Job search
Job Search

People profile: Laura Kenny

Olympic cycling champion

Published in Sports Management 2018 issue 4
Read on turning pages | Download PDF of this issue
Kenny is Great Britain’s most successful female Olympic competitor of all time / © John Walton/PA Wire/PA Images
Kenny is Great Britain’s most successful female Olympic competitor of all time/ © John Walton/PA Wire/PA Images

How did you first get into cycling?
I’d always been sporty. I’d always been into all the team sports and I really enjoyed it. But it was actually my parents that got me into cycling. My mum chose cycling as a way of losing weight when I was eight years old, and that was it, really. My sister and I really enjoyed it, so we just carried on doing it.

From there, what was the journey to the top of the sport like?
I just did it because I enjoyed it – it was fun. And then, I guess it’s a bit like football, in that you get scouted. I did a test when I was about 13 to get onto a programme called Talent Team, which was my first stepping stone to the Great Britain team.

They have different academies for different ages and then once you’re 18 you can get onto the GB programme. I basically just went through the system, literally from the bottom to the top, through British Cycling.

Obviously, cycling isn’t easy, but in terms of moving through the system, I didn’t really have any hiccups. I had it quite smooth onto the senior programme, and then my Olympic day came around so much faster than I thought it was going to.

How important is sport to you, personally, on a day-to-day level?
It’s always been important. I always loved having an active life. That’s what I want for my son, Albie, when he’s growing up. I think it’s a really healthy way of living. It’s not even the fact that I do it because I love it – because I obviously do love cycling – but I also do it because it makes me feel good about myself.

How have you found getting back into training after having a baby?
I always thought, as a female athlete, that I wanted a baby and why should I let it end my career? So I always planned that I would have one during my career.

I’m not going to lie, it’s certainly tough. In the beginning, it was hard because you’re thrown in the deep end. I had no idea how my body would react. And my body is completely different to what it was before, but I’m adapting to it, and I’m feeling more and more like myself every day.

It may be that I end up getting back to what I was before, but if I don’t, then that’s just life isn’t it? I can cope with that.

Do you think big sporting events can inspire people to become more active?
Yeah, definitely. I think these events provide a huge boost. Because seeing it gives people encouragement and they think, “Oh, I can do that”. The more we can get sport on telly, especially women’s sport, the better. Because I do think female sporting role models can be incredibly powerful.

You recently spoke at Active Uprising. What are your recommendations for getting more people active?
Personally, as a cyclist, I would say we need more clubs, because getting people into the clubs is a massive thing. That’s how I started, I just joined a club with my family. You get all the advice and coaching and join a community. And I think that’s really important, to get that encouragement.

But I think school also has an important part to play. I think it’s too easy to say, ‘Oh well, there’s only an hour in the curriculum that they have to do a week’. I think children need more than that. Not even sport, but activity – outdoor activity. I do feel that it’s really important to have an outdoor lifestyle.

What do you think sports clubs can do to attract total beginners?
Beginners’ programmes are obviously great. I remember at some of the clubs I went to you had to be a certain standard, it wasn’t open to everyone. So I think if more clubs could have different groups to suit different abilities, that would be perfect. Then beginners can move through and learn from everybody.

I think that’s important, because you don’t want to be thrown in the deep end, people want to feel like they’re part of something. They want to feel like they have a place there.

Sign up for FREE ezines & magazines
Sports jobs
Everyone Active
featured job

Swimming Teachers

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive hourly rate
Job location: Nationwide

Party Leaders

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Lutterworth, UK

Swimming Teacher

Clayesmore School
Salary: Competitive + attractive benefits
Location: Blandford Forum, UK

Lifeguard

Clayesmore School
Salary: Competitive + attractive benefits
Location: Blandford Forum, UK

Duty Manager

Lex Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Bexleyheath, UK

Assistant General Manager

The Gym Group
Salary: Competitive salary plus benefits
Location: South Yorkshire, England, UK

Health and Sport Strategy Manager

Stevenage Borough Council
Salary: Grade 7 (£33,799 – £36,876)
Location: Stevenage, UK

General Manager

Comberton Village College
Salary: Grade SO2 - £29,636
Location: Comberton, Cambridge, UK

Recreation Assistant / Lifeguard

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Kidlington, UK

Trainee Duty Manager

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Kidlington, UK
recruiting with sports management

Sports Centre Assistant Apprentice

Legacy Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Exeter, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Competitive
Location: Abingdon, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum
Location: Bath, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £8.21 per hour
Location: Rugby, UK

Activity Centre Manager

Girlguiding Gloucestershire
Salary: £18,500 pa plus accommodation
Location: Cowley, Cheltenham, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum
Location: Chelsea, London, UK

Senior Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £23,894 per annum
Location: Streatham, London, UK
recruiting with sports management

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum
Location: Eltham, London, UK

Swimming Teachers

Wiltshire Council
Salary: £13.84 - £15.00 per hour (inclusive of 10% market supplement)
Location: Wiltshire, UK

Coaching Assistant (Level 1)

Wiltshire Council
Salary: £10.54 - £11.19 per hour
Location: Tidworth, UK

Park Manager - Jump Giants Trampoline Park

Jump Giants
Salary: Competitive
Location: Burton on the Wolds, Loughborough, UK

Sales, Marketing and Lead Manager

Lex Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Barnstaple, UK

Leisure Attendants

Gedling Borough Council
Salary: £19,171 - £19,945 per annum
Location: Nottingham, UK

Aquatic Lead

Everybody Sport and Recreation
Salary: £23,632 per year
Location: Macclesfield, UK
training with sports management

Aquatics Project Manager

GLL
Salary: Up to £35,952 per annum
Location: East London, UK

Assistant General Manager

The Gym Group
Salary: Competitive Salary and Benefits
Location: Basingstoke, UK

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Nuneaton, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Alton, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Stratford Upon Avon, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: West Lindsey, United Kingdom

Gymnastics Coach

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Watford, United Kingdom
lifeguard jobs  personal trainer jobs  swimming teacher jobs  recreation assistant jobs  Gymnastics Coach jobs  apprenticeships jobs  duty manager jobs  Swimming instructor jobs  general manager jobs  Regional Sales Manager jobs  Swim Teacher jobs  assistant manager jobs  assistant general manager jobs  fitness instructor jobs  Customer Services Advisor jobs 
More jobs

Catalogue Gallery

JP Lennard: Leading supplier to Commercial Swimming Pools, Leisure Centres, Health & Fitness Clubs, Hotels, Holiday Parks, Schools and Universities, supplying thousands of products directly into these sectors.
JPL
BSW: BSW is a manufacturer of sports floorings, sports mats, gym flooring, elastomer products for impact sound insulation and vibration isolation, anti-slip mats for securing loads as well as protective and separating layers.
BSW
More catalogues

Video Gallery

TVS Sports Surfaces
Established in 2009 as a specialist supplier of noise and vibration solutions, The TVS Group has successfully evolved into four key strategic divisions; TVS Sports Surfaces, TVS Gym Flooring, TVS Play Surfaces and TVS Acoustics.
Visit website
More videos

Company profile

Company profile: EZ-Runner Systems Ltd
With over 600 clients worldwide in Spa, Golf, Health Club, Hotel and Kids Play Leisure, we have a proven track record endorsed by a diverse range of industry leaders.
View full profile >
More company profiles

Featured Supplier

Crown overhaul changing rooms at Saunton Sands spa
Saunton Sands Hotel in Devon, UK, has completed a £2m expansion of its spa and wellness facilities.
View full details >
More featured suppliers

Property & Tenders

Location:
Company: Will to Win
Location:
Company: Savills
More properties & tenders

Diary dates

26-27 Jun 2019
Villa Park, Birmingham, United Kingdom
06-07 Jul 2019
Monte-Carlo, Monaco
23-25 Jul 2019
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Melbourne, Australia
05-06 Sep 2019
TagusPark, Oeiras, Portugal
More diary dates