Sport scholarship eases the load for weightlifter

Monday 6 November 2017

Junior weightlifting champion Jo Dobson has received a boost to her ambition of representing her country at the Olympics one day.

Jo, a Year 13 student at The Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL), has won a coveted place on the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS). The scheme is a Sport England initiative which supports athletes aged 16 plus and still in education with successfully managing their academic and sporting commitments without compromising either.

Acceptance onto TASS is a significant achievement, as athletes must be nominated by their sport’s national governing body before they can apply. Jo, who trains 5-6 times a week with Leeds City Weightlifting, was put forward for the scheme by British Weight Lifting (BWL).

Already a national weightlifting champion, Jo won her most recent title at the BWL British Junior Championships last month. She became U20 champion in the women’s 63kg class despite being the youngest in the category at only 17 years of age.

As well as defending her title next year, Jo has her sights set on future international competition including the Commonwealth Games and Olympics.

TASS will help her work towards her goals by providing access to services including physiotherapy, psychology, nutrition and lifestyle support. There will also be regular supervision and a £500 grant to help with expenses such as travel, equipment and competition entries.

After sitting her A-levels at GSAL, Jo aims to study physiotherapy at a university with suitable facilities for her to continue her training. She said: “TASS will be a huge help with balancing full-time study with my goal of elite sport and enabling me to get the best from both. I have to be very good at time management; it’s all part of being a sportsperson.”

TASS is funded by Sport England, and is a partnership between talented athletes, educational institutions and national sports governing bodies.

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