With a captaincy of the world’s #1 women’s volleyball team under her belt - as well as two Olympic medals and a clear dedication to helping others - Christa Dietzen is a team player in every sense of the word.
Long Tall Sally empowers women everywhere to celebrate their authentic self and I’m honoured to represent the brand as Global Ambassador. With LTS, I am proud to stand #TallerAndStronger and celebrate the tall, strong bodies women have been given to impact the world.
When did you know that you wanted to pursue a career in volleyball?
"I began playing volleyball aged 13 and, in my Junior Year of High School, was given the opportunity to compete with the USA Junior National Volleyball team at an international competition. It was then that I realised I could potentially pursue my dream of competing in an Olympic Games."
Tell us three things make an amazing female athlete.
"Perseverance: there are always challenges being an athlete. Meaning: to give motivation and a clear “why” behind what you are pursuing. And, teammates: who push you to be the best version of yourself."
What are your goals for the future?
"To be a mom and to positively impact the next generation of female athletes."
What is your weekly fitness routine like?
"Three times a week, I follow a 45-minute weightlifting programme. I mountain bike twice a week (typically for five to ten miles), swim 500 yards three times and practice yoga at least once."
If I could tell tall girls everywhere one thing, it would be that the blessings of being tall far outweigh the perceived negatives.
Can you tell us about your work with Play Like A Girl?
"Play Like A Girl really spoke to me when I read their mission statement; growing up, boys in sports would talk down each other by saying, ‘You play like a girl’. Now, the phrase ‘Play like a girl’ has taken on another meaning because of today’s strong, courageous and confident sportswomen. It’s such a wonderful organisation to be a part of."
“Sports have had such a huge role in my life, not only because of the experiences, but the lifelong lessons of perseverance, conflict resolution and teamwork. I want to encourage the next generation of female athletes to promote the value of women’s sports."
Are you confident with your height?
"I am now but as a child, I was uncomfortable. Fourth grade was a turning point for me; I began playing organised basketball with girls ‘like me’ who were taller and liked sports. I gained confidence gradually and felt like myself when competing. I stood up straight, not hiding my height."
"Now I see being tall as a strength. Sure, for my career as a volleyball player, but also because it’s given me the opportunity to have confidence in being different."
What were some of the pros and cons growing up as a tall girl?
"Pros: rather than standing around and talking about the boys in fourth grade, I played flag football with them. They were so great in including me and I’ll never forget how they boosted my confidence. I was so much taller than most of them, so it allowed me to be the ultimate wide receiver."
"Cons: prom dates and dating in general. Thank goodness there was a nice tall gentleman in my high school class. I went to every dance with him. I was often too busy with volleyball to date, but it did take me a while to feel fully comfortable with my height."
Any advice for your teenage self?
"It’s ok to be different and it’s ok to feel like you don’t fit in. You just need to talk about it, don’t hold it in."
Describe your style in three words.
"Clean, sporty, and put-together"
When are you at your happiest?
To relax, you…?
"Garden, clean (yes, I’m type A), and cook."
What are you currently reading?
"Love Does, by Bob Goff and State Of Emergency by Marc Cameron - I love thrillers!"
About Christa Dietzen
Christa Dietzen is the current Secretary and member of the board of the Give It Back Foundation, a non-profit formed by members of the USA WNT that aims to inspire and empower the next generation of volleyball players while partnering with local charities. Christa is also on leadership with Play Like A Girl! and is passionate about Joubert Syndrome Foundation, We Serve First, and Classroom Champions.