A role model is someone that others can look up to, get inspired by and emulate based on their success, behaviour and example. But what makes a good role model? Many would consider a reality TV star a role model, but they’re surely no match to our powerful, passionate Olympic athletes that can be looked up to not only on their sporting achievements but also personally. We spoke to Manchester based fashion and lifestyle blogger Laurie Elle about her favourite sporting role models.
It's hard to miss Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis-Hill, she’s always in the limelight for all the right reasons. She sets a good example to young people and raises goals and aspirations for other athletes –especially after her focus and courage recently helped her win the World Championships heptathlon gold. Not only this, Jessica Ennis-Hill is humble, down-to-earth and bright, making her the perfect inspiration for British women today. And not just in sport. Her true passion and dedication can inspire others to follow in her footsteps in different careers. Not only is Jessica inspiring other women with her athletic, strong body, but she’s also inspiring athletes in the making.
Following Jessica, another talented and influential woman is Shanaze Reade. If you haven't heard of her then where have you been?! She is a professional British track cyclist, Bicycle Motocross racer (who is currently training to compete in the Olympics Rio 2016) and the perfect example of a modern role model. Sexism still plays a big part in sport and it takes a lot of courage for powerful women like Shanaze Reade to set an example. She has challenged the sexist stereotype and proves that women are just as capable as men at pursuing any sport or career they wish. In 2005, aged only 17, she competed against all men at the National BMX and she recently started track racing at a local velodrome in Manchester to keep her fit and healthy. Her determination and drive inspire many.
The list of prestigious sporting women could go on but so could the list of male sport role models. Including Louis Smith, who is a British gymnast with an ever-growing medal collection – plus a glitzy trophy from Strictly Come Dancing! Not only does he have extremely good balance, immense flexibility and unbelievable strength, but he also volunteers and gives back to the community. The 26-year-old hopes to inspire youngsters through his gymnastics camp, which will help to motivate people to get involved in sport, even if it's just for fun.
One person with a long list of achievements is Mo Farah. The runner is all over the media with his long list of gold medals and he breaks British records with ease. He is a positive role model, great team player and has an excellent attitude. Even when he's not winning he has a large amount of respect towards other competitors which everyone could learn from.
There are many other stars who inspire us to be both better athletes and better people. Who is your sporting role model?