How Did Karsta Lowe Go from Being a Walk-On Athlete to an Olympic Medalist?

The Recap

Sam welcomes to the podcast decorated professional volleyball player, Karsta Lowe. Karsta won bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games, playing a key reserve role. Coming off the bench, she provided 41 points, highlighted by a 13-point performance versus Serbia in semifinal and 12 points against Italy in pool play. Outside of her Olympic experience, Karsta was a member of the team that took gold at the FIVB World Grand Prix where she was awarded MVP. She currently plays for a professional team in Busto, Italy.

In this episode, Sam and Karsta talk about Karsta’s journey as an athlete, from walk-on at UCLA to qualifying and medaling at the Olympics. They discuss her time playing abroad in Italy and overcoming challenges like the language barrier. Karsta shares some of her fondest memories from the Olympic village the emotional experience of representing her country in 2016. Finally, Karsta speaks to her confidence level and the importance she places on aligning her thoughts and her actions to ensure success.

Episode Highlights

00:59 – Introducing today’s guest, Karsta Lowe

01:49 – Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsor, Tumbl Trak and Right Rice

02:51 – Sam and Karsta share their first memories of each other

04:59 – Karsta’s journey as a young volleyball player

08:46 – Choosing between tennis and volleyball

09:28 – The recruitment process

10:35 – Obstacles and challenges Karsta had to overcome to prove herself at the collegiate level

13:22 – Karsta opens up about how her height was once an insecurity

14:14 – Karsta breaks down how collegiate volleyball works

15:40 – The transition from walk-on to starter

18:07 – The importance of having team chemistry

19:33 – Dismissing the myth that height is everything in volleyball

20:30 – Recalling her volleyball years at UCLA

22:23 – How Karsta went from walk-on to a scholarship athlete

23:37 – The moment Karsta realized she was incredibly talented at volleyball

26:56 – How Karsta became a professional volleyball player

27:53 – Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsors Tumbl Trak and Right Rice

28:56 – Playing abroad in Italy

31:40 – The language barrier

33:27 – Qualifying for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro

35:20 – Memories from the Olympic village

37:54 – The emotional experience of winning the bronze medal

38:51 – Karsta’s role on the 2016 Olympic USA Volleyball team

41:42 – Life post-Olympics

42:43 – The decision to retire and go back to school for architecture

45:03 – Future career plans

47:30 – Karsta’s goals for 2020

48:19 – What is Karsta’s daily motivation?

49:20 – How athletics and volleyball has boosted Karsta’s confidence

50:25 – When Karsta is her most confident self

51:49 – The number one life lesson that volleyball taught Karsta

53:40 – Karsta reveals one thing people can do to get 1% better each day

Tweetable Quotes

Links Mentioned

Karsta’s Facebook 

Karsta’s Instagram

Right RiceUse the code ‘20SAMGYMNAST’ for a 20% discount

Tumbl Trak: Gymnastic, Cheer, Dance, Martial Arts and Special Needs Equipment 

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