Catching up with women's bobsled alumni Katie Eberling
Photo: Katie Eberling on her wedding day
Q: How did you get into the sport of bobsled?
A: I joined the sport in 2011 and was a part of the Elana Meyer’s recruiting class. I played volleyball at Western Michigan University and was just finishing up my student teaching internship when I received a message from Elana inviting me to try out for bobsled. After graduation, I felt drawn to continue competing and decided I would always wonder what would have happened if I gave it a shot. So, I headed to Lake Placid for my first combine.
Q: Are there any specific memories that stand out for you from your time as a bobsledder?
A: There are many moments that stand out to me. I would say the 2013 World Championships in St Moritz where Elana and I took home silver. St Moritz is a very special place that embodies the best of bobsled, and winning silver by a few hundredths over the Germans is a memory that will stay with me. Steve Holcomb is also at the center of many of my favorite memories. He was truly one of a kind, both as an athlete and person.
Q: How would you describe bobsled to someone who doesn’t know about the sport?
A: The start is such an incredible rush, it can be below freezing temperatures and yet you feel warm with a focused energy. The way down is way more aggressive than you could ever imagine or anticipate.
Q:Do you stay in touch with many of your former teammates?
A: I keep in touch with a few teammates and continue to track sliding results on social media. Kristi Koplin remains one of my closest friends – she is a gem and her friendship is one of the greatest gifts I have taken away from the sport. I also stay connected to our athlete bible study group led by Pastor Ryan.
Q: What advice would you give to a new athlete entering the sport of bobsled?
A: While competing, continue to invest in your personal relationships, network, and mental and physical health. Competing at the highest level is a great honor, but it can quickly consume your identity. The sport will end, and it is so important to think about your future self too.
Q: What have you been doing since retiring from the sport?
A: Professionally, bobsled has inspired me to continue to explore unconventional opportunities. With my elementary teaching degree, I have worked as a Wish Coordinator at Make A Wish Foundation, and most recently, as a Program Manager at LinkedIn.
Personally, I married my husband, Garrett, last fall in our backyard and we are expecting a baby boy this August. We met through mutual friends before I joined the sport, I am so grateful our paths reconnected and for all the support he has given me as I navigated life outside of sport.