Empowering Human Performance | Athletigen Blog

Heather Hamilton: Featured Athlete

Posted by Nathan Navidzadeh on Tue, May 05, 2015

This month we had the chance to connect with professional pole vaulter Heather Hamilton on how she incorporates Athletigen into her life. Learn how she interprets her genetic profile to make adjustments to her training and diet as she pursues the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro:

Discovering Her Genetic Profile

When Heather first reviewed her Genetic Performance Scores, she was surprised to see that some of the numbers were lower than she expected, particularly in the Power category. However, Heather explored the details in her dashboard to better understand how her genetics influence her performance, and was inspired by what she discovered.

Athletigen’s “My scores (BETA)” section will be increasingly more accurate as research advances and shouldn’t be used to determine your athletic potential. Currently it serves as a great interface to learn more about how certain genes influence different performance traits.


Comparing the Athletigen profiles of pole vaulters reveals very different genetic strengths between athletes, which speaks to the highly technical nature of pole vaulting. For example, Heather’s genetic predisposition towards strong joints and ligaments combined with those affecting explosive jump performance are indicative of her complex athletic ability.

Changes Made To Enhance Her Performance

Heather explained that her recovery from strength training always seemed to be slower than her peers, but she felt hesitant to act on it. Knowing now that her genes may not be the best for quick muscle recovery, she explains: “I’m way more perceptive to my body’s needs,” adding “I’ll take that extra day to recover and improve the quality of my training.”

In addition, Heather’s Athletigen profile highlighted her favorable response to Vitamin D and Omega-3 supplementation. Heather explained that she’s always noticed a strong boost in energy and improved health when taking these supplements, and that seeing it reflected in her genetics gives her confidence in continuing her supplementing routine.


Quick Facts about Heather:

Heather’s game day rituals: Staying Zen listening to tunes by Milky Chance helps her stay focused - and a cup of coffee before the event!

Favorite cheat food: Lindt dark chocolate with sea salt (although she said she could give us a bigger list if we wanted).

Craziest experience: European street vault competitions. Crowds of fans are gathered to watch pole vaulters compete in the middle of town.

What Heather loves the most about Athletigen is how this wealth of genetic information is made available to her in a way that she can apply to her life. Learn more about Heather here and support her in pursuing the 2016 Olympics.

Topics: athletigen, sports genetics, Editorial, featured athlete, heather hamilton

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