The life of sports star Anna Flanagan
Born and bred Canberran, Hockeyroo, charity ambassador, journalist – Anna Flanagan is one busy athlete.
Anna credits growing up in the capital with putting her on the path to success, after starting her hockey training at age 5 with her whole family and being trained by her father.
“I had the best time growing up in Canberra,” Anna said.
“Being such a close knit community, I was able to do a lot of junior sports, as it is easy to get around, and catch up with all my school friends on weekends. I often went exploring at the Cotter or did walks around Mount Majura.”
Anna was the first Australian hockey player to sign a sponsorship deal with Red Bull, and the win was something she worked extremely hard for.
“I created a personal brand and built relationships with companies that could help me achieve my dreams,” she said.
“Red Bull played a significant part in this and I am really appreciative of all the opportunities they provided me.”
The hockey star is a huge fan of all sports and is looking forward to the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.
“I endeavour to watch as many different sports as possible to not only cheer on the Aussies but also to see how other athletes compete,” she said.
As well as her work with charities such as the National Breast Cancer Association, Cerebral Palsy ACT and Shenton Park Dog Shelter, Anna has taken a step into sports media. She said the transition from professional athlete to sports reporter with Fox Sports has been “surprisingly seamless”.
“I am sports-minded so I was in my element. However learning new technologies and working late hours took a little getting used to. But it has taught me a lot about all the different sports and what the public like to watch,” she said.
For young athletes keen to get into the sport of hockey, Anna has plenty of tips.
“Head to the Hockey ACT website to find your local club,” Anna said.
“From there, there are state trials for all ages - U13s to Vets. State is a stepping stone to be recognised nationally.”
And as for the future of Anna Flanagan?
“To continue playing national level Hockey, hopefully represent Australia in the coming years again,” she said.
“I want to continue my rise in sports media as well as my work with local charities.”
Anna Flanagan is the ambassador for the Australian Running Festival, held in Canberra on April 14 to 15.