Inspirational Amy’s ‘beauty with purpose’

An inspirational young Coleraine woman is proving that beauty can also have a purpose.

Friday, 14th May 2021, 10:26 am

18-year-old Amy Woodall is busy with A level exams AND is a brown belt judo coach who runs classes for young girls AND she has just reached the finals of the Miss Northern Ireland competition!

The Dalriada student is using her place in the beauty pageant to prove that young women can be whatever they want to be in life: “I love the fact that I can be all sweaty, with my hair in a messy bun doing judo one day and I can also enjoy the glitz and glam of the Miss NI competition too on a different day.”

Amy is passionate about the benefits judo can bring to anyone - whatever their age or ability.

Amy Woodall

“I’ve been doing judo since I was six years old as my dad is a coach so that’s how we spent all our Friday evenings,” she said.

A brown belt in the sport, Amy was about to go for her black belt when Covid-19 restrictions put that on hold.

“We also started classes in Coleraine and Castlerock as I really wanted to get more girls involved in the sport. It’s so good for keeping fit but also for keeping yourself safe and giving you confidence.

“The classes went so well we had to split them into two age groups and we even had former Commonwealth champion Lisa Bradley come down to coach.”

Amy Woodall

Amy also helped her father coach judo classes for people with visual impairments and for students at Sandelford School in Coleraine.

“They were just so inspirational. I loved meeting and coaching the kids especially and I learned so much about coaching from my dad too.”

And, as if all of that wasn’t enough to keep Amy busy, she is currently growing her hair and planning  fundraisers for the Little Princess Trust.

“Around two years ago I cut 12 inches of my hair off and raised just short of £1,000. My granny Fiona passed away from breast cancer when I was little so I want to continue to do this in memory of her.”

Amy Woodall

With her eyes set on a career in journalism and PR, Amy is hoping to begin university this year and has also completed a period of work experience with Alison Clarke of ACA models, the organiser of the Miss Northern Ireland competition.

“The heats of Miss NI this year were strange as they were conducted over Zoom but it was still lovely to ‘meet’ the other girls and have a conversation with them and the judges,” said Amy.

It is hoped that the finals will be able to be staged ‘in person’ in the Europa Hotel in Belfast on September 27.

Best of luck, Amy!

Amy Woodall