The European Week of Sport continues and the LET is promoting the benefits of being active and leading a healthy lifestyle. Today, we focus on Valdis Thora Jonsdottir from Iceland, who is playing in the WPGA International Challenge at Stoke by Nayland Hotel Golf and Spa, the penultimate tournament of the 2017 season on the LET Access Series.
Who got you into sport and what sports did you try when you were younger?
My parents first signed me up for swimming when I was younger and then my best friend from school taught me how to kick a soccer ball in first grade and I sneaked off to soccer practice with her to try it out and eventually convinced my mom to sign me up for that as well. My family has always played golf so of course I was signed up for summer golf camps when I was younger and I liked it. I continued to swim for about three years, soccer for 12 years and played golf since I was eight years old and I also did karate for about two or three years.
Why does sport makes you happy?
Just the feeling you get afterwards when the endorphins really kick in is amazing. Overcoming certain obstacles that you encounter and have practiced for a long time is also a great feeling. And just the fact that you get to know your body so well, how it works, moves and functions. It’s amazing what the human body can endure and achieve.
Besides golf, what sports do you do actively and why?
I don’t do any sport actively besides golf but I go to the gym of course to build up more strength, more explosive power and endurance. The sports that I enjoy, but don’t have a lot of opportunities to play, are soccer and tennis and then I like to go on a hike.
What does the #beactive campaign means to you and why do you support the campaign?
Being active is very important for human beings. Your body will reward you for your hard work and your physical and mental health improves. I tend to get quite heavy on the mental side when I’m not active enough so I try to make sure I get some activities in regularly.
How do you use your position to help and inspire other people to have an active lifestyle?
I post motivational workouts on my Instagram because I know seeing other workout posts helps to motivate me to be more active.
Has your active lifestyle helped you to overcome a problem?
I know, from my own experience, that sport can help you to release frustration and negative energy and get you bank in balance. In 2008, I was playing a match play championship in Iceland but also waiting for the national coach to announce who was going to go to Australia for the World Cup and represent Iceland. The night before the last day he emailed us and I saw that I was the first alternate. I was highly disappointed as I had been playing very well that year and it had been my dream to go to Australia for a long time. Obviously, quite furious with the email, I put on my workout clothes and just sprinted out of the house and I ran as fast as I could for as long as I could and it really released some frustration and energy. The next morning, I played a match against one of the girls on the team and I beat her 3-and-2.