If there’s any sport that requires complete and total commitment from its athletes to achieve results, it’s swimming.
For 15-year-old Isabella Green, that means she must juggle seven training sessions a week, sometimes twice a day, with attending St Mary Star of the Sea College and maintaining excellent grades in the classroom.
Green admits it can be hard to manage at times, not that those at the school have noticed.
“To have someone achieve what Isabella has achieved this year is outstanding,” St Mary’s sports coordinator Belinda Sparks said. “Swimming is a very cut-throat sport, you have to train very hard and placings can come down to fractions of a second.
“Isabella has stayed level-headed, set her goals and worked really hard to earn these achievements. Aside from being good in the pool, she’s a fantastic student. She’s a hard worker in class and while it can be hard with her training program, she always stays up to date with her schoolwork.”
Despite the training and school commitments, Green has been able to both excel at school and achieve significant improvements in the pool throughout the past six months.
The year 10 student claimed four gold medals, a silver and a bronze at the NSW Combined Catholic Colleges Championships and was named 15 Years Age Champion at the competition.
Green then backed up the achievement with a bronze medal in the 15 years 100 metre freestyle and a fourth place in the 50m freestyle at last month’s NSW All Schools Championships.
While the sport of swimming requires complete commitment in order to excel, Green says the benefits from competing in the sport far outweigh the sacrifices she is forced to make.
“I just love competing and making heaps of friends,” Green said. “Through swimming competitions I’ve met new people from Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, all across Australia and it’s nice after we compete to shake hands, be good sports and catch up.