Boost your healthy with Queenslandhers Ali, Tazmin and Julia

We asked our Queenslandher State of Origin superstars your
health, wellbeing and footy questions.

Ali Brigginshaw Leadher

Playing against the boys as a young girl was a challenge that Ali thrived on. Being constantly told that league wasn’t for girls makes her all the more proud to be where she is today; captaining the State of Origin team and leading the way for women in rugby league.

Tazmin Gray Challengher

Tazmin was no stranger to the rough and tumble of footy having grown up playing alongside her brothers, but because girls weren’t allowed to play beyond primary school, Tazmin’s had to challenge the perceptions, and underestimations of others to wear the jersey today.

Julia Robinson Fighther

Having dreamed of a career in sport but being told it’s not for girls, Julia wasn’t sure it would ever be possible. Filling a spot on the Defence Force rugby league team propelled her dream into reality. It hasn’t been easy, but Julia continues to fight to be able to play the sport she loves.

The Queenslandher Spirit

The Queensland State of Origin women’s players have all made sacrifices to play the game they love. They are focussed – on their sport, their health, the role they have as ambassadors for the next generation of players, and they’re experts in maintaining their own health and wellbeing.

From breathing in fresh air on a run to finding rhythm in a steady routine, these women work hard to make their own healthy happen. They’re the ultimate Queenslandhers, and here they share their stories.

Question: How have you found strength to rise above various challenges associated with the sport?

Mateship. Julia
I don’t think I find it a challenge. I find it more as just a part of who we are as women, that’s just what we have to do. It’s more sacrificing so that we can continue to play the game and obviously make it excel. It’s up to us as players to do that. Tazmin
Just being the only girl amongst all the boys. As a young girl I think that taught me resilience and to carry that with me throughout my career. Ali

Tips to face the challenges in your life:

  • Consider the bigger picture
  • Break up challenges into smaller, manageable goals to work towards
  • Identify your strengths and play to them 
  • Know when to ask for help 
  • Celebrate when you achieve your goals 

Question: Do you have any game-day rituals?

No I don’t have any game day rituals anymore. I just like to chill out, be with my family and just be present with myself and what’s about to take place. Tazmin
I make sure I have my overnight oats and protein powder. That’s where the muscles come from. Julia

Question: Rugby league’s such a rough and physical sport. Are you constantly afraid of injury?

No you never think of injury when you’re playing. That’s just something that comes with the game and obviously a part of life so whatever happens, happens out on the field. If you get injured you get injured. Tazmin
No. I never worry about injury. If you go out there and that happens then it’s within the game. I never curse anyone if I’m in the tackle and I do get injured, it’s a part of rugby league and you never go out there to think you’re going to get hurt. Ali
Learn more about being physicaly active, at any age

Question: What music pumps you up before a game?

I’m pretty easy with music now, I used to love slow jams. I had a play list and it was called the slowest of slow jams and that’s probably the type of music I used to like to listen to. But now I’m pretty happy just listening to anything and just feeding off the vibes that are in the change room and whatever the girls are feeling at the time. Tazmin
I actually just take in everyone’s energy. So whatever they’re listening to or dancing to I kind of watch what my players are doing. Ali
Learn more about the power of music

Question: What are some of your favourite ways to relax?

The best way for me is writing. I feel like I’m out of my head when I’m putting pen to paper and I’m visualising what’s going on within my brain. So for me, it’s a way of mediation. I’m able to get out of my head and see things for what they really are, be present with those emotions and be able to release them in a way. Tazmin
Going for walks with my dogs. Julia

Easy tips to help to you relax: 

  • Exercise to any capacity – a yoga class, walk around the block, dancing etc. 
  • Take time out to find or practice a hobby you’re passionate about
  • Try meditation or mindfulness activities like journaling
  • Separate yourself from stresses in your life with friends, family, and other distractions

Question: What’s your proudest career moment?

Winning three premierships for the Broncos. Julia
One would be wining Origin. I’ve been on the Origin scene since 2016 and I’ve been on the back-end of plenty of losses so to be able to win last year for me was a massive highlight. I’ve been able to play for my country and win a game there and to be able do that on the highest level. But for me it was always to win an Origin and to be able to do that last year would probably be one of my biggest highlights. Tazmin
There are so many, but winning a World Cup in 2013 was probably one of the biggest moments. To wear the green and gold is something that’s always an honour for anyone. And playing in the first ever NRLW women’s inaugural premiership, and to win that one, holds a special place in my heart. Ali

Question: How do you make sure you get a good night’s sleep?

Obviously as a mum sleep can vary but we like to get to bed around 9.30pm and hopefully to be asleep by 10.30. Tazmin
Probably just putting my phone down before I go to sleep. I always go and plug it in to charge half an hour or hour before I actually go to sleep, it’s the best way to get a good night’s rest. Ali
Going to bed early. Julia
Learn more about good sleep habits

Question: How do you find the motivation to exercise when you really don’t feel like it?

Always wanting to try and better myself. Julia
I’m lucky to have a support system that only pushes me to be my best. In order to be my best I have to do what others aren’t doing, So for me it’s pretty easy to motivate myself. Tazmin
I think it’s just always good for your mind. And to keep a healthy mind is to always exercise and make sure that you’re not letting your stress overtake your life. So exercise is the way that I get rid of stress and if it’s as simple as a walk or a run I find it’s the best way to stay fit and healthy. Ali
Tips to keep the motivation going

Question: What’s your go-to lunchbox healthy snack for you and your family?

Definitely a banana sandwich. Ali
Fruit, apples, bananas, nuts, carrot sticks, hummus. Julia
Learn more about healthy snack habits

Question: How much water do you drink a day?

I try and stay hydrated. I try and have 2 or 3 bottles a day. Ali
More than 2 litres. Julia

Why water is the better choice:

  • A natural way to rehydrate
  • No added sugars, flavours, or acids that can impact dental and overall health 
  • Easily accessible and a cheaper alternative 
  • Drinking tap water with fluoride can strengthen teeth and bones

The Queenslandher Chant

Thank you to all the Queenslandhers who shared their voices. We had many loud and proud chant videos submitted as part of the chant competition, and our winner, Ciara, was especially passionate! On 25 June 2021, Queensland won the State of Origin 8-6. Queenslandher rung out through the stadium.

The Queenslandher spirit was well and truly in the air on game day, with signs, shirts, and the chant filling up the stadium. With palpable excitement and enthusiasm, fans cheered on the girls with the new twist on the famous chant. It was a memorable night for the team and fans alike with the maroons going on to an impressive win against the blues.

When you go out onto the field with all of the girls, everyone’s emotions are heightened. I guess because we know the sacrifices we have made to get to this point.

 – Julia Robinson

The Queensland State of Origin women’s players have all made sacrifices to play the game they love. They are focussed – on their sport, their health, the role they have as ambassadors for the next generation of players, and they’re experts in maintaining their own health and wellbeing. From breathing in fresh air on a run to finding rhythm in a steady routine, these women work hard to make their own healthy happen. They’re the ultimate Queenslandhers, and here they share their stories.

Join the #Queenslandher conversation on the social feeds. Show us what makes you a Queenslandher and share your tips for better wellbeing.

Last updated 19 August 2021