A @UniCentreLeeds student has recently scooped a silver medal for the British Senior Indoor Championships in race walking.

Headingley resident Tom Partington has competed in the discipline for over 10 years and is hoping to compete in the 2024 Olympics. His interest in the long-distance sport was sparked by his parents, both successful race walking athletes who’ve achieved numerous accolades.

Training 12 times a week at the National Endurance Centre in Leeds, he has a strict fitness regime and diet plan designed to help him achieve high performance. After recently competing in the British Senior Indoor Championships, he came second place reaching 5000m in 21 minutes and 9 seconds.

Speaking of the achievement, Tom said: “The sense of pride I felt winning my first ever silver medal was phenomenal. To be able to continue my parents’ legacy is such a privilege and makes me more motivated to aim higher in my next race.”

Alongside participating in sporting activities, Tom has also studied sport for a number of years. After studying the Level 3 Diploma in Sport at Leeds City College, he decided to continue to higher education at University Centre Leeds. Currently studying the Foundation Degree in Sports Performance, his course offers insightful theory with practical applications and the opportunity to study topics such as periodization and coaching processes.

Tom said: “Studying at the university has given me invaluable skills to be the best athlete I can be. It’s fantastic to focus on topics that I’m passionate about and I love learning the theoretical perspectives and putting these into practice.

“The university has been incredibly supportive with my race walking. My tutors offer generous flexibility, such as deadline extensions when upcoming assignments clash with races. This allows me to focus my time accordingly and achieve my full potential.”

Lee Chapman, Higher Education Course Leader at University Centre Leeds, added: “It’s a real pleasure to have such a talented athlete studying with us. His commitment to his training and studies is admirable and we’re excited to see what he will achieve in the future. Our staff are dedicated to providing a valuable and engaging experience for all students. We really enjoy giving budding athletes a head-start in their career!”

University Centre Leeds provides a range of Higher Education qualifications validated by Leeds City College and The Open University.

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