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  • Writer's pictureRebecca Fawcett-Smith

Rising Swimming Star, Jessica Mouatt

Jessica Mouatt got one step to closer to realising her dreams of representing Australia, when she tried out for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games at the 2018 Hancock Prospecting Australian Swimming Trials in February.

Currently ranked in the top three for her age group nationally in the 200m Butterfly, Jessica trialled in the Women’s 200m Butterfly, coming third in her heat. Although she didn’t qualify, Jessica recorded a personal best (PB) of 2:17.60, climbing from 27th to 19th in the national rankings.

“My primary goal in the next 12 months is to get my first ever national medal in the pool at the 2018 Georgina Hope Foundation Australian Age Swimming Championships,” said Jessica.

“In Open Water, I am training towards winning the 10km Age level, and I’m also aiming to break into the top ten at the Open level for a number of events including 200m Butterfly, 800m Freestyle and 10km Open Water.”

The open waters of Brighton Beach, South Australia is where Jessica achieved her career highlight to date; winning her first national medal at the 2018 Australian Open Water Championships in January. Swimming in the Girls 17 Years 7.5km event, Jessica won Bronze, missing out on Silver by a mere .01 seconds.

“Jessica has a lot of talent, but she also has the right personality,” said her mum, Leanne. “The competitive ‘gotta reach that goal’ is in Jessica’s nature, she’s always had stamina and endurance, and she doesn’t mind the repetitive training.”

Accepted into Nudgee College Swimming Club’s highest squad – Sharks – mid last year, Jessica is receiving high performance training under the guidance of Swimming Director and Sharks Coach, David Proud, who swam for Great Britain at the World Championships in Barcelona (2003) and Montreal (2005).

“Joining Nudgee has helped dramatically,” said Jessica. “I saw changes in my mindset and training intensity pretty quickly.”

Adds David, “Since joining my training group last June, Jess has improved her standards both in the competition and training pool immensely. She has knocked five seconds off her 200m Butterfly and 20 seconds off her 800m Freestyle in nine months through a lot of hard work and attention to detail in the training pool.”

Photo by Sports in Focus

Rising at 4am six mornings a week to train, Jessica also trains three afternoons per week, including thrice weekly gym sessions and a weekly Pilates class. It is no small wonder that when asked to name her biggest challenge, Jessica cites the hours put in and physical pain. “Backing up from training to training is hard,” she explained. “I usually sleep to and from training because I’m so tired.”

In addition to the individual, sport specific strength and conditioning program provided by Nudgee, Jessica is being kept in peak form with the help of her first sponsor, Moreton All Body Care, who accepted Jessica into their inaugural Sponsored Athlete Program in March.

“Jessica’s determination, passion and commitment to her sport and training, to reach the levels she have already achieved, really impressed us,” said Physiotherapist, Georgie Vinton. “Our Physiotherapy staff will be working with Jessica to ensure she remains injury free, and in top physical condition, for her upcoming competitions. She is a great role model for other young athletes in the area, and we hope to see her succeeding on the world stage in the not too distant future.”

The world stage is where Jessica has set her sights, with representing Australian at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and winning a world title her ultimate goal.

“For the 200m Butterfly in particular, I am targeting the current Australian and Commonwealth records of 2:03.41 held by Jessicah Schipper,” Jessica said.


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