This week we’re profiling Jen Heath, second year PhD student at the Centre for Appearance Research in Bristol and snow sport bursar. She’s an experienced boarder who loves the trill of the mountain.
How long have you been snowboarding and how did you get into it in the first place?
I have been snowboarding for 9 years. Prior to this I was a ski instructor in Canada and was offered a sponsored visa if I also learnt to teach snowboarding. I took advantage of the opportunity to access free snowboarding lessons/coaching and gained my instructing license a few months later.
What’s the biggest event you’ve competed in?
The Snowboard Cross race at The Brits (British Championships) 2015 against European and World Cup snowboarders.
What’s your aspirations for this year?
I want to win all of the snowboard racing/boardercross events at this year’s BUCS Main Event!
Who’s your sporting idol and why?
Jacqueline Hernandez because she, like me, is ‘larger’ than other female athletes but is still out there competing with them. I also train with 3-time Olympic athlete Zoe Gillings-Brier.
What brought you to UWE Bristol?
I moved to Bristol to do my PhD at the Centre for Appearance Research, the world’s largest research group focusing on the role of appearance and body image in people’s lives.
What do you like to do when you’re not training or competing?
I skate, play roller derby, and ski with UWE Snowsports.
What do you love about snow sports?
I like the excitement of competing side-by-side with other snowboarders and also the speed of the sport. The locations of races also can’t help but provide stunning scenery!