15 year old Gregor Miller from Bridge of Earn has been achieving great things in the world of Judo, with three podium places in the past 12 months at the Northern Ireland Open 2019 (bronze), the Scottish Closed 2018 (silver) and the British Championships Cadets 2018 (silver), all in the u81kg category.
He now has his sights set firmly on Gold at the British Cadet Championships in December this year, and the Scottish Closed Championships in November where he’ll move into the u90kg category.
A dedicated young athlete, Gregor trains with Tayside Judo where he’s coached by Andy McInroy and David Scobbie, and his hard work and dedication has earned a place on the Judo Scotland Cadet Performance Squad where Gary Edwards is his coach. He is also one of the young athletes on the Live Active Leisure Talented Athlete scheme in Perth.
He has his sights set firmly on Gold at the British Cadet ChampionshipsGregor has been taking part in Judo since he was 6 years old when he took part in a taster session – lead by his now coach Andy - at Dunbarney Primary School and did a taster session.
“I enjoyed it right away but it was when I won a medal at the Mini Mons that I realised it could go further. Three years ago I got onto the Talent Development Squad with Judo Scotland and I started to compete in bigger competitions – winning Silver at the British Cadet Championships last year has been my biggest achievement to date.”
He is currently focused on the UK National Cadet Competitions, and trains several nights a week; on Tuesday nights you’ll find him at Perth High School where he trains with the adult club after he’s helped coach the younger club members (p6 to S1). When possible, he also attends the Ratho senior session with Judo Scotland on Thursday nights. On Mondays and Wednesdays you can find him in the Strength and Conditioning Gym at Bells Sports Centre training with Gil Stevenson. After a busy week, he spends his Saturdays at competitions across Scotland and into the UK.
Andy McInroy and David Scobie have been superb - they encourage me all the time.“I like grappling and fighting at the club and the excitement of competition – I’m hoping that next year I can make it to some European Competitions. Being part of the Talented Athlete Scheme means a lot to me – I’ve been training with Gil for 3.5 years now and my strength and technique has improved massively. I broke my leg at the British Schools competition 3 years ago and Gil kept me training even on one leg!”
As well as being part of the Talented Athlete Scheme, Gregor has been a member of the Live Active Performance Strength and Conditioning Athlete Squad for the past three years. This is a group of high performance athletes, who train twice weekly in the recently refurbished strength gym at Bell’s Sports Centre. The sessions provide benefits for both performance and injury prevention, and are coached by Gil Stevenson - who Gregor mentions above - a previous chair of the United Kingdom Strength and Conditioning Association and Honorary Fellow of the UKSCA.
He is one of the most committed athletes that attend, very rarely missing a session.Like any performance squad athlete, Gregor has a rounded approach to his fitness and can also be found at Live Active Rodney, making use of their cardio equipment.
“The gym membership allows me to keep fit and relax - I like the bikes, running and cross trainers for fitness, and I use the medicine balls and abs deck as well. Once I turn 16 I’ll be into the weights room! If I’m carrying a muscle injury then I do lane swimming at Perth Leisure Pool – it’s great for keeping moving without too much strain.”
Coach Gil said “Gregor has trained in the programme run by Live Active for 3 years. He is one of the most committed athletes that attend, very rarely missing a session. Even last year, with a spiral fracture in his leg, he still attended to do supported one legged squats!”
And it is the support of Gil, and his long term Judo coaches that Gregor is most grateful;
“Andy McInroy and David Scobie have been superb - they encourage me all the time. If anyone’s thinking of judo as a sport, I’d say to come along and have a go."
Check out Tayside Judo website for judo clubs in Perth and Perthshire.
Together with Sportscotland and the Tayside & Fife Institute of Sport, Live Active Leisure works in developing the additional needs of high achieving athletes in the area.
These are the young athletes who demonstrate the skill and commitment required to represent Scotland and Great Britain on an international stage. Live Active Leisure’s Talented Athletes’ Scheme supports these young people by providing assistance and free access to their venues.
This enables them to reach their full potential and to achieve world class performance levels. This is about nurturing and developing our local talent by helping these young athletes train and grow in the support network of their home towns and city. By doing this, they hope to inspire other youngsters in Perth and Kinross and to bring that real sense of achievement a city embraces when celebrating the success of one of their own.
Members of the Talented Athlete Scheme can also apply to be part of the Perfromance Squad. The squads are currently full but there is a waiting list in place. Any queries can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. These opportunities have been made possible with financial support from both the Gannochy Trust and Sport Scotland.
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