it can get you to the Olympics.

What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

With hard work comes great rewards. Practice makes perfect.

photo 2

 

Young academic

Young academic

photo

 

 

 

 

 

Academics Home Libraries Proudly South African Sports

SA Library Week 2015

Published by:

South Africa celebrates National Library Week during 14 – 21 March 2015 with the theme “Connect @ your library”. The official launch takes place in Cape Town on 13 March at Centre for the book.

Is it not beautiful how certain things in life just seamlessly connect and knit people of diverse walks of life together, things like books, libraries and the love of reading. I am a firm library advocate and with this post I want to emphasize again to our youth in general and to our young athletes, the importance of being a reading generation of young people.

Do not get so overwhelmed in your compulsory school / university reading, or sports activities that quiet reading time is neglected. I am not sure if libraries are still considered “cool” among our youth, but I dare you, go to your local library and start a trend of being cool at your library!

Why not treat yourself and find libraries in your communities to visit and use the visit to connect with peers your age, your broader community and much more. I take particular pride our National Library of South Africa in Pretoria. A true beauty to behold, inspiring, a feast for the eye, a hub of wonderful paper and electronic information, a caring group of people and a real sense of “Connect @ your library”.

Young athletes – keep reading, keep studying, enlarge your horizons, broaden your experiences, get motivated, get educated, and fuel your dreams.

Library Week 2015 Poster IMAGE

Young athletes – keep reading, keep studying, enlarge your horizons, broaden your experiences, get motivated, get educated, and fuel your dreams.

Image courtesy of The Library and Information Association of South Africa – www.liasa.org

 

Build me a son Frank Home Our Sons Proudly South African Sharks Soccer Sports

For The Love Of The Game

Published by:

For The Love Of The Game by Frank David Heslop

Check out Frank’s Skills on You Tube here

I thought quite hard on how I should start off and what I should write about in my first essay and then it hit me. I thought let me start with how I started off in sport.

I remember as a child why I used to play the beautiful game. It was never about achieving anything great in the beginning, yet I trained so damn hard as if I was trying to achieve something though. On the journey of becoming a sportsman (high school years), I started on a high note but then I suddenly reached a tough patch. I have had some tough fighting, situations that I could not see myself overcoming. The thought of giving up would sometimes find its way into my thoughts, but I always had great people in my life to keep me going.

I would fall down and pick myself up again and again, with the help of my great family. Yet one thing I did not learn was to overcome the disappointment and anger of falling. Falling is the best way to learn and develop. However one needs to learn to fall without hurting oneself so badly that it takes too long to recover. This was the biggest problem with me at the time: that when I fell it would take something valuable away from me and I would either not recover properly or take too long to recover.

So to get back to the point of why I used to play the beautiful game as a child. It was because I loved playing it. I had no one telling me that I should give up because I am not good enough and even if I did I would not even care because I was playing the game for the right reason, because I loved it. I did not care about the coach’s or anyone’s opinion, I just wanted to play because it brought me joy. I could spend hours outside or in the yard kicking the ball around because of the love I had for the game.

Now whenever you in a tough patch in your sports career, remember why you started playing the sport in the first place and try to play it exactly the same way that you did as a child, with joy and happiness. Then when you fall, you will fall with joy and even though you might get hurt falling you will always be able to get back up. Picture a baby trying to transition from crawling to walking, they will fall a thousand times, sometimes they laugh and sometimes they cry but they will always fall just hard enough to pick themselves back up again.

My final words are the most important of all from 1 John 4:7-8. It says; “Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love”. At the end of this scripture it says that “God is love” meaning that if you play with love and for love, you are playing with God and for God because He is love and He has created love. So that feeling you get whenever you feel as if you enjoying the sport or game so much that you say you love it, that is God right by you guiding you because you are playing with Him by your side.

Frank Heslop

Frank Heslop

Frank training at the Sharks

Frank training at the Sharks

Frank in action for the Sharks

Frank in action for the Sharks

Frank in action for the Sharks

Frank in action for the Sharks

http://youtu.be/qY4L_fOppos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Evi9y74A0s

 

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