My Story on and off the court

Radio Interviews August / September 2021

AJ 5 Radio 5Live 1st Sept 2021Anna Jackson
00:00 / 06:15
AJ Radio Merseyside 24 Sept 2021 2021Anna Jackson
00:00 / 09:29
AJ - BBC Radio Manchester Interview 29 Aug 2021Anna Jackson
00:00 / 09:02

From Hockey pitch to Paralympic Games

I was born in the lovely North Wales town of Ruthin and went to Primary and Secondary School there.  When I was in School I was not very academic – I was always more interested in Sport and when I got further through school all I wanted to do was go in the RAF. Knee problems put paid to my RAF dream. But not to sport...

I will always remember a teacher saying to me that I would never achieve anything

if I did Sport all the time!

I retired from Hockey in 1995 and had a couple of years without sport but in 1997 my life changed forever when I discovered Wheelchair Basketball. 

In March 1998 after only playing for six months I was selected to join the Great Britain Women's Team.

My first experience of playing for the Great Britain Team was at the World Championships in Sydney 1998. I will never forget the amazing feeling of pulling on a GB vest for the first time – I was so proud and nervous all at the same time! 

I competed at Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games and that was the most amazing experience of my life. 

In 2008 after playing with GB for 10 yrs and getting more than 80 GB caps I decided it was time to retire from International Basketball. 

I loved playing for the Great Britain team and will treasure my experiences and always remember the places I have been and the people I have met.

 

I look forward to introducing people to the sport and hopefully changing their lives in the way mine has been changed through sport.  

Believe It Coaching/photos/Anna playing for GB
Believe It Coaching/photos/Anna as a Warrant Officer with RAF Air Cadets

I was an instructor with the Royal Air Force Air Cadets for 27yrs and spent 19 of those years as a Warrant Officer. 

I was Head Coach for the Wales U19 Teams at Junior Championships and School Games 2016 and 2017 and the Assistant U19 Coach for the 2018 School Games and 2018 and 2019 Junior Championships.  

I am now the Head Coach for Cheshire Phoenix Wheelchair Basketball Club and am a Tutor for British Wheelchair Basketball and a Mentor for the new 'Inspire a Generation' Activators.  

I have recently passed the Grade 3 Advanced Wheelchair Basketball Coach award and am honoured to be one of a small group of Grade 3 Coaches in the UK.

I believe that by being an International Athlete and a person with a disability and a mental health condition I have learned skills and techniques that I can use to help others perform to the best of their abilities either in life or in sport.  

I have had Mental Health problems for a number of years and am quite open about the challenges I face with Depression and Anxiety.  I am a Mental Health First Aider and Youth Mental Health First Aider and believe that it is vital we get the whole issue of Mental Health out in the open and help stop the stigma that many people face.  

I was diagnosed as Autistic in 2020 and have recently been diagnosed with ADHD.  I think that these two things explain a lot about some of the difficulties I have had in life and I am excited to learn more about how both conditions effect me so that I can continue to work on being the best version of me possible.

I truly believe that my successes and struggles have made me the person I am today.  I am a qualified to Level 2 in British Sign Language and Level 3 in Counselling skills and am currently studying the MA in Clinical Counselling at the University of Chester. 

Believe It Coaching/photos/Anna Coaching Chesire Phoenix Wheelchair Basketball Club

My business is named 'Believe it' after Dame Kelly Holmes signed a book for me saying 'Anything is possible if you Believe it ' so I decided to use that to motivate me and remind me of where I am today thanks to the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust and all the people who have helped me in my Sporting Career.

Believe It Coaching/photos/Dame Kelly Holmes Athens 2004
Believe It Coaching/photos/Dame Kelly Holmes signature in book