1. Greatest motivation
My biggest motivator is my mum. From watching her play sport all I wanted to do was be like her. She encourages me to be the best person I can be in every area of my life. She is without a doubt my biggest supporter!
2. Jessica's favourite sport
I spent my entire childhood as a netballer and basketballer until I lost too much of my sight to play anymore. Now as I represent Australia in alpine skiing and athletics I feel like I lead a double life. I could not even contemplate what sport i would choose if I could only do one, I love skiing and athletics for different reasons and they annoy me for different reasons so I really do think I just get the best of both worlds!
3. On competing in both the winter and summer Paralympic Games
It means the world to me to compete in both Games. There are only 4 other athletes competing here in London who also competed at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Paralympics - and I am one of them! The thought of being the first Australian to medal at a summer and winter Paralympics really blows my mind and if I achieve that here in London it will be a very overwhelming experience.
4. Jessica's problem knee
It's the best it's been since it collapsed on me in training mid June and the afternoon of the Opening Ceremony I had a cortisone in it which should remove the muscle inhibition which has been causing all the problems! I've been using crutches, wearing constant compression and icing along with physio and massage to help remove the swelling. It has been a lot of hard work to get my knee in this shape but I am excited for my operation when I get home so that it's like brand new for my return to the ski racing world.
5. Why sport is so important to Jessica
Ever since I can remember I have always loved sport. Whether it be social or Paralympic level, I love pushing my limits and challenging myself. Here in London at the Paralympics it really opens your eyes to see how sport can help people with disabilities become equal.
6. Jessica Gallagher's favourite pre-competition meal
It really depends on what time of day my competition is. For breakfast I LOVE muesli or granola with some milk, yoghurt and fresh fruit mixed in. I've a slight fig obsession at the moment so will usually pop in some dried figs as well! For my Long Jump final on Sept 7 it's in the evening so I will have a larger hot lunch then a meat and salad sandwich with some more yoghurt and fruit late afternoon. I don't like jumping on a heavy stomach so will usually take along lots of snacks like protein bars, bananas to snack on if I get hungry.
7. Four words that best describe Jessica
In the sporting arena I'm very motivated and driven but off the field and I'm very easy going and friendly.
8. Why I became an osteopath
Growing up i always wanted to be involved in sports medicine. I saw an Osteopath as a teenager and loved the approach to treatment. In my work as an osteopath I mainly treat athletes and I love that I get to be a part of their journey to achieving their goals and dreams. So many people have helped me over my journey and I love that I get to be on the other side of that fence. It's very rewarding.
9. How Australians can better support their Paralympians
The Paralympics have come a long way over the last decade but we still have a long way to go in terms of recognition. I really think the key is education. I may be an athlete with a disability but I am a professional athlete first and foremost and someone who also happens to have a vision impairment. London2012 has already opened the world's eyes to the Paralympic movement and hopefully encourage more discussion and support for our talented Paralympians.
10. Her advice for aspiring athletes
Have fun and soak up every moment of the journey. If it was easy everyone would do it. There are many highs and lows but it always comes back to this: I love what I do and that makes it easy to get through the hard times. It also makes the great times moments you will treasure for the rest of your life.Read more at Jessica Gallagher or tweet Jessica Gallagher your support!