FFS Physio Team Grows - “No goal too far away, no mountain too high”

Introducing Kathryn Dane, FFS Physiotherapy's latest addition. Here Kathryn talks to us about joining Team FFS as well as playing with the Irish Women's Rugby team.

“There’s no goal too far away, no mountain too high”

Introducing Kathryn Dane

My name is Kathryn Dane. I graduated from Physiotherapy Trinity College Dublin in April 2019 with an ambition to one day work with athletes. At age 22 and coming from the lovely County Fermanagh, I never imagined myself working as a Physiotherapist in a top-class gym in Dublin 2.

I have played rugby from the age of eight, starting at Enniskillen RFC with the underage boys' teams and progressing to Old Belvedere women RFC, DUFC, Ulster Senior Women, and, most recently, Ireland Senior Women.

Towering at 5ft 3.5 inches and weighing 55kg most people that meet me find it difficult to believe I play with Ireland Senior Women’s Rugby team. I sometimes struggle to believe it myself. The first game of the 2019 Six Nations Championship is when I debuted against England women. It is a moment I will treasure forever- not just for the experience of running out in the green jersey in front of thousands of supporters but for the journey that got me there.

I won’t deny that my path to playing for Ireland and qualifying as a Physiotherapist was far from straightforward and littered with obstacles. Both endeavours tested my resilience, commitment, patience, and optimism.

Playing for the Irish Senior Women's Rugby Team

For example, when I first got called up to Ireland training camp in January 2019 it coincided with writing my dissertation- so the worstpossible timing. I had an overwhelming fear of failure, a fear of my inadequacies becoming exposed. I didn’t feel like I deserved to be there, I told myself“my head isn’t in it”, “I am far too distracted with my degree”

and“I am probably going to be no more than a tackle bag holder”. Luckily, I had very wise parents to remind me that “I have nothing to lose” and“failure is only a success if we learn from it”.

I persisted with the winter training camps, dissertation all-nighters, 6am gym in the Aviva Stadium, an obsolete social life, and gruelling conditioning and fitness testing. My perseverance was questioned at times but I trusted and adhered to the process. It all became worthwhile when I was fortunate to come off the bench for the first two Six Nations games and win a starting place for the remaining three games. Managing to play for Ireland and graduate with a BSc (hons) in Physiotherapy from Trinity College Dublin in the same year is definitely one of the hardest challenges I have had to face but easily the biggest achievement of my life so far.

Joining the FFS Team

Another huge success for me is recently joining the FFS team as a second Physiotherapist. I am fortunate to be under the guidance of the highly experienced Eric Cullinane (MISCP). Whilst I am relatively green to the world of MSK physiotherapy, I know that the FFS team will enable, inspire and motivate me to gain the skills and knowledge to become a successful physiotherapist. I am excited to be a part of such a professional, innovative and dynamic team.

I want to share my story because I see so many people who are afraid to make a move in the right direction. People who set the bar too low and underestimating their true potential. The only thing I fear now is regret.

Kathryn’s words of advice:

If you truly want something, figure out the steps involved and how to get it, then walk that path, it might not be straightforward and it may take longer than anticipated but take each step reminding yourself of yourpurpose.

Know why you get out of bed in the morning.

Surround yourself with positive people who enable, inspire, and motivate you to reach your goals.

Develop a firm self-belief and never underestimate your ability to succeed- whether it be exams, fitness- testing, team trials or interviews- even when it seems the odds are against you.

Have no regrets

Say yes to absolutely every opportunity that comes your way. We gain what we want from each opportunity-“Nothing ventured, nothing gained”.

“No goal is too far away, no mountain too high”

Find Out More:

If you need advice or a physiotherapy assessment, contact Kathryn at kathryn@ffs.ie or visit www.ffs.ie/physiotherapy.

About the Author:

Kathryn Dane is a Chartered Physiotherapist working with FFS Physiotherapy, a practice based on Leeson St Lower. Chartered Physiotherapists have specialist knowledge in the field of work-related injury management.

She also plays for the Ulster Senior Women’s Rugby team and Irish Senior Women’s rugby team.

If you need advice or a physiotherapy assessment, contact Kathryn at kathryn@ffs.ie or visit www.ffs.ie/physiotherapy.