In the final post in this series, we chat to Elite Netball Academy’s head coach and founder Anna Carter to find out how the fear of missing out got her into the game and what advice she would give to her younger self.
What’s your earliest netball memory?
Attending my first netball practice at junior school, I didn’t want to go as I preferred football and felt netball was too much of a girly game for me. However, all my friends started going and I was worried about missing out so along I went. Even now, I remember everything about the session like it was yesterday, fair to say after that, I was hooked.
Who inspired you to chase your netball dream?
Marion Lofthouse was a coach of mine and was an inspiration to me as a young player whatever came out of her mouth in my opinion was law. She inspired, educated and gave every player she worked with a passion to be better. I was very fortunate to have Marion as a coach and now a dear friend. Marion saw the game like no one else I’d worked with before and understood what it took to become an England player. As I went into coaching, she was and still is a mentor to me and has shaped how I work with players and coaches now.
What has netball taught you?
Netball has taught me a lot, in fact, I could write a novel about every aspect of netball. The most important thing netball has taught me is to enjoy your successes. I’ve been lucky to win a number of things as a player and a coach, but my eye has always been on the next ambition or project, you must allow yourself time to process, pat yourself and your teammates on the back and say “well done, that was pretty awesome.”
If you weren’t a netballer, what would you do?
I love health and fitness and also supporting people to reach their goals, so I would have looked into a personal trainer or strength and conditioner. In fact, I’m studying for a personal training qualification at the moment!
What’s your favourite netball moment to date?
Winning National Clubs u19’s for the first time with YWCA Bury as a player, a long story with lots of personal things going on in the background but against all the odds we won.
Any pre-game superstitions you can’t drop?
I’ve never bought into superstitions just had a strong and consistent game day routine as a player and a coach that I’ve improved on and refined over the years!
And finally, what would you say to your ten-year-old self in relation to life goals and netball?
A number of things but firstly have self-belief in your ability and what you want to achieve. I always worked hard on the court and always did the training that was asked of me and I don’t think you can ever regret working hard and leaving it all out there. Always look at how your can progress your performance the job is never done, as high-performance players and coaches you have to continuously look at how to evolve and improve.
Be a positive influence in the environment you work in, as a player I liked a good moan and could be very critical. I wish now I’d been more positive and looked at how I could support and improve the environment rather than criticize it. And finally, enjoy the ride more, being a player doesn’t last forever but the achievements and the wins are there forever, take the time to celebrate them.
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