You Won’t Believe How Many Shoots At Goal Jo Harten Does Per Week

Age: 27

Team: Giants Netball

Comp: Suncorp Super Netball, inaugural season Feb 18 to late Jun 2017

Position: GS (Goal Shooter), GA (Goal Attack)

How did you start playing netball?

I started playing when I was 6 years old. I’d previously seen my mum involved in and around the netball courts and wanted to give it a go. To be honest, I liked the look of the uniform! I was fascinated that you got to wear a bib. I also liked how fast the ball moved around the court. 

What do you love most about netball?

The competition. Using what you know, the skills that my teammates and I have practiced, coupled with my fitness, to try and beat the opposition. 

When did you become a pro netball player?

I got my first pro contract in 2011 when I signed for the Mainland Tactix in New Zealand.

What’s your training schedule like?

Busy. We train Monday to Friday, usually with matches at the weekend. Pre-season we hit the gym two to three times a week for strength and power sessions, coupled with two to three on-court team trainings. As a [goal] shooter, I have to fit my own personal shooting practice in, with 1000 shots a week.

Do you work in another job as well as playing netball?

At the moment my focus is netball. I have coaching roles that complement my playing career; back in the UK I’ve started a small coaching business to help supplement my playing income. I’m lucky that most of my coaching roles are developed with an understanding of my changing playing schedule. As I split my year between the UK and Australia, I have to be super organised in arranging work opportunities that don’t clash with Super Netball or International commitments.

Do you look forward to the day when professional sportswomen won’t need to work to subsidise their incomes?

Yes! That day is on the horizon I believe, but a lot of hard work needs to take place before women can be seen solely as sports professionals. 

What would you say to a woman toying with the idea of trying netball for the first time?

Give it a go! Bring a couple of friends along to a taster session. It beats trying to get fit on a treadmill in the gym any day. You’ll be surprised by how good you feel after a game. 

In what ways does netball benefit your health and fitness?

For me, netball’s a great stress reliever. You can focus on throwing a really hard pass or narrowing in on shooting the perfect goal. It takes your mind to another place, and at the same time helps by improving cardio capabilities as well as toning your calves, quads and arms.

What do you like doing in your downtime?

Exploring. I love travelling to new places, drinking coffee and watching as many sunsets as possible.

What’s something most people wouldn’t know about you?

I have a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations.

Discover what the Women’s Health initiative WinS is and how you can get involved here.

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