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Colleen Edwards QRL Content Producer – statewide competitions / women’s media

Easts Tigers player Tayla Eldridge has had a life-long love of sport, including rugby league.

Originally playing as a junior, Eldridge stopped when she turned 12, before the opportunities that are open to young girls today became readily available.

The five-eighth returned to the game a few seasons ago as a senior and earlier this year, made her statewide competitions debut in Round 1 of the BHP Premiership.

With a new season to look forward to in the future, Eldridge took the time out to take part in the ‘fast five’ questions challenge.

Football family – does anyone in your family play? Who / with which team? If not, did a friend sign you up?

When I was a little kid (around six years old), my parents were taking my brothers to sign up for rugby union at our local club and I asked if I could play as well. I had four brothers, so I was definitely used to the contact as we were constantly playing footy in the backyard. I played a mixture of league and union up until I was 12, but unfortunately girls didn’t have a competition beyond that at the time. But then a few years later, a girl who I played with in an under 12 at Wynnum Manly (we were the only two girls in the whole comp), Liahona Theodore, was playing for Easts Tigers. So I was super excited to play again with her and signed up.

Favourite footy memory?

My favourite memory would have to be playing at Robina Stadium with the women’s Titans Blue team. It was such a great experience playing in an elite stadium. It was a huge opportunity for everyone involved to show our skill and grow women’s sport as we played before an NRL match there. It would be great to have a larger following of the women’s sport, and with events like this, I think it will get there.

Fashion – what’s the most worn item in your wardrobe?

It’s not exactly in my wardrobe, but I would have to say my Garmin watch. I love being able to track my every move and constant heart rate throughout the day. My favourite feature is how it tracks my sleep. I think it’s such an important aspect of recovery and daily life. I always make sure I get my eight hours … and sometimes more.

Fitness tips? Any favourite exercises / tips for staying motivated?

I already mentioned being able to track my progress with my watch, but besides that, I would have to say my friends. I love training in a group situation as it pushes me to my limits and holds me accountable. Although training in groups hasn’t been possible recently, I have been making short-term goals and training programs that myself and friends can stick to. It helps me stay motivated and makes training more fun, knowing your friend will be dying just as much as you.

Find out more – is there anything you are studying, reading, watching now that you are spending more time at home?

Usually, I love being out and about as much as I can on my weekends, but since Covid-19, I have had to get creative. Lately, my partner and I have been completing board game escape rooms, adventure games and puzzles. We love to keep our mind active and these definitely challenge us to think outside the box.