Birmingham student, Gina Akpe-Moses, has big plans to reach the next Olympics after completing an exclusive sports programme for the country’s most promising athletes.
Alongside her applied science course, the 17-year old BMet student participated in the Advanced Level Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence (AASE) and is now in athletics training for Tokyo 2020.
The course provides a structured training and development route across a number of sports for talented young athletes aged 16-19. Athletes receive support with the appropriate technical, tactical, physical and psychological aspects of their sport. The programme also address wider issues such as lifestyle, career development and communication skills.
Gina said: “The programme has been really helpful with everything from sports psychology to nutrition and I feel like I’m actually getting faster every time I train.”
Gina competes at the 100m and 200m level and recently participated at the European Athletics under-20 Championships in Tbilisi, Georgia. She hopes the experience and current training with AASE can now help her go a step further.
“I’m dedicated to perfecting my technique. There’s still four years to go till Tokyo, so I have plenty of time yet – though I know I’ll have to work very hard.”
Despite Gina’s last sports season being hampered by injury, she is determined to continue her training with her mentors, who were both also young athletes, and improving her performance.
“I know that I can’t just rely on talent anymore and training is a big part of getting to my goal”, she continued. “There’s a lot of competition now and I’m constantly being pushed to better myself by my mentors.”
Gina hopes to continue her passion for science at university alongside her training, when she graduates from BMet.
More than 20 sports are currently involved in the AASE, including football, rugby union, rowing, boxing, tennis, swimming, and disability sports.