"The training we get is incredible and our lecturers are so lovely, if you are struggling in the slightest they will help you as best they can"
Katelyn O’Brien from Ballyboughal, Co. Dublin is a first year Health & Physical Activity Student at DkIT.
Katelyn is a GAA & Soccer Sports Scholar at DkIT. Katelyn plays in the midfield/forward position with Ballyboughal GFC and midfield for DkIT GAA, as well as midfield for DkIT Soccer.
Speaking about her training programme, Katelyn says;
I would be on the field Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday - sometimes twice on the same day, between training and matches. I do gym work Monday, Tuesday and Thursday and then recovery would be built into after trainings and matches and then I would do my own practice and recovery over the weekend."
Katelyn, who competes with all 3 teams she plays for, says her training sessions are intense but worth it;
Every training session is intense to me. As someone always use to say to me what you put in you get out of it. Matches are even more intense as you leave nothing on that pitch.”
Katelyn was first introduced to football at a very young age before she started playing with Ballyboughal when she was 7 years old. Since then, Katelyn has accomplished a lot in her sporting career including playing for Dublin U17 in 2017, Dublin Minors in 2018, and winning the DkIT Sports Ladies’ person of the month in 2019.
Playing for Dublin was a dream come true. It wasn’t easy. it took a lot of hard work and dedication. I would be down on the pitch before training and the days training wasn’t on I would be on the pitch practicing. When I finally made it to play for Dublin it was just unbelievable putting on the blue jersey. Being part of such a great team filled with the best players in county Dublin and traveling around the country to play different teams. The competition was so high, every match, every training was filled with such high intensity it was an experience of a lifetime.”
Speaking about winning DkIT Sports Ladies’ person of the Month, Katelyn says;
It was an honour to win DKIT ladies sports person of the month. When I started college in September, I started playing for the DKIT GAA and Soccer ladies teams and loved it. It probably was my best start to a year as I was injury free at the time and I got nominated after a few games and there was a few of us from different sports. There was a voting and I got a text from Derek to say I won sports ladies person of the month - it was unbelievable I was shocked when I got the text I couldn’t believe it, it was incredible.”
Speaking about what it is like to be a sports scholarship student at DkIT, Katelyn says that the staff give a lot of support to sports scholars;
It’s an honour to be a sports scholarship student. The staff in DKIT are so nice and would do anything for you. Derek and all the team in the sports office are incredible anything you need they will help you in the best way they can. The training we get is incredible and our lectures are so lovely if you are struggling in the slightest they will help you as best they can.”
It can be difficult to find the balance between study and sports, but Katelyn finds that training helps her to focus more on her studies and find the right balance;
It’s all about having a balance it can get hard but what I do is I try do a bit before training and then a bit after training, I find training clears my head and I do be more fresh to do it after training it is so important to keep up sport no matter how hard studies get.”
Katelyn has just finished her first year of BSc (Hons) in Health & Physical Activity and hopes to go on to complete further study to be a PE teacher or a Physiotherapist after her Level 8 degree.
I have just finished my first year of Health & Physical activity. It’s a great course and is a steppingstone into many opportunities. I am enjoying the course and have made great friends. I would recommend this course because you learn so much and if you have an interest in sports this is the course for you. I prefer the practical work, but I have to say this course has a range of many modules which is so good and it gives you a range on what you would like to proceed in.”