Congratulations to Year 11 student Sancia Carlile who recently competed in the Oceana Judo Championships in Canberra.

Sancia comes from a ‘Judo family’ and can say without exaggeration that she has been involved in the sport her whole life.

“I was eight weeks old when I went to my first Judo Comp,” she says. “When I turned four I was finally allowed to get on the mat and start training.

“I do three sessions every week – twice in Bendigo at our local club, Judo Bendigo, and each Saturday I got to Melbourne to train with the Victorian team. I also do three or four gym sessions a week at Doherty’s, who very kindly sponsors me.”

Sancia says it was an honour to compete at the Oceania championships and takes great pride in representing Australia.

“It was extra special this year with the event being on home soil. It meant my family could be there to see me compete.”

Sancia loves the constant challenge that Judo provides; knowing there is always “someone better you will have to fight”.

“In Judo, you always need to be improving, learning new techniques, being fitter and stronger,” she says. “It’s so much harder than any other sport I have played. There’s no down time, no off-season.”

Sancia’s aim is to keep working hard to build her ranking, and one day compete at the highest level. But school is still high on her list of priorities.

“I’m very passionate about health and fitness and would love to work in the health industry – maybe as a doctor or paramedic.”