13 May 2017
A coaching career after athletics: LOUISE SAUVAGE
We continue our series chatting to elite athletes about a coaching career after athletics. Post retirement many athletes want to stay close to sport and there are various options, including officiating or working in administration, but the most popular is coaching and with a growing number of opportunities to earn income from coaching there is increased numbers taking this path.
In this article, we speak to Louise Sauvage, one of the greatest Paralympians in history.
Athletics NSW: During your athletics career did you think about your career after athletics? Did you think you would go into coaching after you retired?
Louise Sauvage: Yes I did. I knew I had to retire after Athens due to injury and long term effects on my body. I wanted to stay in the sport that gave me sooooo much and give back so I wanted to coach.
Athletics NSW: When during your athletics career did you decide to transition into coaching? Why? Did it soften the blow of retirement as an athlete?
Louise Sauvage: In 2003 I completed a post grad in sport coaching with the Uni of QLD . I was offered this so I suppose in the two years up to my retirement I was thinking of my future. It was still a big change to my whole life but less of a blow because I tried to prepare myself as best I could. The real realisation of not being an athlete came after going to my first Paralympics (2008) as a coach. This was extremely hard and I took a big chuck of 2009 to deal with this.
Athletics NSW: Advice to other athletes about a post athletics career, including coaching.
Louise Sauvage: Start to think about what you might like to do. Tag along to coaches already that coach in your sport and others in other sports and talk to them, attending sessions see if this is what you might like to do. That goes for any profession really. You are a long time retired from your sport but it is another opportunity in life so try and prepare yourself. Try it out there is no harm in having a go and seeing what might be good for you. I think with any job you must have passion and believe in what your doing. For me I want to make a difference.
Image: Louise Sauvage providing encourage to a your athlete