Interview with Basketball Player, Scott Johnson from Loughborough University

Scott Johnson is a second year student, studying International Relations at Loughborough University. He plays Basketball for the 3rds and 4ths (playing BUCS and local league).

1) How long have you been playing basketball for?

I’ve been playing it since i was about five or six so for fifteen years. I first started playing it because I saw Space Jam with Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan and I thought that it looked fun. So then my dad looked up local junior teams and I went to train at one every Saturday for three hours.

2) What is it like to compete for Loughborough University?

It’s great. The good things for me personally are that it is a higher level than what I have played, so feels like I’m really improving as it’s a challenge.

3) What has your season been like?

It has been personally good. I have had some bad games but feel like I am getting better. As a team we have won six in a row now so I’m pleased.

4) Which position do you play?

I play in a position called centre. I guess it is comparable in Netball to GS or GK.

5) Have you got any big games coming up?

The 3s season in BUCS has finished so I am playing in the 4s now. We are still in the cup and in a few weeks we play the Leicester police team.

6) What is a training week like for you?

We have two slots in SDW per week, one two hour training on Wednesdays then normally a match or two hour training on Fridays. But we can book court time personally as well.

7) What is your favourite thing about playing Basketball?

I  feel like it is an incredibly tough sport, as it’s very physical and athletic as well as needing good skills. When I play well I feel like I have acheived something and really pushed myself.

8) Do you have anyone in Basketball who inspires you?

My brother played well here (at Loughborough University) for three years and has gone on to play at a high level in London so he inspires me. It is easy to be inspired by people at Loughborough as well who have really improved.

9) Do you wish to continue to play at a high level after university?

Well I know for sure that I will continue to play, as playing here has only made me love it more. I hope to but it all depends on how much I develop.

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Interview with Zen Lee, a Kickboxer at Loughborough University

Zen Lee is a second year student studying Economics at Loughborough University. He started kickboxing just under three years ago, and is now three times Ecka National Kickboxing Champion, 2013 University National Kickboxing champion, and 2014 British Champion.

1)    What motivates you?

 Training motivates me, I love training. I love the stretching, the kicking, the combinations you learn, the atmosphere, and the people. That’s what motivates me.

2)    How often do you train?

I train three times a week with two hour sessions. Occasionally I do extra training in my room or with my friend.

3)    Do you have a particular focus in training?

I mainly focussing on improving my kicking, and my fitness, those two are my main focuses when I train.

4)    So you have a special diet you follow?

Not really, because I only thought of kickboxing as a hobby, I didn’t really take it seriously. But now that I’ve got a chance of achieving something big I will start eating healthier.

5)    What is it like coaching?

Interesting because I’ve had students walk through the door who have never done anything physical in their life and others who have trained longer than I have, so I’ve had to find that balance that keeps everyone going to that next level without others feeling left behind. It really shows me how much I think I know against how much I actually know.

6)    Do you have any advice for people wanting to get into kick boxing?

Just get involved as it’s so rewarding both physical and mentally.

7)    What is it like competing for Loughborough University?

It’s exciting, being team captain I’ve always got to lead by example, and I’ve being doing a good job of that so far.

8)    What is your favourite thing about the fight nights?

My favourite thing is not knowing the outcome.

9)    Have you any competitions coming up?

I’ve got the university championship in three weeks, and a few others but the big one is the Europeans in Spain where I’ll be fighting for GB. Because I won the British championship, I got invited to the GB squad sessions

10)  Are you excited?

Yeah I’ve been looking forward to it since I heard about it a few months ago.

11)  What is training with GB like?

It starts next week, but I’m sure it’s going to be intense.

Thank you Zen, and best of luck in your competitions!

Interview with Dancer and Loughborough University’s Dance Show Coordinator, Hannah Redfern

Hannah is currently in her third year of studying Sport and Exercise Science. She has been dancing since she was four years old. Hannah has done a variety of dance styles including ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary along with some others!

1)      What is your favourite type of dance and why?

Ballet is without a doubt my favourite style of dance to both watch and perform. I think ballet dancers are incredible athletes and it’s such a beautiful art form.

2)      What do you love most about dancing and why?

Shows!! I absolutely love performing on stage, hence why I took on the role of show co-ordinator- I really wanted to have a go at creating my own! I am a really arty person so loved getting creative when producing the show- not something I usually get to do on a science course!

3)      As the shows coordinator what did your role entail? Was it challenging?

My role included designing and producing all the promotional aspects of the performance so things like posters, programmes and T-shirts as well as choreographing the opening and closing routines for the whole club. I also had to hire venues and staff, create a theme, liaise with teachers and random other bits of organising such as DVDs and tickets! It was definitely more fun than stressful (except the last week!). The amazing people I had supporting me certainly made my life alot easier! The staff from LSU Media and the LSU Tech Crew have been particularly great so a massive thank you to those guys!

4)      What was your favourite part of the dance show?

From an organisational point of view I loved seeing all of my ideas and designs coming together in the flesh, which was so rewarding! The fact that we sold out twice and were almost full on the remaining night was really great to see and all the hype and support on social media was overwhelming- nice to see people appreciating all the effort everyone from LSUDC put into the show!

5)      How were the rehearsals?

Rehearsals were long and tiring! I worked out I did 48 hours of dance the week before/of the show and I would just like to thank all the dancers again for the time and hard work they put in! The teachers and committee also deserve a massive thank you for their dedication all year round and to making the club as successful as it is!

6)      What is your favourite thing about being in LSU Dance?

The people without a doubt, everyone is so lovely and friendly- we are a very sociable club! I have also loved having the opportunity to teach and be a part of the committee. From organising the show I have learnt just how lucky we are to have such an amazing Students Union here in Loughborough and it is lovely to have gained more insight into areas which I didn’t know much about before!

7)      Now it is over what is next in store? The competition coming up?

Yes we have our competition soon! If you enjoyed ‘Let’s go to the Movies!’ and want to see your favourite dances again, make sure you come along to our LSU Dance Competition in Sir David Wallace on Sat 8th and Sunday 9th March. It is the biggest university Dance competition in Britain and its always such a great weekend, there is a big social in Room 1 on Saturday night too which is open to all!

8)      What was your favourite dance on the night and why?

Matilda was my favourite one to dance in as I loved acting like a child every night! However I also loved watching the ‘Happy Feet’ Penguin tappers choreographed by our award winning tap teacher and vice chair Faye!

9)      How was it on the night and being on stage?

The show nights ran really smoothly actually which was nice as it meant I wasn’t panicking before going on stage! Dancing was so much fun but the weekend just went way too quickly! Again, a HUGE thank you to anyone involved in any way, it has been an incredible experience and I have loved every second of it! Anyone thinking of joining LSUDC next year, you would be MAD not too! 

Interview with Dancer, Natasha Tavani after the Loughborough University Dance Show

Natasha is a second year student, studying English at Loughborough University. She recently participated in the fabulous LSU Dance Show. Natasha started dancing at the young age of three doing baby ballet. She then picked up modern and tap which she did until thirteen years old. Then she moved onto doing GCSE Dance which was mainly contemporary. She did this for two years then took a short break before starting again with LSU Dance.

What is your favourite type of dance?

I really like  watching ballet, but I think I enjoy performing jazz and hip-hop most.

What was your favourite type of dance in the dance show?

Tricky one! All the dances had different parts which I loved doing, but I guess Jazz was my favourite to dance.

What was the atmosphere like backstage at the dance show?

There were lots of nerves! But so much fun, everybody was supportive! There were lots of quick changes, so it was all very manic.

How was being onstage on the night?

It was terrifying but exhilarating. I get really nervous but it was very fast paced and you didn’t really get time to think about what you were doing! It was so much fun though, the cheers from the audience were great!

What was your favourite part?

My favourite part was the finale as everybody was on stage. It was really fun and relaxed with everyone dancing, cheering and bowing. It was great.

How were rehearsals?

They were really fun! It was great to see what everyone else had been up to since October! All of the girls in the club are so talented.

Any dance events coming up?

There is a competition in two weeks time. So many universities from all over the country are involved. There will be over 1000 students competing. It is held here, at Loughborough University.

Are you excited for it?

I’m really excited. It should be so much fun! We’ve got a social planned for the Saturday as well, which will be absolutely great.