The second athlete we are supporting as part of our new Empowering Performance initiative is Anastasia Davies.
Anastasia is a 100m hurdler and completes internationally for Great Britain. Last year she competed in the European under 23 championships and is looking to gain a place on the senior GB team in 2022.
Read our interview with Anastasia to find out where her passion for hurdling started, how often she trains and what it means to her to be a motive8 ambassador.
Empowering Performance offers bespoke support packages that cover training, funding, physiotherapy, financial support and kit packages to help athletes reach their goals.
How did your passion for hurdling start?
I tried athletics at secondary school and competed at a few local inter schools’ competitions in the flat sprints. After joining my local club, Blackheath & Bromley, I eventually started training with my current coach, John Blackie, who suggested that I try triple jump and hurdles as I came from a gymnastics background. I really enjoy hurdling as it’s quite a technical event and there’s always elements you can tweak and improve on.
What’s been your most memorable experience as a young athlete so far?
Competing at the European under 23 championships in 2021 was definitely an incredible experience. The high level of competition, the atmosphere and getting to represent team GB were some of the highlights from the trip to Estonia. Being able to see how the training sessions have been paying off so far was satisfying and something that has helped motivate me through this block of winter training.
Can you talk us through a typical week of training?
I have track sessions on Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and sometimes Sunday (depending on competition schedules). The track sessions alternate between pure hurdle work and/ or flat sprints work. The flat sprint work is important for elements such as speed in-between hurdle flights and acceleration out of the blocks. Whilst the hurdle training involves improving technical aspects such carrying speed over the hurdles and bringing both the trail and lead leg down quickly.
Currently our gym session is on Thursdays, which includes training with weights applicable to the time of season. Tuesdays are mainly for hurdle mobility and medicine ball exercise sessions.
What does it mean to you to be a motive8 ambassador?
Having met the team, I’m thrilled to be working with a group of people who are invested in the development of athletes. I really appreciate being amongst one of the first athletes to benefit from their new Empowering Performance programme.
How will motive8’s Empowering Performance programme help you to reach your sporting goals?
On a financial level motive8 are helping me cover some of the key costs of training and competing such as track pass, competition entry fees and accommodation/travel. I also have the opportunity for regular physio sessions and gym access/home training equipment should I need it.
I’ve also received some groovy kit from On which will be used in both training and competitions.
Favourite piece of equipment (or ‘go to exercise’) that you include in most of your strength sessions?
Simple but effective, resistance bands – they are super useful as well as portable. They’re great for hip and glute activation exercises, which I do before most sessions and competitions.
What advice would you give to those just starting out?
Patience. When starting a new sport, or even switching events within a sport, having the patience not to rush the fundamentals is important. And even when the foundations are in place, keep persisting and progressing at your own pace. Of course, that’s easier said than done, but important to bear in mind.
How do you motivate yourself to train on those tough days or early-mornings?
Personally, I know the effort I put into each of my training sessions will be reflected when I compete. So, in order to reach my goals and race well I know I need to put in the work, especially during those harder sessions.
Tell us two things about you that people might not know…
I’m a graphic designer at a digital PR company; I work on data visualisation/ making information engaging. I also quite like learning languages. I think it’s important to have different outlets which keeps everything in balance.
Who are your sporting inspirations?
I did gymnastics growing up, so Beth Tweddle was an inspiration of mine when I was younger. From an athletics point of view the likes of Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Dina Asher-Smith are both fantastic role models. It’s inspiring to watch the journey of some of the best British track & field athletes in history, in real time.
Where do you hope to be two years from now?
I would like to be making senior GB teams and competing to the best of my abilities.