A TEAM GB kayaking star was forced to make major changes to her fitness routine to keep active during the coronavirus lockdown.

Emma Witherford, who is from Malvern, said she had to adapt after her usual training facilities in Nottingham closed.

She said: “The not-so roomy nature of student accommodation (and lack of outdoor space/training equipment) meant I soon made the return journey to my family home in Malvern. This physical move gave me a fresh outlook on the situation and shift in mindset of what could still be achieved.

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"Within the first few days, my childhood summerhouse was converted into a mini-gym, with weights and a bench kindly lent by a neighbour, and I was enjoying the daily hour outside in the fields and hills near our house. Training in the mornings and evenings, with walks and cycles during the afternoon, I soon adapted to my new ‘normal’.”

The 21 year-old said keeping motivated during lockdown was tough but she can't wait to get back to competing properly.

She said: “Managing my time effectively between studying, working, training and competing has been vital over the last few years, so setting myself a routine (and sticking to it) has helped me maintain productivity.

"Although I can’t wait to get back to what I love doing with no restrictions, this pandemic has allowed me to learn about myself and my approach to training, as well as focus my energy into what I can control – university work, training, and nutrition.” Currently ranked 3rd in last year’s GB selection, Emma hopes to compete in the European Championships in October, as well as the ICF World Championships in Nottingham in 2021.