Catherine Matthews

Catherine Matthews, elite athlete

Nicknames: Coco/ Pineapple – A crazy dream involving a Samoan nightclub/ A hairstyle.

Place of birth: Hobart, Tasmania

Please list your sporting career highlights:

  • Represented Australia with the Barramundis (Mixed Team), Canada 2008 (4th)
  • Represented Australia with the Firetails (Women's Team), Japan 2012 (5th)
  • Voted MVP at Australian National Championships, Perth 2009
  • Co-captained Melbourne club team to National Championship, 2012

At what age did you start seriously training and competing in your sport(s)?

Age 24

What (and/or who) got you started in the sport?

I started at a University Club (Melbourne University) as I was looking for a mixed sport that provided a social aspect as well as competition. Having played many different sports over the years, Ultimate quickly took over as the best I've ever played and soon consumed my life.

Are other family members involved in sport?

Not competitively, but I run a few times a week with my three brothers – we use it as our chance to catch up.

Who has been the biggest influence in your sporting career?

My coach Anna Rogacki.  Her emphasis on mental strength training showed me that the difference between the teams at the top is not physical, but mental.

Who has been the biggest influence in your academic life?

Probably my grandparents.  I have always been really proud of the fact that my grandma was the first woman in Tasmania to receive a PhD.

Do you support any other sport and/or teams?

I'm more into playing than watching…but I do love the tennis. Speaking of mental strength, Federer is amazing. I always love to watch other height challenged athletes succeeding!  Early on this was Hingis and Coetzer.

How do you relax? Do you have other life interests outside of your sport?

The 15 minutes to read the paper and drink my coffee in the morning is my favourite part of the day.  It's not exactly relaxing, but I've started rock climbing lately and I love the technical challenge.

What is one thing that might surprise readers to learn about you?

I am an architect, but retraining to be a prosthetist. I'm aiming to be (Australia's first?) architect prosthetist…creating architecture for the body.

What is your favourite food?  Movie? Music/performer?

My favourite drink is coffee and my favourite food is frozen peas.

What was the best advice you were ever given?

See below…

Do you have a saying or motto that you live your life by?

Everything you need you already have (stolen from an excellent coach!)