Inspired effort: Why Games medallist loves helping kids
IT'S a measure of Jordyn Holzberger's upbringing that she asked to share her Commonwealth Games success with Ipswich's next generation.
Just days after being part of Australia's silver medal-winning team, she devoted three hours inspiring kids at the Ipswich Hockey Complex.
She joined the Saturday morning Hookin2Hockey session at Raceview, chatting to the young players and displaying her medal.
"That was really good and a lot of fun to have all those kids, which is great for our sport,'' she said.
"I just thought it would be nice to go out.''
After the demands of helping the Hockeyroos make the recent Commonwealth Games final, Holzberger could easily have returned quietly to her national team base in Perth.
But the former Hancock Brothers player and Ipswich Girls' Grammar School student thoroughly enjoyed encouraging the youngsters from a number of Ipswich clubs.
"Some kids asked me if they want to get to where I'm at, what do they need to focus on, what they need to improve on,'' she said.
"Some kids asked if they could take my medal home.''
Although she may largely stay out of the spotlight, Holzberger is one of Ipswich's most dedicated sportswomen.
She appreciates her time in the city, especially with her former club and school mates.
"One of the best things about team sport is being able to play with your friends,'' she said. "And I guess that's IGGS especially. I wouldn't give that up for anything.''
Apart from spending some rare time off chatting to the kids, she caught up with her supportive friends.
Holzberger, 24, also stayed a few days longer in Ipswich for a friend's wedding.
After the intensity of her first Commonwealth Games, she enjoyed being back in a "normal environment''.
However, she's still training at the QAS before rejoining her Australian teammates in Western Australia. That includes morning weights and conditioning sessions before stick work in the afternoons.
Preparing for her next round of international competition, Holzberger reflected on her memorable debut Commonwealth Games experience.
"It was my first multi-sport event,'' she said. "That was kind of new and exciting.
"It was in front of the home crowd. The stands were always full.''
Although she has played in many countries since making her first national team in 2012, Holzberger's Games opportunity allowed her to share in a massive Aussie team environment. That included the "really cool'' Games Village where the Australian team stayed in two buildings.
"It was probably one of the highlights of the Games,'' she said. "Just being there with other sports and countries.''
With hockey commitments up until the second last day, Holzberger didn't get a chance to see many other sports live, except for the Rugby Sevens finals.
However, being a fan of the Crossfit Games, she was screaming in her room for Aussie weightlifter Tia-Clair Toomey during her emotion-charged gold medal-winning performance.
"The Hockeyroos, we love her,'' Holzberger said.