Series Created by Sarah Wolfer – Seattle Majestics Player
The Seattle Majestics Football team launched a series on March 8th to highlight the many impressive women who make up the team. The Seattle Majestics players and coaches come from all walks of life with varying backgrounds and experiences who are unified by one common goal – Winning the IX Cup in Denver, Colorado this summer.
This #FootballFriday we would like to appreciate a stand-out middle linebacker and incredible woman and athlete – April Arnold. As a four-year player with the Majestics, April brings a tremendous amount of football experience and a work-ethic that is matched by very few athletes. April also walks the talk when it comes to women supporting women and values the lessons she’s learned over her years playing this incredible sport. She has been able to make her dreams come true through the daily grind of working hard and with consistency to become her best self. April has one of the kindest souls you will ever meet and she consistently uplifts and empowers her teammates to work toward the common goal of winning the National Championship. In her free time, April enjoys rock-climbing, snowboarding, hiking, and playing the guitar. She is a special human being and athlete and is an unstoppable force to be reckoned with on AND off the football field.
Tell us about yourself and your journey to become a tackle football player with the Seattle Majestics. How did you get started playing football? Why the Seattle Majestics and the WNFC?
I’m April Arnold, starting middle linebacker for the Majestics. This is my fourth year playing football since I was recruited by a former player. Honestly after watching highlights of the team, my first thought was, “there is no way I could keep up with them. They are stronger, faster, bigger and truly gifted athletes. What would I add to a team that is so incredibly talented?”
However I eventually decided, with a lot of convincing from my friends to take the chance, to join the amazing women who make up the Majestics.
I remember the first time I stepped out on the field, I knew right then and there that this was where I belong. All the ladies welcomed me with open arms and were so incredibly supportive and positive.
So, why the Seattle Majestics?
Because they are my home and my family.
I would never go to battle with any other women.
I am who I am because of them.
I was incredibly nervous about the WNFC as I thought that it was too good to be true. However I have now seen that we all have the same vision around growing the sport. I also wanted the chance to compete against true competitors and the WNFC has been able to provide amazing football games that showcase talent on all sides.
Football has truly had such an impact on my life. It has made me believe in myself again and know that I’m capable of so much more. It has given me the confidence and the strength to accomplish anything that comes my way. It has shown me that dreams really do come true when you put in the work.
It also has given me a second family.
These ladies are my sisters and no matter what I’m going through, they are there to help pick me up. They are truly amazing people.
As part of the Women’s National Football Conference, the Seattle Majestics are now sponsored by Adidas through the “She Breaks Barriers” campaign. What do you feel are the biggest barriers facing women in sports today?
People think women are too soft to be playing a “man’s sport.” They don’t acknowledge the women under the pads and helmet as true athletes. If we aren’t playing in bikinis, they don’t typically pay attention.
What do you see as your role in changing that?
My role in changing that is playing at a higher level and proving to all the little girls out there that you don’t need to follow the stereotypical path for women. I want to be great and in order to reach that level, you have to put in the work. One of my favorite quotes is “hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” There is always a reward for the grind that you put in day and night.
Based on your own experience, what advice would you give girls growing up today?
My advice is that it doesn’t matter what your size is as everything depends on how big your heart is.
My best tackles in my football career have been against women that are double my size.
Nothing should stop you no matter how terrifying it can be.
Football has made me believe in myself and that I’m capable of anything.
And you are too.
Who is your (s)hero and how did/ does (s)he inspire you?
That would be the one and only Marshawn Lynch! In my eyes he is the best running back in the league. I just love watching him run. He isn’t the fastest but he punishes players that try to tackle him. He refuses to go down, and he fights for every yard. Not only is he a great power runner but he can be very elusive. Some of his juking is insane. You have to watch him against Ray Lewis, the best ankle breaker ever!
If you want to see April and the Seattle Majestics in action as they enter the playoffs, you’re in luck! The WNFC recently joined forces with USCREEN and announced “WNFCTV.” Check out more information and watch the games live HERE