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12 Dec 2019

Five Minutes with Hinewai Knowles

Five Minutes with Hinewai Knowles

Author: Page Admin  /  Categories: News  / 

The 17-year-old athlete impressed by completing the senior girls 100m and 100m hurdles double at the New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships in Wellington earlier this month. We find out more about the Cambridge Harrier, who also collected the national under-18 100m hurdles title earlier this year.

What is your best athletics quality?
 My ability to use my adrenalin and to lift my performance when it matters most.

Why would you encourage anyone to try athletics?
Athletics is a sport where anyone can get involved because it is not restricted to one skill. You can be a thrower, a sprinter, an endurance runner or a jumper. Also, this is an inclusive sport - we have many Para athletes who also show their skills and strengths.

Who was your first coach and how did they influence your career?
My first coach is my current coach, Mike Guest. He has been coaching me for four years now. How has he influenced my sporting career? Well, put it this way, in Year 9 I competed in the NZSSA nationals and I came close to last in both 100m and 80m hurdles. The following year, under Mike's guidance, I won gold for 80m hurdles and bronze in the 100m. He has helped develop my determination, my work ethic, my technique and he always makes training fun. I have never heard Mike say anything negative. Mike and Joanne Guest (our squad manager) make training a positive experience.

What are your athletics weaknesses?
I have a few weaknesses, but Mike doesn't dwell on my weaknesses. 

What is the funniest things you’ve seen on an athletics track?
I can't think of anything specific, but we are always laughing in training so there is always something funny going on at the track. Training is NEVER boring!

What is your favourite athletics session?
I love rope-runs - this is when I run with a rope around my hips with someone behind holding the rope and causing resistance by trying to hold me back.

What is the greatest thing you’ve witnessed in an athletics stadium?
The greatest thing happens every year when I witness how many secondary school students turn up to the NZ secondary nationals. I love seeing that number of students all come together at one event from all over Aotearoa and the Pacific Islands.

Who has been your toughest rival?
I know it sounds clichéd, but my biggest rival is myself. The reason I think this is because you never know who is going to be faster than you in your next race, so I always aim to be better than my previous race, whether mentally or physically. I do enjoy training with Liam McKee (a 16-year-old hurdler and club-mate) as he is "slightly" faster than me and very fast out of the blocks. He is one to watch for the future.

If you could star in another sport which sport would it be?
I couldn't choose another sport, as I play a few other sports for fun. This is the sport I love the most - I love the adrenalin rush of the hurdles.

When travelling to a meeting what is the most important item in your suitcase?
My spikes.

What is your greatest regret?
I don't really have any regrets, as a Christian I believe that God leads me to where I am supposed to be.

Who is the person who you most admire?
My Nana (I am named after her). She was a single mum who worked many jobs, made many sacrifices and worked hard. So if it wasn't for my Nan, my whānau probably wouldn't be where we are today.

What are you most scared of?
Losing my whanau.

What is your favorite movie and why?
I don't have one favorite movie, but I love romantic comedies and action movies.

When was the last time you looked at your athletics medals?
When I last cleaned my room. The only time I look at my medals is when I move them to clean my room.

 

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