An interview with British athlete and GB Active trainer Serita Solomon

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Serita Solomon is a British track and field athlete competing in the hurdles and a GB Active trainer. She won a bronze medal in 2015 at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in the 60 metres hurdles. Serita tried out a sports massage via Urban Massage to help her muscles recover. We spoke to her after her treatment to find out a little bit more about how she prepares for competitions and how she encourages her class during training.

Tell us a little bit about yourself

Serita Solomon

My name is Serita Solomon I am a GB and England sprint hurdler. I have competed at the Commonwealth games, European championships, and World indoor championships. I have a bronze medal from European indoor championships.

What got you into athletics and hurdling?

I was encouraged by my mother to take part in a hurdles race when I was young to cover the regular hurdler who was injured and discovered I was pretty good and I enjoyed it. My older brother was the person who inspired me to get into athletics, I just wanted to emulate his achievements

What are the areas of your body that you have to be extra careful to maintain during training?

Everything below the waist needs to been kept in functioning well, so I can get the best out of my sessions. One small injury can really throw your whole session out.

How long do you spend warming up/warming down during a training session and why is this important?

I spend at least an hour warming up and around 20mins cooling down. Warming up well can help prevent injuries and a productive cool down helps to reduce muscle stiffness after exercise.

How do you prepare yourself mentally and emotionally for a competition?

I use a lot of visualisation techniques before a competition. But I usually feel pretty mentally prepared when I know that I have done everything I need to do physically in training before hand.

How do you spend your downtime away from the track?

I enjoy reading and watching movies. When training is at it’s heaviest I try to use my spare time to fully recover, which involves a lot of laying about. I also enjoy coaching, going shopping and just exploring new places when I can.

As a GB Active trainer, how do you motivate your class?

I try to make training feel like a team effort and join in with some of the exercises. Generally making the class fun keeps your attention off of any difficulties they might be facing.

How do you encourage your GB Active participants to maintain a healthy lifestyle outside of the class?

General conversation about how much more energy you will have when you balance a good diet with regular exercise. Sometimes small bits of advice can help you stay on track from day to day.

What the best advice you have received from your own trainers/mentors?

Enjoy what you do and commit to what you set out to achieve.

What role do you feel massage has in your training?

Massage is vitally important in helping my muscles to recover and be ready for the next work out.

Finally, how was your sports massage you booked via Urban Massage?

I would recommend a massage with Cristian. He was polite and friendly. Used good techniques and made sure I was happy with what was happening. I felt refreshed and lose after my treatment and felt he really dealt with my problem areas well.

About GB Active

GB Active

GB Active is a bootcamp in Green Park designed to bring GB athletes to the community in a fun fitness environment. They bring GB calibre fitness sessions for all levels and abilities from top level athletes from a variety of sporting disciplines. GB active create a fun and motivational environment using exercises and techniques that the athletes use themselves.

“GB Active is not just about getting our clients fit, toned and in shape, but also about giving support on nutrition, sustainable exercise and progression towards their fitness goals. We’re more than just a bootcamp. We’re a community and a lifestyle.” Patrick, Managing Director

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