Graduate wins national awards bringing inspiration to social media
University of Portsmouth graduate and social media influencer, Vanessa Ruck, has won two national awards for her YouTube and creative online content.
Also known as The Girl On A Bike, Vanessa, a 35-year old rising star in the motorcycle world, won the awards for Best Social Media Channel and Most inspirational Rider at the Motorbike TV Peoples awards. Motorbike TV is the Top Gear of motorcycles and its first annual Motorbike TV Peoples Awards have been a huge success with over 103,000 votes cast across 24 categories.
Vanessa’s story is one of true resilience and utter determination. After being hit by a car while cycling in 2014, Vanessa’s world was turned upside down, resulting in seven surgeries and a roller-coaster of mental and physical recovery spanning 7 years. Through her recovery she discovered motorcycles, becoming known as “The Girl On A Bike”.
People can relate to my story because everyone goes through bad times. We all have battles, some less visible than others but with a positive outlook, determination and a smile these battles can be a little easier. Hopefully I am inspiring others to show that if I can bounce back and keep going after seven surgeries, others can get through their hard times.
As a motorcycle rider and racer, Vanessa speaks passionately and authentically about the challenges of recovery from a life changing accident and making the most of every day despite chronic ongoing pain. In the world of perfectly presented lives on social media, Vanessa is an honest and raw personality. It’s a refreshingly real account to follow. Instead of just focusing on the wins and the highs, ‘the perfect life’, she shares it all – the crashes, the days her body just hurts, the battles and struggles.
Vanessa said: “Motorcycles, something I started post-accident, have become my love and passion. If you’d asked me seven years ago whether I would be racing off-road motorcycles and delivering motivational speaking, I’d have probably choked on my drink! But life takes us on some amazing journeys.
“People can relate to my story because everyone goes through bad times. We all have battles, some less visible than others but with a positive outlook, determination and a smile these battles can be a little easier. Hopefully I am inspiring others to show that if I can bounce back and keep going after seven surgeries, others can get through their hard times.”
Vanessa spends her time sharing all elements of life, largely surrounding motorcycles and also does charity work delivering free workshops to UK youth. Utilising her recovery to engage young minds she talks about resilience, goal setting and coping with life’s pressures.
Also known as The Girl On A Bike, Vanessa is a rising star in the motorcycle world.
Vanessa attended the University of Portsmouth to study International Business Studies in 2005, graduating in 2009. Diving straight into industry, after a 10-year marketing career she transferred her detailed understanding of brand positioning, storytelling and marketing, to build her own online brand as ‘The Girl On A Bike.’ With nearly quarter of a million followers, Vanessa is on a mission to show that nothing is impossible if you work hard enough, even as a slightly reconstructed person following the accident.
Given the Motorcycle TV peoples awards got a record 100,000 votes it’s clear to say Vanessa is an inspiration to women and men alike. She said: “I’m on a mission to prove to myself that I still can, and I hope that continues to encourage others to get up and grab life by the horns. We only have one life so let’s make the most of it, turn adversity into an opportunity to grow and make the most if it.”
You can follow Vanessa across her socials:
Visit Vanessa's website | Subscribe to Vanessa's YouTube channel | Follow Vanessa on Instagram | Connect with Vanessa on Facebook