Job title Sailing
Employer Mintridge Foundation
Hannah Diamond started sailing at 6 years old, having been brought up surrounded by boats, and began racing at 9 years old. Her first international competition was at the age of 12 and then Hannah went on to represent Great Britain at World and European Championships at both junior and youth level, twice winning the Female Youth European Championships in the double handed 29er class.
After graduating from university, Hannah began a full-time campaign for the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class. This was the first compulsory mixed class in sailing at the Olympic Games and Hannah and her helm went on to win a silver medal at the World Championships and several other international medals.
Here Hannah outlines how to get into sailing and offers advice to aspiring young athletes looking for a professional career in sport.
What does it take to forge a professional career in sport?
Dedication, determination and a good work ethic.
Your advice to young people on how to achieve success…
Motivation: You might not enjoy every single day on the water but you’ll learn more from the hard days than the easy ones so try and think of it as you’re either having fun on the water or you’ll be getting better so every day is a win!
Confidence: Waivers in even the most dominant champions. Control the controllables and you’ll be in good shape.
Fitness: You never want to turn up at a regatta and feel as though you could be fitter if you had trained smarter – everyone hurts on day 5/6 but if you can hurt a little less your decision making will be far better so put the time and effort in during the winter and reap the rewards in the summer racing months.
Nutrition: Many sailors struggle with eating on the water in between races – this will affect you at the end of the regatta so prepare before racing starts as you don’t want to spend time after a big race day thinking about food for the next day!
Advice for Young Athletes Attending a Trial…
Nerves are ok, if it’s a subjective trial for a big team then think about what attributes/ skills you think they are looking for and how you can demonstrate that you have them. If it is a results based selection then make sure your pre-regatta preparation is good and then keep it simple, don’t over complicate your strategy because there is something riding on the results.
Best advice you were given?
Leave no stone unturned – have you covered all bases with your training and preparation?
Hannah Diamond is an Ambassador for The Mintridge Foundation a registered charity dedicated to enhancing life skills in young people through sport. They provide a support network for young people by harnessing the power of positive sporting role models. For more information on how they can support your sports programme visit their website.
More advice on how to become a professional sports athlete…
Football – Fil Kamps
Gymnastics – Grace Harrison
Judo – Nekoda Davis
Hockey – Shona McCallin MBE
Wheelchair Basketball – Jordan Jarrett Bryan
Cricket – Patrick Foster
Trap Shooting – Georgina Roberts
Archery – Danielle Brown MBE
Athletics – Iona Lake
Basketball – Marko Backovic
Climbing – Molly Thompson-Smith