Kaitlyn Ashmore is the definition of a high achiever.
Not only is she a star in the AFLW circuit (and a part of the Brisbane Lions team that took on the winning Adelaide squad in the inaugural AFLW grand final last year), but she's also a former javelin titleholder, has black belt in karate and is a primary school teacher on the side.
Plus, the 26-year-old has just teamed up with Cotton On Body to release their first ever High Impact Workout Bra, created in consultation with the AFLW players (Cotton On is an official partner of the AFLW Women’s comp).
But Kaitlyn took a bit of time out from her pre season prep to chat to us about inspiring up and coming female footy players and her surprising artistic talents.
How did you come to play footy? Were you always a fan of the sport?
I’ve always loved footy and followed Richmond since I was little. When I was growing up in Ballarat, there was no footy for girls. Most of the girls who played footy, played with the boys. But once they got to a certain age, they weren’t allowed to continue. I would just kick the footy with dad out on the front lawn.
I started playing footy when I went to high school. In year 12, a friend of our coach came to watch one of our games and asked if I was interested in joining a women’s team that had formed in Ballarat – The North Ballarat Eagles.
What’s been the highlight of your footy career so far?
I’ve had a few great moments throughout my career and picking just one would be hard. I would have to say being a part of the inaugural AFLW season and being so successful with the Brisbane Lions.
What are your goals for 2018?
My goals for this year as a team would be to take out the premiership. As an individual, I just want to improve on my strengths and weaknesses out on the field.
Do you have any strategies that help you deal with pressure? Any pre-game rituals?
I found that last year when I would line up for goal in a game, I would be overwhelmed with pressure. All preseason I’ve been working on strategies to block that out. Deep breaths in and focusing on a point in the distance. I like to keep my pre game rituals simple and try not to over complicate. Morning coffee, a stroll, and once I’m at the ground I like to have a kick and pop on my earphones and listen to music.
Any advice for young girls and women who want to play sport professionally?
Be brave and take risks. By doing this, you can create your own opportunities. Always aim for success.
What does your training regime look like?
In the off season I’m a primary school teacher in Victoria, mainly relief teaching in Coburg. During the AFLW season, I live in Brisbane and put most of my time into the up and coming season. Our training week includes three field sessions on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and then two gym sessions on Tuesday and a Thursday. Squeeze in recovery around those times.
How do you like to unwind?
I love watching movies. Either at home or at the cinemas. Takes my mind off things for a couple of hours.
What’s something that most people don’t know about you?
I love to draw. I’ve painted a mural of the ninja turtles on the play room wall at home for my nephews.
You can shop Cotton On Body's new comfortable, supportive and affordable High Impact Workout Bra here for $29.95.