Study, service the tonic for Hulley's Olympics mission

Study and service have been the tonic Alex Hulley needed to regain control over her disrupted mission to throw at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

A Commonwealth Games silver medallist in the hammer throw, Hulley was at the beginning of the year in search of an automatic qualifying standard that would propel her to the Games.

When the Olympics were postponed for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Australian Catholic University Elite Athlete and Performer Program scholarship student dived back into her Bachelor of Occupational Therapy course “to cram in as much as I could”.

“This year I’ve learned that I’m usually very set in my ways. I like routine,” said Hulley, from Rouse Hill in north western Sydney.

“When COVID-19 came, that all went out the window. Having no control threw me but I learned at least I could control uni.

“It’s given me some focus, finding something I like to do.”

The 23-year-old’s course work led her to a professional experience placement at the Hills Private Hospital in Baulkham Hills, Greater Western Sydney, where she is building towards a career in neuro (nervous system) rehabilitation.

“I’ve always been exposed to people with disabilities and just felt there was something I could do to help,” she said. “Having that exposure from a young age made me want to help people with a disability to achieve.”

Hulley is a New South Wales Institute of Sport member now ranked third on Australia’s all-time rankings for hammer throw.

Her 70.55m personal best could be as near as 1.5m to an automatic qualifier for Tokyo. Another three or four metres could launch her into an Olympic final.

“I’m looking at technique and I’ve seen some really big improvements in consistency, and definitely strength is something I can improve,” she said.

“That comes with age. A lot of the women I compete with have 5-8 more years in the gym than me.”

From Olympic athletes to rising stars, the EAPP is proud to support over 80 student athletes and performers through the provision of financial scholarships. Ranging from $1000-$5000, this support has gone a long way to supporting a diverse range of athletes and performers during a difficult period. Applications for 2021 EAPP scholarships open on 7 September 2020.

Media contact: damien.stannard@acu.edu.au, phone 0484387349


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