Featured Athlete: Ana Laura Faoro

Ana+Laura+Faora+began+diving+four+years+ago.+She+said+the+adrenaline+rush+is+what+motivates+her+to+compete.

Courtesy of Ana Laura Faoro

Ana Laura Faora began diving four years ago. She said the adrenaline rush is what motivates her to compete.

Four years ago, senior Ana Laura Faoro began a shift from gymnastics to diving. In the midst of her transition she moved from Wakeland to Lovejoy, joining the school’s diving team. She also dives for the Dallas Metroplex Diving club and competes on the national level. Faoro competed at the state meet this past weekend in Austin, taking 7th overall in one meter diving. 

Pre-Game

Dream job: Plastic surgeon 

Favorite snack: Fruit snacks

Favorite hobby: Going to the lake with my lab

Favorite vacation spot: Brazil to visit family 

Post-Game

The Red Ledger: How did you make the transition from gymnastics to diving? 

Ana Laura Faoro: My friend asked me to join her at a diving summer camp in Frisco, and I loved every minute of it. 

TRL: What made you continue to want to dive? 

AF: The feeling I got from diving off of the board was unlike any other I had ever experienced. I get such an adrenaline rush every practice. Also, my teammates in diving are another reason I have continued to do it. Without their support, I don’t think I would still be doing it today. 

TRL: What are the steps that you take when practicing and competing? 

AF: When practicing, the main focus is the basics, like learning body awareness while in the air. Without the basics, it is very hard to keep learning new dives and doing them without hurting yourself. As for competitions, you just have to take it one dive at a time and only worry about yourself.

TRL: What have been your challenges with diving over the years? 

AF: I have had many mental blocks over the years, so having the mental strength to push through them and continue on is most likely the hardest challenge every diver has. 

TRL: How have you handled obstacles in diving? 

AF: When faced with an obstacle that’s hard to handle, turning to teammates is one of the best solutions. They are always there to support you and most of the time have been through the same situation in diving. So it’s good to know you have a good support system that will help you get through it. 

TRL: Who is your biggest support mentor within diving 

AF: I would have to say my mom. Although she doesn’t really know much about diving, she is there at every meet and cheering me on. If I have a bad day at practice, she is there to pick me up. She is my biggest, most constant support.

Courtesy of Ana Laura Faoro
Senior Ana Laura Faoro (middle row, second from left) and the swim team head off to the state meet. The swim team prepared all year to get to state.

TRL: Who else is on the diving team?

AF: There is one other senior, Sierra Rodriguez. She just recently started diving and is such a great teammate. Meets are fun with her and I love cheering her on.

TRL: Can you tell me more about your club diving?

AF: So my club practices six days a week for two and a half hours everyday. Our season starts in February and only ends in August. And through my club I get the opportunity to compete nationally and make friends all over the United States. I have also met some of my best friends through club diving. 

TRL: What are some of your accomplishments? 

AF: I have made it to state all three years that I have been on the high school team, and last year I got Female Diver of the Year and Newcomer of the Year.  

TRL: What is the biggest obstacle in diving? 

AF: Getting over the fear aspect. You will always have the fear, but the feeling you get after overcoming your fears will always be so much greater than letting it take over. 

TRL: Does it hurt when you hit the water? 

AF: Yes. In diving, when you hit the water wrong, it’s called a “smack,”and smacks hurt very badly sometimes. 

TRL: How do you train outside the water? 

AF: Everyday before we get into the water, we have a dry-land workout. Which consists of doing some trampoline work, flips on the mat, and conditioning. This helps us build the muscles we need either in the air or for on the board. 

TRL: Do you plan on diving after high school?

AF: Yes, I am committed to dive at the University of Connecticut. I can’t wait to begin next semester.