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Welcome to the latest edition of our Scholars Q&A! In this weekly feature, we speak to a selection of our Team Surrey scholars to hear about their experiences and achievements within university sport and beyond.

Ellie Miles from University of Surrey Women’s Rugby has been training with Henley RFC in the Women’s Championship South 1 since her return from injury, while she has also taken up touch rugby and weightlifting over the past year.

The 22-year-old spoke to us about her productive use of lockdown to try out new things, her favourite things about Surrey and her long-term and short-term aims within rugby and other areas.


How have things been going with you recently? 

“Currently, I have returned from injury and have been in Rugby training with Championship side Henley RFC. I am also in the training squad for Surrey Sharks which is a regional touch team and I have taken up weightlifting to keep me occupied while training wasn’t on. I am looking to compete in this at the end of the year.

“I have really enjoyed using this lockdown to try out new sports such as touch rugby and weightlifting while focusing on key rugby skills.”


When and where did your rugby career begin?

“My rugby career started at my local rugby club, Tunbridge Wells Rugby Football Club, when I was 15/16 years old.”


What are your aims in sport moving forward?

“Short term, after many long-term injuries, I aim to gain experience in the sport through playing Championship rugby and playing in the sevens super league. I also would like to develop my knowledge and experience in Touch Rugby at regional level. In terms of Weightlifting, at the end of this year I aim to compete in the British Weightlifting Nationals.

“Long term, I would like to return to playing Premiership rugby, play national and international level in touch rugby and win medals at British National Weightlifting. Something that is also important to me is developing grassroots rugby, so I will also aim to carry on coaching where I can.”



How has the university supported you and your sporting endeavours?

“The university has helped me financially with a free gym membership as well as S+C session which has allowed me to access what I need to train optimally as well as safely.

“Equally, the workshops on nutrition and sport psychology have helped make sure I am fuelling my training and recovering appropriately both mentally and physically as this is something I have really struggled on previously.”


What would you say to prospective students considering Surrey?

“For new students joining the university I would say Surrey is a great place. The atmosphere around sport is incredible. All you need to do is throw yourself in and enjoy it.”


What has been the highlight of your time at Surrey?

“My highlight at Surrey would probably be the people I have met. Not only my peers and teammates, but also the lecturers and individuals at Surrey Sports Park.”



Quick-fire Questions

Sporting role model? “Nile Wilson.

Favourite meal? “Roast dinner.”

Favourite lockdown workout? “Kettle Bell HIIT session.

Favourite song for exercising/training? “The Business – Tiesto.”

Best thing about Surrey? “The people.”