By Emma Halliday
Since joining UQ Rugby Club in 2002, Heather Arthy has made a large impact on the Red Heavies community.
Heather is currently the Head Sports Trainer at the club but for those who know her, her role extends far beyond the title.
When she is not at the club, Heather is an emergency nurse at St. Andrews Hospital.
She is a familiar face on training nights and game days, and during the season can spend on average 20 hours a week volunteering her time and expertise.
On a week-to-week basis her responsibilities vary and range considerably.
Some of those jobs include ordering of medical stock, following up on player injuries, logistics for the upcoming weekend including trainer and doctor coverage of games, and organising any teaching on club training nights for trainers.
Although Heather is not one for the limelight, we recently sat down with her to ask some questions about her time at the Club.
How did you become a member of the club?
My sister Catriona is the one that got me into it in the first place. At the end of 2001 she asked me to come and help her look after the Colts, then for the next nine years Colts were my world. I couldn’t have imagined I would still be at the Club 18 years on.
What is the best part about being at the club?
The biggest buzz I get is helping someone come back from a complex and long-term injury, knowing that I helped them along the way. Seeing all their hard work during rehab and then watching them run out onto the field again for the first time. That is the best bit.
What keeps you coming back?
I just love it. Initially when I started it was a sort of relaxation. Work was an extremely stressful environment and coming to the club was my down time. When I would have really bad days at work, within an hour of being at training I was laughing with the boys and it just became an outlet.
What is one reason you like working in your role?
I have loved helping to educate all my trainers over the years. I love watching them grow into confident young practitioners. One of my students – Nicole, even went on to study medicine and she was the team doctor for the Wallaroos. Knowing that I got to share the knowledge that I have and that it might have helped her is really special.
Do you have a favourite team to work with?
I love all the teams but I am always going to have a soft spot for Colts as it is where I started out at the club. I just love them because every year the players change but the mentality is the same. You are watching them grow, especially over the first six months. They have such a great energy and enthusiasm each and every year.
Any memorable moments over the years?
There has been so many over my time. The best ones are the Grand Final wins. I still remember the 2014 Premier Grade Grand Final. Pincus kicking the winning goal after the siren. I could barely watch. To win that one was a highlight.
Do you have a mantra or motto when you are at the club?
The thing I say the most is that if we do our job right we are invisible. If we are doing a good job, the players are ready when the coaches need them. There is a lot of time that goes into making that happen but that is what we are here for. I’m not the focus of the club or team. I’m a cog in the wheel of a lot of volunteers that get these teams out on the field every week.