Athlete of the Month - Julie Rodrigue
Date of birth: July 30, 1985
Height: 1m 83
Hometown: Quebec City
Years on national team: 5
Beach partner: Kacie McTavish
After a successful university career with Laval, Julie Rodrigue switched to the beach circuit in 2008 and has been a Canadian national team member ever since. In 2012, she is starting her second season with Kacie McTavish of Sharon, Ont., and the pair would love nothing more than t earn a berth on the 2012 Olympic team.
In 2011, the pair enjoyed a solid season capped with a gold medal at the national championships. Another highlight was qualifying for a Grand Slam event in the FIVB Pro Tour circuit. The pair, which trains at the national training cent re in Toronto, stood out last season with its strong serving game.
Rodrigue came from a sporting family including her father who was a cross country runner. She was involved in numerous sports but it was a physical education teacher in high school who recommended she pursue a volleyball career. At Laval, she won a national title in her rookie season and was named the MVP in the championship game. Watching athletes like Sylvie Fréchette, Donovan Bailey and beach volleyball players Guylaine Dumont and Annie Martin solidified her ambitions to pursue the Olympic dream.
Having played both indoors and outdoors, Rodrigue says beach volleyball players have to be very resourceful in order to assure they receive the training, coaching and other high performance athlete needs to be successful. But she loves the lifestyle of being a professional beach volleyball player and feels blessed to practice a sport she loves for her living.