SPORTS BABE OF THE DAY CAMPUS EDITION PRESENTS: REBECCA VANDERZALM, RUGBY PLAYER, BROCK UNIVERSITY BADGERS, @Rebeccavdz on Twitter
20 year old, 5’7”, Full-Back, Rebecca VanderZalm completed her first year with the Brock Badgers Women’s Rugby Team. Not just a pretty face, Rebecca pretty much does it all. Not only playing rugby with Brock but as well as the St.Catharines Tigers Rugby Club and formerly playing for her high school rugby team, Holy Cross. Rebecca is also figure skater with over 17 years’ experience, skating with Niagara-On-The-Lake Skating Club, she holds Skate Canada Gold in Dance, Interpretive, and Skills! When Rebecca isn’t busy with rugby, skating or school you can find her spending time with her amazingly big family and friends!
Rebecca was kind enough to take some time out of her busy schedule to give us an interview.
1. How old were you when you started skating, and why did you decide to lace up?
I was 3 when I put on my first pair of skates for a CanSkate lesson. I continued to skate, following in the steps of my mom and 4 older sisters.
2. What is your major and why did you choose it?
Bachelor of Early Childhood Education, because I just love kids and the energy they have for life.
3. What first drew you into the sport of Rugby?
I became interested when 2 of my sisters played in their respective grade 12 years, but it wasn’t until I was in grade 9 and the rugby coach came up to me in the hallway and told me that “I looked like a rugby player” and that I should play.
4. Were there skaters you aspired to be like when you were growing up?
I looked up to Jamie Salé. She always looked like she was having the time of her life while she was skating.
5. Growing up in a big household, what was that like?
Hectic, but being the second youngest I always had someone to play with!
6. Not all athletes are class acts, with that being said how do you conduct yourself on and off the ice/field? Do you consider yourself a role-model?
I’d consider myself a role-model! I work hard for what I do have and I enjoy volunteering and giving back to the communities and teams that I am or have been part of.
7. What is the biggest difference between high school rugby leagues and university that you have noticed?
I think the pace of a university game is a lot faster than a high school game, so it requires a more skill and thought while you’re playing.
8. How do you balance your school courses, rugby, skating and your social life?
You have to be pretty organized and schedule yourself accordingly.
9. How does it feel having Gold in Dance, Interpretive and Skills for skating, through Skate Canada?
Those Skate Canada Gold medals are accomplishments that I am extremely proud of! They show my work and dedication throughout my many years of skating.
10. How do you like being a part of the Brock Badgers community and athletic association?
I love it. It’s great to be a part of the badger community and see all of the different teams out supporting each other and various events.
11. What is your greatest accomplishment in sports and in life?
My greatest accomplishment in sports is having the ability to say I am a varsity athlete. As for life, just working my way through all of the ups and downs I’ve had to face.
12. Being in rugby and skating you have to be in good shape, what does your workout routine usually look like?
I’m sort of lucky. Both skating and rugby require a lot of the same muscle groups so my workouts for each sport kind of go hand in hand. I do a lot of lower body strength training, cardio and core.
13. What are 5 things you can’t live without?
14. What advice do you have for a young aspiring skater, whose just starting out?
Do it for yourself and to have fun. As long as you do your best and have fun while doing it, there is nothing to be disappointed about!
15. What are your pregame/pre-competition rituals and go-to pregame/pre-competition meals?
I listen to pump-up music and do a light pre-warm-up by myself before actually having to warm-up. As for meals, I’m a picky eater so I tend to stick to things like chicken and a salad or fresh raw veggies.
16. Are there any stereotypes about women’s rugby or women’s skating that you drive crazy?
It drives me nuts that people think/assume that if you play rugby you are gay when that is simply not the case. Also it bugs me that so many people do not classify figure skating as a sport and say that is easy, when in fact it takes a lot of physical and mental strength to complete the different requirements of skating.
17. How do you want to be remembered as an athlete?
I want to be remembered as a determined individual, who could have fun while still completing the necessary drills, etc. properly.
18. If you could go on a date with any celebrity you choose, who would you choose and where would you?
I would take Skylar Astin to a karaoke bar so he could sing to me all night.
19. Can you name one embarrassing rugby or skating related moment?
I’m such a clutz! It’s hard to pinpoint just one embarrassing moment because there have been so many!
20. Who would you like to see as our next SBOTDCE?
Mike Solanki player of Laurier Golden Hawks football.
HOT SEAT WITH REBECCA VANDERZALM
1. Name one person you’ve competed against, or played against that you’re still in awe of?
2. What’s your favourite movie?
3. What’s your favourite meal?
4. Name a unique fact that no one else would ever guess about you. (Doesn’t have to be sports related)
I had to have my gallbladder removed at 18.
5. Name a fear you have?
6. Favourite store or designer?
Costco! And Coach.
7. Favourite place to vacation?
Our family cottage
8. What is your favourite show you follow?
THIS OR THAT WITH REBECCA VANDERZALM
1. Long or short hair?
2. Beach house or Ski house?
3. Winter or Summer?
I LOVE BOTH!
4. Dress-up or Casual?
5. Comedy or Action?
6. Go out to the movies or Netflix?
7. Chocolate or Vanilla?
8. Rap or Country?
9. Dogs or Cats?
10. Twitter or Facebook?