Performance Coach & Football Sports Scientist
Connor has clocked up over 1500 hours on the Coach and Volunteering Academy portal for his responsibilities with Loughborough Sport over the last 5 years. This has included working with the Loughborough 2's and 3's Women's football team as a Sport Scientist and performance coach as well as being the head coach of the AU Swimming Squad and assistant coach to the performance squads.
Tell us a little bit about yourself (hobbies, interests and background):
I live in Cornwall and love the outdoors especially for long walks and going to the beach. One of my main hobbies is playing and watching sport! Studying sport and exercise science-related subjects has enabled me to further expand my knowledge of the underpinnings of sporting excellence alongside how to also improve athletic performance. I enjoy watching most sports including team sports such as football, rugby, basketball, and netball, as well as individual sports such as swimming, athletics, and cycling.
How did you first get involved in volunteering within sport at Loughborough?
When I retired from competitive swimming in my placement year with Loughborough I wanted to get involved, gain experience and help give something back to the university for the opportunities the team gave me. Through volunteering, I was able to gain experience in coaching elite swimmers as well as organising and coaching my own squad of 30.
What Sports volunteering did you get involved in whilst at Loughborough?
I have been involved with session planning, leading and assisting sessions to performance and AU athletes. I have also been able to coach swimmers at competitions such as BUCS and the University Swimming League as well as coaching on a training camp at the Gloria Sports Arena in Antalya, Turkey.
What was your experience volunteering like whilst at Loughborough?
Amazing! I have been supported by all members of staff in the program and CVA in order for me to do the best job I can as well as learn and develop over the years I have been involved in volunteering.
How do you think being involved in sports volunteering has helped you develop and progress (Personally and professionally)?
By giving me the opportunities to get involved with different roles within the Loughborough Swimming program including the responsibility of having my own Athletic Union squad whilst also learning and developing my own coaching philosophy by being mentored by senior coaches of the team. This has helped me to improve students performances in the pool as well as the overall experience of students at Loughboorugh University.
What’s the best advice you could give to a Loughborough student looking to gain the most out of their university experience & prepare for their career?
Don't be afraid to get involved! Don't be scared of approaching members of staff because as well as the valuable experience you will gain you will also be helping them out by taking some of the workload off them!
Finally, what have you enjoyed most about volunteering?
To see happy students and help them enjoy their time in the Loughborough Sport program regardless of whether they perform in the pool or not.
Feeling inspired by Connor's experience? Check out the CVA Portal regularly for opportunities like his.