Emma Wiggs shortlisted for The National Lottery Athlete of the Year Award

Emma Wiggs MBE, Paralympic Gold Medallist and six-time World Championship Paracanoeist, has been nominated for the National Lottery Athlete of the Year Award 2018 in recognition of her outstanding sporting success alongside her work outside of competition.

The annual National Lottery Awards look to find the UK’s favourite Lottery-funded projects, celebrating the inspirational people and projects who do extraordinary things with National Lottery funding. New this year is the Athlete of the Year category, which is a chance to celebrate the outstanding achievements of National Lottery funded athletes, whilst demonstrating the impact of National Lottery players on elite sport.

Emma has been shortlisted following a phenomenal 2017 season, in which she overcame a series of injuries to have her most successful year of racing. She became the undisputed world leader for KL2 paracanoe, holding the British, World, European and Paralympic titles – the first canoeist to do so. Emma also won the World title in the fastest ever recorded time for a female racer and since then, has become double European Champion following another major title win in June 2018.

Emma’s sporting achievements saw her being nominated in the Sunday Times Sportswomen of the Year awards; awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Chichester for her contribution to the sport and in recognition of her former career as a teacher; and an MBE for her Services to Canoeing.

Emma has also been shortlisted because of her work as a leading advocate of clean sports, for which she was nominated by the UK Anti-Doping Agency to attend the institute of National Anti-Doping Organisations internal athletes and leaders’ event as a panel member, the only British athlete to do so.

How to vote

The Athlete public vote runs from 1 August 2018 to 14 September 2018 and winners will receive a £5,000 cash prize to give to a National Lottery funded project of their choice, feature on the BBC One broadcast and take home a trophy.

You can vote for Emma in three ways:

  1. Online by clicking here and entering a valid email address or social media log-in (only one vote per email address or social media account is permitted per category)
  2. Telephone – call 0844 836 9731 (Emma’s dedicated phone number). Calls cost 5p but please be advised that connection charges may be applied by some networks, so please check with your provider.
  3. Twitter – Emma has her own unique hashtag, #NLAEmma, for the duration of the campaign. Anyone who tweets this hashtag or retweets a post containing this hashtag will register a vote.

Only one vote per account is allowed. Furthermore votes may not count from accounts with one or more of the following attributes:

  • Less than 10 followers
  • A poor follower to following ratio
  • No profile picture
  • Posts from bot accounts/clients

Show your support for Emma and get voting now!

Shona McCallin teams up with St Helen’s Farm

EMERGE Sport Management athlete Shona McCallin MBE has teamed up with St Helen’s Farm, producers of fresh and nutritious British goats’ milk products, after finding cows’ milk and traditional dairy products caused her discomfort, impacting her tight training schedule and performance on the field.

Shona said, “In 2014 my nutritionist advised me to give up cows’ milk products as I was in constant discomfort. I tried soya milk and other plant-based products but I just didn’t like the taste, it was such a struggle. I was thrilled when I found St Helen’s Farm, I feel so much better after I have started substituting in goats’ milk as it just seems so much gentler on my stomach. I love the taste and feel so much better now I can finally have all of my favourite things again.

“I have a busy schedule and for me balanced and healthy nutrition are fundamental for my training and performance. Since I’ve found St Helen’s Farm, milk in coffee and yogurt with granola are back in my morning routine, I even sneak St Helen’s products on tour with me when I travel to train and compete! They help me to get the protein and energy I need first thing in the morning and before bed.

“I think it’s amazing that making such an easy change has had such a dramatic impact on my personal well-being and day-to-day life. I’m very food conscious and knowing that St Helen’s Farm milk comes from healthy, happy goats makes the great taste even better.”“I think it’s amazing that making such an easy change has had such a dramatic impact on my personal well-being and day-to-day life. I’m very food conscious and knowing that St Helen’s Farm milk comes from healthy, happy goats makes the great taste even better.”

​Shona began playing hockey at the age of six and has since found herself on a rapid ascent through the ranks of elite international players and achieved her 50th combined international appearance for Great Britain and England during the Rio Olympic Final, a historic night for the Great Britain Hockey team.

Cornelia Wernhart, marketing manager at St Helen’s Farm who is sponsoring Shona on her journey to Tokyo 2020 said “Shona is an inspiration and a role model to young people across the UK. She shouldn’t have to compromise on her food choices and it is great to see what an impact a simple switch is having on her well-being and performance.

“Shona has been using St Helen’s Farm goat’s milk as part of her daily routine for about 12 months now so it really seemed like a natural fit, we are delighted to be able to provide her with the energy sources that she needs for her rigorous training schedule. We are thrilled to be working together to showcase the benefits of switching to goats’ milk so that others can get back to the top of their own games”

St Helen’s Farm was founded in 1986 on a smallholding near Barmby on the Marsh in East Yorkshire. More and more people in the UK are becoming increasingly aware that cows’ milk may not suit the needs of their body and are seeking alternatives to traditional dairy products. Goats’ milk is nutritionally closest to cows’ milk, yet many people who perceive they have issues with cows’ milk can drink goats’ milk without any problems.

Cornelia continued, “Goats’ milk is highly nutritious, contains essential vitamins and minerals and is an ideal food for the whole family to enjoy. Mild and smooth tasting, it’s enjoyed by more people around the world than cows’ milk and is already a key healthy fridge essential for thousands of people in the UK.”

St Helen’s Farm produces milk, yogurt, cheese, butter and even ice cream so you never have to miss out on the little luxuries in life. Available nationwide at Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Co-Op and Morrisons. Find out more at www.sthelensfarm.co.uk.

Nekoda Davis becomes an ambassador for MuscleFood

EMERGE Sport Management athlete Nekoda Davis becomes the latest GB athlete to join Team MuscleFood to promote the importance of moving more and eating better.

British Judoka World Champion and Commonwealth Gold Medallist Nekoda will use her expertise to help MuscleFood create valuable content, videos and Q&A sessions to educate and help the brand’s customers.

MuscleFood is one of the fastest growing SME’s in Britain and are part of Britain’s private companies with the fastest-growing sales. They see it as their responsibility to reduce preventable lifestyle diseases and to help reduce obesity by making healthy living easy, inexpensive and accessible to all. MuscleFood is currently working with a host of GB athletes to promote the importance of a healthy balanced lifestyle through physical activity and a nutritious diet.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Darren Beale, CEO and Found of MuscleFood, added: “We are so excited to have Nekoda be part of Team MuscleFood. We want to help the English population get active, keep fit and lead a healthy life! We know that Nekoda’s background in Judo and nutrition will help spread the word!”

On signing the partnership with MuscleFood, Nekoda said: “I’m really pleased to be a part of Team MuscleFood as I believe in the importance of inspiring the population to lead a healthy lifestyle and I hope I can use my position to spread the message.”

“Balancing nutrition and exercise is not easy even when you’re an elite athlete and so I’m looking forward to experiencing the MuscleFood way and sharing my nutritional journey with everyone.”

Meet the new face of TechPitch™ in the UK

Hear from Shona McCallin on why she cannot wait to spread the word about TechPitch™ around the UK.

EMERGE Sport Management athlete Shona McCallin recently signed a three year deal with Dutch company TechPitch™ to become its official UK ambassador. Shona took the time to talk about why she is so excited about her new role.

I am delighted to become an official Ambassador for TechPitch™ in the UK and cannot wait to spread the word about one of the most innovative training tools to arrive in our game over recent times. Last year I was introduced to the TechPitch™ and started using it soon after. I will be taking it out to coaching sessions and masterclasses at schools and clubs across the UK.

A little about TechPitch™….

TechPitch™ is an innovative hockey training tool that allows players of any ability to practice a number of techniques within a marked area. It is based upon the ‘1.2.3hockey!’ training method which was developed in Holland by leading coach, Albert Monpellier. The lines are drawn in a distinctive pattern to enable you to focus on ball and stick work. It encourages you to focus on footwork that you may require in match situations and enables you to develop your ability to move in any direction at speed.

Why I use it…..

Since beginning to use TechPitch™, I have been able to build upon my strong foundation of skills that I already have thanks to the repetitive drills I am able to do in the defined space provided. Had this product been around when I was making my way in the sport, the in-game skills that I have learned and refined over the years would have become second-nature at a much earlier stage.

As an international athlete, I want training tools that I can take with me when I am representing England and GB Hockey, TechPitch™ is exactly that. The 2x2m roll will come with me wherever I go and it is my way of ensuring my fundamentals are continuously being fine tuned. I’d encourage any young player to get one as it gives you the ability to hone your skills at home, at training and even through periods of rehab. It will improve your control, agility and subsequently your on-field performances.

Perhaps most importantly, I will use TechPitch™ to inspire the next generation of hockey player when I am coaching in local schools or giving masterclasses. Due to its’ simplicity, I can use the TechPitch™ to make the sessions fun and engaging with the underlying message of perfecting techniques through practice.

I’m looking forward to spreading the word as I believe in what this product can do for your game. It’s so simple yet an effective technique training tool making practice possible anytime and anywhere. It’s an integral part of my training and you can make it an integral part of your training too by making use of my promotional code: SHONAMCCALLIN232018 when at the checkout.

For more information on TechPitch™ visit www.techpitch.nl or click here to see a video of the TechPitch™ in action.


Shona McCallin signs with TechPitch™

The three-year partnership will see the Olympic gold medallist become the face of TechPitch™ in the UK

EMERGE Sport Management athlete Shona McCallin has signed a three year deal with Dutch company TechPitch™ to become its official UK ambassador. Shona will support TechPitch™ in raising the brand awareness of the training product throughout the UK hockey market, which is on a high after the success for Team GB at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Originating from one of the world’s most successful hockey nations, TechPitch™ is an innovative hockey training tool that allows users of all abilities to practice a number of playing techniques. The product utilises the renowned 1.2.3hockey! training method, developed by experienced hockey coach Albert Monpellier.

The practice involves following printed guide lines on patches of turf that can be produced in various sizes. The lines are drawn in a distinctive pattern that allows players to focus not only on ball and stick dribbling actions, but also footwork that is common place in a competitive match, and freeing players to be able to move 360° in any direction as quickly as possible. Repetitive drills using TechPitch™ result in these movements becoming autonomous and easier to implement in a match environment.

Having simultaneously studied at Tilburg University and trained at the HC MOP under the leadership of coach Toon Siepman for three years, Shona has a passion for both the Dutch way of playing and the country itself. For TechPitch, this made Shona the perfect ambassador for the UK, as Albert Monpellier explained; “I know Shona personally from when she was in The Netherlands and played for MOP in the Dutch hockey league.

“You could already see that Shona was focused and engaged on a mission, a young lady with human attitude and a sporting heart! Our company is dynamic and inventive, daring to dive into the future and like Shona, we are on a mission too! We are really excited to show everyone in the UK that they can learn how to play hockey just like Shona.”

As part of the agreement, Shona, who is currently with the England squad in Auckland, New Zealand for the Hockey World League Finals, will use TechPitch™ for her own personal training. Commenting on the product, Shona said: “I am a massive fan of TechPitch and the simple way it teaches some of the most important fundamentals that are often overlooked.”

The smallest TechPitch™ roll of 2x2m is easily portable, meaning players can practice anywhere, anytime – something that Shona believes makes it ideal for youngsters learning the game; “I’m not only going to be using TechPitch™ in my own training, I will also be using it in my coaching and masterclass sessions I hold in local schools and clubs.

“You can set the small roll up at home on your driveway, garage or any flat surface, so I’d encourage any young player wanting to improve their control and agility to get one and put the hours in running the drills. Those that do will see dramatic improvements to their on-field performance.”

For more information on TechPitch™ visit www.techpitch.nl or click here to see a video of the TechPitch™ in action.

Emma Wiggs receives Honorary Doctorate from University of Chichester

EMERGE Sports Management athlete Emma Wiggs received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Chichester, at a graduation ceremony this past Sunday.

Emma is a University of Chichester graduate herself having graduated with a degree in sports and exercise science in 2003, before qualifying as a teacher by gaining the Postgraduate Certificate in Education the following year. She was given an Honorary Doctorate of Education in recognition of her teaching career at Lavant House School, Chichester, and The Regis School in Bognor as well as her incredibly successful paracanoe achievements since she became a full-time athlete in 2012.

The accolade means a lot to Emma who has always held teaching close to her heart: “I am really proud to have been chosen for an Honorary Doctorate. The University of Chichester is a place that will always mean a lot to me as it encouraged me to achieve my aspiration of becoming a P.E teacher.”

This latest recognition comes after Emma was shortlisted for the Disability Sportswoman of the Year 2017 at last week’s Vitality Sportswomen of the Year Awards in London. Having had a phenomenal 12 months which has seen Emma retain her British, European and World Championship titles, Emma now holds the prestigious Grand Slam champion status, as she is the reigning Olympic, World and European champion, after her gold medal at Rio 2016.

Emma was amongst eleven influential figures being recognised for contributions to their fields, which also included Team GB sailors Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark, as well as Olympic windsurfer Nick Dempsey. They joined more than 2,000 graduates at the Chichester Festival Theatre on Sunday 5 and Monday 6 November.

Nekoda Davis

Nekoda Davis continues good form with Bronze at Abu Dhabi Grand Slam

EMERGE Sports Management athlete Nekoda Davis has continued her great form with a bronze medal at the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam. The British -57kg judoka beat world number seven Jessica Klimkait of Canada in a rematch of their round of 16 contest from the 2017 World Championships.

Klimkait got the better of the early stages with some good movement and fast gripping, before Nekoda asserted her dominance after gaining control of her opponent, and forcing Klimkait to concede the three shido penalties to pick up the victory.

Nekoda had started the day with a solid victory over Nazakat Azizova of Azerbaijan, before a close defeat against Russian Anastasiia Konkina in the quarter finals, meant she had to drop into the repechage group. Another victory against Poland’s Anna Borowska by waza-ari meant Nekoda would end the competition competing for the bronze medal.

Speaking after picking up her medal Nekoda said: “I came to win today so the loss in the quarter final really knocked me and I found it hard to pick myself up for the bronze fight. I am glad I could finish off the day with the medal despite how I was feeling.”

Her performance impressed British Judo Elite Performance Coach Kate Howey MBE who has seen Nekoda show signs of improvement over her last few competitions: “Although Nekoda was not at her best today she still performed well enough to take the bronze. Since the Worlds she has been on a heavy programme in the gym and technically in the mat.

“The pleasing thing about today is some of the technical drills are working in competition already.”

This latest medal comes after an impressive couple of months for Nekoda after picking up Silver at the World Championships in Budapest in August, and a further bronze medal at the Zagreb Grand Prix in last month. This run of good forms comes after a difficult start to the year when she had to undergo wrist and thumb surgery which saw her miss out on the European Championships in April.

Nekoda will look to continue her run of medals, and round off a successful 2017, with a positive performance at the Tokyo Grand Slam in December.

Shona McCallin guest of honour at Aldi Skegness opening

EMERGE athlete Shona McCallin was the latest Team GB star to host the opening of one of Aldi’s newest stores. Shona cut the ribbon to officially open the new supermarket in the Quora Retail Park on Burgh Road in Skegness.

Speaking during the ceremony, Shona revealed her connection with the town: “I’m really delighted to be opening the Aldi store in Skegness. I used to come to Skegness on holiday so have lots of happy memories here. I’ve been in the area visiting schools and I’m here today with my grandma and we are hoping to go and have a look around later.”

The local public queued outside the Skegness store from 7am, eager to see the opening ceremony and have a look around the aisles. Shona was alongside store manager Shaun Bolland in welcoming shoppers through the doors, as well as members of the Skegness RNLI and the Salvation Army.

After the opening ceremony, Shona also led a tour of the shop via Facebook Live with local newspaper the Skegness Siren, and chatted to shoppers in store about the great British produce on offer. Shona was even on hand to offer training advice to young track and field Team GB prospect and European Bronze medallist, John Caborn: “She told me she does 10 training sessions a week, twice a day for four days, then goes swimming on her day off. I’m definitely not doing enough.”

As an official partner of Team GB, Aldi supplies food vouchers for the athletes so they can maintain a healthy diet which, according to Shona, is a big advantage: “For the 600 Team GB athletes in training, our food bill is an enormous outlay for us, so the vouchers are a huge help.”

Store manager Shaun Bolland commented on the day: “We’d like to say a big thank you to Shona and members of the Salvation Army and RNLI for their support this morning.”

If you would like to book Shona for an upcoming event appearance, please contact Jenny Forbes at jenny@emergesportsmanagement.co.uk.

For more information on Shona, visit www.shonamccallin.com.

ParalympicsGB para canoeist Emma Wiggs MBE nominated for Sunday Times Disability Sportswoman of the Year 2017

ParalympicsGB para canoeist Emma Wiggs MBE nominated for Sunday Times Disability Sportswoman of the Year 2017

EMERGE Sport Management athlete Emma Wiggs MBE has made the shortlist for the Sunday Times Disability Sportswoman of the Year 2017.

Her nomination comes after a phenomenal 12 months which has seen Emma retain her British, European and World Championship titles. Those titles, along with her Gold medal at the Rio 2016 Paralympics, means she currently has the distinction of being a Grand Slam champion, a rarity in modern sport, and puts her amongst the greats of British sporting heroes, including athletics’ Sir Mo Farah and swimming’s Adam Peaty.

The awards, which are now in their 30th year, recognise the outstanding contribution to sport made by elite athletes, coaches, administrators, community volunteers and inspirational women. The Sportswomen Awards are among the most prestigious and influential in the British sporting calendar and are supported by the Sport and Recreation Alliance, UK Sport, Sport England and Women in Sport.

Following an open public vote for nominations, which closed at midday on Monday 25th September, a panel of experts narrowed the nominees down to a final shortlist for each award category which were announced yesterday. The other nominees for the award are Emma’s British paracanoe teammate Jeanette Chippington, wheelchair sprinter Hannah Cockroft, and sprinter Sophie Hahn.

Speaking after learning of her nomination, Emma said; “I am incredibly proud to be nominated for the Sunday Times Disability Sportswoman of the Year award, and want to thank everyone who voted for me. I have trained so hard this year, especially the long hours in the gym working on getting stronger, so it’s been a great seeing the hard work pay off on the water. I’m honoured to be shortlisted alongside my teammate Jeanette as well, demonstrating the strength of British paracanoeing at the moment, and the great support team we have in place.”

Last year’s Disability Sportswoman of the Year award was won by parasport sprinter and para-cyclist Kadeena Cox, and other previous winners include wheelchair tennis player Jordanne Whiley and Paralympic swimmer Stephanie Slater.

The other awards up for grabs this year are the coveted Sportswoman of the Year, Young Sportswoman of the Year, Team of the Year, Lifetime Achievement Award and The Helen Rollason Award for Inspiration. There is also a special community award, which will honour an individual who has actively engaged different groups of people within their community through sport. A two-week public vote for the Community Award is currently underway via the Sportswoman of the Year website.


A full list of nominees for all the awards can be seen below:

The Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year

Elinor Barker (Track Cycling)

Elise Christie (Short-Track Speed Skating)

Jodie Taylor (Football)

Tammy Beaumont (Cricket)

Johanna Konta (Tennis)

Bianca Walkden (Taekwondo)

Young Sportswoman of the Year

Freya Anderson (Swimming)

Ellie Downie (Artistic Gymnastics)

Millie Knight (Para-Skiing)

Sammi Kinghorn (Para-Athletics)

Disability Sportswoman of the Year

Emma Wiggs (Canoeing)

Jeanette Chippington (Canoeing)

Sophie Hahn (Athletics)

Hannah Cockroft (Athletics)


The Awards will be held at a ceremony in central London, on Thursday 26th October, and broadcast live from 8pm on Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Mix and Sky Sports Action.

For more information on the Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year Awards, please visit www.sportswomanoftheyear.co.uk.

Nominate Emma Wiggs for the Sunday Times Sportswomen of the Year Awards after World and European golds

A year ago to the day EMERGE athlete Emma Wiggs claimed her Paralympic Gold medal at Rio 2016 and started a year of incredible success.

After an incredible 12 months in which she also retained her World and British titles, and reclaimed European gold, Emma now holds the prestigious Grand Slam champion status. Only Sir Mo Farah and Adam Peaty have similar status when it comes to British athletes, further cementing her place as one of the best athletes in the UK.

There are few athletes who can claim to have had as successful a year as Emma in world sport, which is why she is a worthy candidate for the Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year Award. Voting for nominations is currently open to the public, with a panel of experts shortlisting for the seven award categories once voting closes at midday on Monday 25th September.

Now in their 30th year, the Awards celebrate the outstanding contribution to sport made by elite athletes, coaches, administrators, community volunteers and inspirational women. The winners will then be revealed at a glitzy ceremony at the Hilton London Bankside hotel on the evening of Thursday 26th October.

Previous winners of the main award, the coveted Sportswoman of the Year accolade, include Sally Gunnell, Denise Lewis, Dame Kelly Holmes, Zara Phillips, Victoria Pendleton, Christine Ohuruogu and Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill.

To nominate Emma for both Sportswoman of the Year, and Disability Sportswoman of the Year awards, visit www.sportswomenoftheyear.co.uk.