Juggling her education while preparing for the Youth Olympic Games has become a normal way of life for 17-year-old Hamilton teenager Kayla Goodwin.

A Year 12 student at Sacred Heart Girls College, studying six subjects at NCEA Level 2, being a sport's ambassador at school, playing and captaining the SHCG 1st XI football team and filling in where possible for the Hamilton Wanderers Football Club Women's team are just some of the events in Kayla's diary.

Now with the third Youth Olympic Games in Argentina approaching, Kayla is training day and night for the tournament, after being selected to represent New Zealand.

"This is only the third time that the summer youth Olympics have been held and I feel very privileged to be able to represent New Zealand at this event," Kayla said.


She said she became involved in athletics at 4 years old, after watching both her dad and brother involved in the sport.

"It just seemed a natural thing to do. My Dad was at the track coaching and my older brother had just started competing, so I just wanted to join the party."

Kayla is currently ranked number one in New Zealand for triple jump, long jump, 100m hurdles, and heptathlon for U18 and holds the NZ record for both the triple jump and heptathlon.

Last year she was placed fifth in the long jump and 14th in the 100m hurdles at the Youth Commonwealth Games in the Bahamas.

"This experience taught me so much about myself and proved to me that hard work and dedication pays dividends."

Finding a healthy balance between her education and sports has been a key part of her preparation for the youth Olympic games.

"Along with training every day for athletics I also have two football training for school and then come home and do a few hours of homework each night.

"When I am available I also play for both the Wanderers NRFL Premier team and premier reserve team which is always fun.


"It is a challenge because I want to do well in everything I do."

"I am excited to be a part of another multi sport event and am looking forward to being in this environment again. It is always fun to go and support as well as learn from other New Zealand athletes that are competing."

"The standard in my event, triple jump, has really improved since the last Games so it is going to be very tough. My goal is to make the top half so I can contend for a medal."

She has set up a Givelittle page and is looking for help so she is able to attend the event in October.