Meet Stella Palmer
Stella (16) started playing bowls regularly in 2018 after seeing her parents play bowls in several clubs around Queensland. “I decided that I really wanted to have a go, because it looked like a lot of fun and the idea of it being different appealed to me,” Stella said.
Stella plays bowls for 15-20 hours per week and this includes training on three or four days. Sometimes she’s had to travel up to 600kms one way to play bowls. Stella’s most memorable bowls moment has been getting selected for the Queensland Junior side in 2021. She’s most proud of winning her club championship Ladies Pairs, B Grade Open Singles, Ladies District Pairs and being a runner-up in the Junior State Singles.
Traveling with her parents to different carnivals has always been one of Stella’s highlights and she says she really enjoys just playing bowls. Her goals are to continue playing for Queensland and in time, Australia.
“I would really like to play in the Commonwealth games,” she said. “I don’t have any specific mentors; however, I am fortunate to have the support of many senior players and especially my parents. I look up to my parents who have always been there to coach and support me.”
“ I also have the benefit of having two other State players in our regional Roma club who are always willing to give me guidance.”
Stella says that being involved in higher performance bowls has meant she has to reorganise her approach to school work and commitments outside of bowls. Training in the afternoons during a school week means less time with friends and having to do school work at a later time. “I find that living in regional Queensland means I don’t have regular opportunities to play with juniors of my age, but I make up for this by playing in as many carnivals as I can. “
“I’d encourage young people to have a go because you’ll enjoy the competitiveness and just having fun. It is a sport that can teach a lot about life skills such as self-discipline, patience and goal setting. It’s a lot more fun than expected, and surprise, surprise it’s actually played by young and old.” Stella would really like it if bowls was made a school based subject so juniors come to love it as much as she does. “I would like to say to fellow readers to continue to encourage junior players within your club, I have really enjoyed the support offered to me by club bowlers and I’m very appreciative of my opportunity to represent Queensland.”