Women & Girls in Sport: Grace Molloy

For the first day of Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week – which runs from September 28 – October 4 – we’re highlighting multiple Junior World Orienteering Championship medallist, Grace Molloy.

The week gives an opportunity to highlight women and girls taking part in sport and physical activity. This year’s theme is “Leaders within Women and Girls Sport” – as well as those who support leaders to be the best they can be – and Grace is someone who makes a great impact on the sport of orienteering.

Grace Molloy racing hard at JWOC 2017 in the great outdoors

Who are you?

My name is Grace Molloy. I am 19 and I compete for Scotland and Great Britain.

How long have you been orienteering?

Since I was born really! But more seriously for around 6 years.

How long have you been leading?

I have always tried to act as a positive role model but since I started competing internationally in 2016 I have had more opportunity to inspire others. I have also enjoyed coaching orienteering over the last few years.

How did you get into becoming a leader? (E.g. what inspired you and what courses you completed)

I try to inspire people who do not orienteer to engage with the sport and also those who are already involved in the sport to improve and strive to achieve their goals.

I introduced 15 of my peers to orienteering in 2013 and took them to the Scottish Schools Orienteering Festival. I completed a coaching foundation course in 2017 and have coached with the Scottish Junior Squad, my school and the Junior Regional Orienteering Squads through a variety of training sessions, week-long camps.

I also spent 6 months as an orienteering coach in Australia where I planned and organised events, ran weekly training sessions, learned to map and worked with the NSW junior squad at the national championships and training camps. I also try to inspire others by performing at a high level at national and international orienteering competitions.

What do you enjoy about leading in orienteering?

I enjoy seeing others have fun orienteering and improve their skills.

What would you like to achieve in future?

I would like to keep volunteering on training camps in particular as these are what I enjoy the most. In my own orienteering I would like to win gold at the Junior World Orienteering Championships 2020 and then go on to compete for Great Britain at the Senior World Orienteering Championships.

What advice would you give to anyone – whatever their gender – about becoming a leader?

It is very easy to become involved in leading in orienteering and many people are already leaders in the sport without really realising it. If you want to coach or help out or plan events then there are lots of people who can support you with this and it is very rewarding.