Sport Scholarship athlete Tom Barron who plays hurling for club and county talks sport and how he balances sport and studying at WIT
Every academic year, WIT provides up to 60 Sports Scholarship Awards distributed between three awarding categories which reflect the sporting level a student is competing at within their sporting discipline: Elite, Sport Scholarship & Emerging Talent. Apply at http://www.wit.ie/vikingsportscholarship
Name: Tom Barron
Course: Agricultural science
Highest achievements to date?
Representing Waterford at minor and U20 level in the past and currently a part of the Waterford senior hurling panel for 2020.
What is your favourite memory from your sporting career so far?
Winning a Minor hurling county title with my club in 2014, this was my first and only success with my club to date and I have fond memories of it.
What is your personal aim this year?
My personal aim this year is to perform at my best for my club, college and county and to help the teams I am involved in to win some silverware.
Who was your sporting idol growing up?
My sporting idol growing up was Shane Walsh. Shane played hurling for Waterford for a number of years when I was younger and is also from the same club.
How do you prepare for each event?
In the lead up to games and training I make sure to have a good diet and fuel my body with the correct food. Drinking 3-4 litres of water a day is also essential for me to perform at my highest. I prepare myself mentally also by visualising things that I can do during the match to help the team. I also think about things that can go wrong and what I can do to resolve them.
What advice would you give to athletes wanting to improve?
Mentors are always a great in order to help you improve. Mentors offer you advice and point out to you what needs improvement in your game. I find working with a mentor is very beneficial as they can see things you can’t and vice versa. It is very important to put everything into your practice and train hard in order to improve.
What do you do to relax/unwind?
To relax and unwind I like to watch telly or documentaries. I also like to spend a bit of time outdoors on the farm at home.
How do you balance work/college/training?
I don’t have huge difficultly balancing my college work and training. Each is very important to me and I spend equal effort on both. Monday to Friday, 9-5 is generally time spend in college or doing assignment and the evening time is for training and matches. I ensure to keep on top of college work possible to ensure it doesn’t interfere with my training and vice versa.
What was the best advise you were ever given?
‘Just enjoy it and love what you do.’ If I didn’t enjoy I wouldn’t be doing it.
Do you get nervous before big races/competitions and if so how do you deal with it?
When I was younger I used to get nervous but not so much anymore. The feeling I get now is more a feeling of excitement and adrenaline. I look forward to big occasions and matches and see it as an opportunity to demonstrate all the skills that I have been practicing in training. To deal with nerves I used to surround myself with people that I felt comfortable with a few hours prior to the event. I also find music very helpful in situations like this.
About the Sports Scholarship Programme at WIT
Offers an athlete-led development programme aimed at supporting the overall development of high performance athletes in a wide range of sports. The programme gives talented athletes the opportunity to develop their sporting and academic career by offering a network of support services and expertise which is tailored around the specific needs of each individual athlete.