Posted by RLPA
Career Development: Jayden Brailey
The Career Development Q&A is an RLPA content series that promotes career development opportunities for players and the importance of planning for life after footy.
Each article will feature an NRL player who has engaged in meaningful development opportunities away from the field, while also providing an insight for other players and the industry about their journey.
The content series also highlights academic achievements from within the playing group, many of which have utilised the support available through the NRL-RLPA Wellbeing and Education program.
Part 16 of the Career Development Q&A features Newcastle Knights hooker Jayden Brailey.
Q1 What off field development are you completing or have completed?
I am currently studying a Bachelor of Exercise Sport Science at ACU Strathfield.
Q2 Why did you choose this field?
I have always been interested in the field of health and exercise and the sort of lifestyle that comes from the jobs beyond this degree match up with what I want to do post football.
Q3 Did you always have this career path in mind?
Yeah I’ve always had this career path in mind and have also had interest in running my own business one day and expanding my learning in that field.
Q4 Have you utilised any support available to players through the NRL-RLPA Wellbeing and Education program?
Yes and have worked closely with my club’s wellbeing officer in getting my study organised this year so I could complete it while being out injured for most of the season.
Q5 What plans or goals do you have for post-retirement?
Post-retirement I’d love to fall into a strength and conditioning role or be running my own business.
Q6 If you could give yourself one piece of career advice back in your rookie year what would it be?
Focus on your footy, but keep studying in some way too. It will give you something to do away from the game and will keep you educated in ways that will translate into your football life.
Q7 How important is it for players and the industry to prioritise career development opportunities?
It’s very important, I’ve found that studying in my time away from training has helped me take my mind off footy and learn a lot of new things that has helped me be a better professional athlete.
Q8 How have the skills you have developed through playing NRL helped with your educational development?
Being a sport science degree, there has been a lot of crossovers between the degree and my footy schedule. Every day at training I’m exposed to certain things that I learn about at Uni and it often helps when I go back to my study and have to do activities on it.
Q9 How important is having the support of your coach and football staff when pursuing education options?
I’m pretty lucky that the staff at the Knights are very supportive of the study I’m doing away from footy, and have helped out with my training schedule at times to suit what’s needed at the University.
Q10 Was there a time you felt like giving up on your studies and if so, what helped you keep going?
Yeah I’ve thought about it multiple times, but I’m so close to finishing and I know that I’ve put in a lot of hard work to be where I am today. I’ll finish my degree this year and that is what’s driving me to keep working hard.