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Kerri
Pottharst

Legendary volleyball player, Olympic Gold Medalist

Profile

Kerri Pottharst is Australia's most decorated Indoor and Beach Volleyball player, having represented her country for an incredible 20 years. Renowned for being one of the fiercest competitors in the world of Volleyball, Kerri is now also known for being a successful inspirational speaker and presenter, entrepreneur and published author.

She brings her hard-earned skills of leadership, teamwork, communication and more to Australia's corporate audiences with unforgettable tales that combine motivational messages with fun - and the rare experience of networking one on one with an Olympic hero!

When Kerri took up volleyball at the age of 15, she hadn't yet dreamed of becoming an Olympic champion. In 1992 a sickening knee injury should have ended her career, but in her typical no-nonsense style, Kerri recovered late in 1993, changed her goals to Beach Volleyball and then went on to compete in 3 Olympic Games and win two Olympic medals - Bronze at Atlanta and then the Gold against Brazil during the Sydney 2000 Games. As testament to Kerri's abilities, since 1994 she has never been out of the top 10 and rarely out of the top six in International Beach Volleyball events.

Current work

Having retired from International level competition, Kerri’s Golden journey continues as she now shares her Gold Medal Excellence strategies with corporate audiences to inspire them on their own journey to success. She works closely with her audiences, delivering inspirational presentations (that can be followed with a fun session of beach volleyball) and weaving important messages of teamwork, skill, trust, relationship building, leadership and communication into an unforgettable day that will deliver tangible results.

Using entertaining anecdotes from her experiences as a competitor, and as a regular commentator at the Olympic Games and other sporting events, Kerri motivates and inspires her audiences to overcome their fears and self doubts, to set goals and to push through the barriers to achieve them. An expert at reinventing herself time and time again, Kerri can relate to the constant need to deal with a changing world to stay successful and reach even greater goals.

Kerri’s unique message is as relevant to high level executives as it is to more junior teams, as reflected by her skills in coaching staff at all levels to work together as a cohesive and effective team. Her in-depth research and preparation ensures the content is relevant and specific to each audience, every time, A consummate professional and experienced presenter, she is as quick-thinking on her feet now as she was on the courts.

Amongst Kerri’s many skills is her innate ability to connect with the audience in a way that is warm, authentic, and most importantly, relatable. The same strategies that took her to Gold are easily adapted by audiences to achieve their own corporate and personal goals.

For many, the two highlights of Kerri’s presentations are the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for audiences to hold her Olympic Gold medal for themselves, and the Walk of Courage - the chance for them to push their personal boundaries by walking on broken glass.

Both unique experiences reinforce Kerri’s inspiration for everyone to become a champion in their own right.

Today she is known for being a successful inspirational speaker and presenter, entrepreneur and published author, sharing the insights and benefits of her champion mindset through many different channels / across many different mediums. Kerri is also a wife and Mum, balancing her thriving professional life with a busy home life with her husband and son.

Previous experience

The Athlete
When Kerri took up volleyball at the age of 15, she hadn't yet dreamed of becoming an Olympic champion. In 1992 a sickening knee injury should have ended her career, but in her typical no-nonsense style, Kerri recovered late in 1993, changed her goals to Beach Volleyball and then went on to compete in 3 Olympic Games and win two Olympic medals - Bronze at Atlanta and then the Gold against Brazil during the Sydney 2000 Games.

As testament to Kerri's abilities, since 1994 she has never been out of the top 10 and rarely out of the top six in International Beach Volleyball events. Her incredible sporting career also includes induction into the International Volleyball Hall of Fame, being nominated as Team of the Decade, and 25 podium finishes over 8 years on the World Beach Volleyball Tour.

Throughout her sporting career, Kerri endured six major knee surgeries after suffering significant injuries that would have signalled the end for many other athletes. Even she thought that without the all-encompassing indoor volleyball, her life would be over.

Yet being the true champion she is, this only served to inspire Kerri to change her goals, transitioning instead to beach volleyball. Her courage, determination and dedication saw her achieve her ultimate ambition of winning at the Olympics - nothing was going to stop her.

The Wife and Mum
After officially retiring from competition in 2004, Kerri married Max and they had a beautiful boy called Tyson, in 2006. With Tyson now a lively and fun-loving 11 year old, Kerri relishes motherhood and being able to share her ongoing love of sport and a healthy active lifestyle with him and Max, whilst also juggling the many facets of her flourishing career after volleyball.

The Speaker
As a highly sought after motivational speaker Kerri is entertaining, extremely inspiring and engages audiences with powerful messages to take away and create their own success.
She brings her hard-earned skills of leadership, teamwork, communication and more to Australia's corporate audiences with unforgettable tales that combine motivational messages with fun - and the rare experience of networking one on one with an Olympic hero!

Using entertaining anecdotes from her experiences as a competitor, and as a regular commentator at the Olympic Games and other sporting events, Kerri motivates and inspires her audiences to overcome their fears and self-doubts, to set goals and to push through the barriers to achieve them. An expert at reinventing herself time and time again, Kerri can relate to the constant need to deal with a changing world to stay successful and reach even greater goals.

Kerri’s unique message is as relevant to high level executives as it is to more junior teams, as reflected by her skills in coaching staff at all levels to work together as a cohesive and effective team. Her in-depth research and preparation ensures the content is relevant and specific to each audience, every time, A consummate professional and experienced presenter, she is as quick-thinking on her feet now as she was on the courts.

Amongst Kerri’s many skills is her innate ability to connect with the audience in a way that is warm, authentic, and most importantly, relatable. The same strategies that took her to Gold are easily adapted by audiences to achieve their own corporate and personal goals.

For many, the two highlights of Kerri’s presentations are the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for audiences to hold her Olympic Gold medal for themselves, and the walk of courage - the chance for them to push their personal boundaries by walking on broken glass.

Both unique experiences reinforce Kerri’s inspiration for everyone to become a champion in their own right.

The Author
After 25 years as an athlete, Kerri has learnt as much as there is to learn about sport and how to treat it as a "business." Hence, the title of her book - The Business of Being an Athlete, How to Build a Winning Career in Sport. To date, she has sold almost 5000 copies around the world. She is now delivering workshops, based on the book, to athletes around the country.

The Presenter
An accomplished and experienced media professional, Kerri’s career has included TV sports commentating for the Olympics in Beijing 2008, London 2012, and Rio 2016 for Channels 7 and 9, as well as regular appearances on shows like Sunrise, Wide World of Sports, and Mornings, plus numerous radio programs.

Most recently she has co-hosted 25 episodes of the Seven Network’s INSIDE VOLLEYBALL program, lending her vast knowledge and expertise to help raise the global profile of volleyball in Australia.

Equally as comfortable being interviewed herself or as a panel host interviewing guests, Kerri is a visually polished presenter who brings a witty personality, razor sharp thinking, and a broad appeal to a wide range of audiences.

The Health and Wellness Expert
The key to success, whatever health and wellness goals have been set, is to know where you’re at and identify what you need to improve in order to succeed. To identify what champions are doing - and mirror them to increase energy, improve health, and achieve peak performance. The components of an elite athlete lifestyle are surprisingly similar to today’s corporate lifestyle.

As a world-class champion athlete and now successful entrepreneur herself, Kerri has developed a health and wellness blueprint that mirrors the circles of the Olympic rings to represent the five core elements of Nutrition, Hydration, Recovery, Movement, and the key component - Mindset.

Mindset is the mental attitude that predetermines one’s responses to and interpretations of various situations - and Kerri teaches how that once your mindset changes and you understand it’s all about your attitude, everything on the outside will change too.

Part of mastering our mindset is mindfulness, and whilst this may be a concept that is new to many, Kerri has embodied the principles throughout her career by always being fully present with each aspect of the training and build up that led to her Olympic success.

By paying attention on purpose and directing our awareness, we can create stillness and balance of mind, and Kerri shares how to embrace this technique to create a space of freedom where calmness and contentment can grow.

Expertise
Topics

Sport

  • Olympics & Paralympics
Feedback
We were privileged to have Kerri Pottharst attend our Company Away Day recently. It was a fantastic experience to train and play several games (even being offered some match winning tips!) with not only a professional athlete, but such a great person. It was inspirational to have the opportunity to meet someone who has achieved so much in their sporting career, including the ultimate goal for any sportsperson: winning an Olympic medal. It certainly made mine and the rest of the Seafolly staff's day one to remember. Seafolly
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