Following in the footsteps of his father, who came to play with the Spanish futsal team, he began to practice this sport from an early age. He arrived at UMA Antequera last season, 21/22. In just over a year at the club he has won a Copa del Rey, been promoted to the first division, competed in the Spanish Super Cup and is fighting to enter the playoffs this season. However, he has not put aside his studies and after finishing a degree and a master’s degree he is studying for a degree in Physiotherapy. Quique Hernando is proof that you can combine studies and professional sports.
At what age did you start in futsal? Why this sport and not another?
I have been playing futsal since I was 4 years old. I start with that age because it was what extracurriculars offered at that time and I had a great time playing with my friends. On the other hand, I have always had the example of my father as a professional player and the way forward.
At what point did you realize that you could be a professional?
It is not a specific moment, you are working, you are improving day by day. You start seeing people your own age and you realize that you are doing well, that you are better than them. And you see national clubs taking notice of you.
What has been the hardest moment of your sports career?
Last season I suffered a torn cruciate ligament. I’ve been off the slopes for seven months. This has been the most difficult stage of my career.
What does your family think about taking professional sports and college at the same time? Do they support you?
Yes, my parents have always encouraged me to study and it was never a condition that I practice sports like soccer or swimming. I had to combine both things and today the same. They encourage me to continue studying and training, they also encourage me to continue with futsal, which is what feeds me.
He has the recognition of a high-level athlete. How does this benefit you in your studies?
They give us privileges when it comes to being able to take exams on dates other than those stipulated. In case we can’t do them by schedule. They also give us assistance facilities, we can miss if it coincides with training. And we can attend the UMA gym at the time we want.
How is your daily routine? How do you combine sports and studies?
In the morning I get up, have breakfast, go to the university, give the usual classes and if I get a gap I go to the gym. In the afternoon before training I study or do some homework and then I dedicate the whole afternoon to sports.
What have you had to give up to have to combine studies with futsal?
I have had to leave my city, I am from Toledo and I have come to Malaga. You leave family and friends behind. When I was younger I have given up birthdays, stopped going out on Fridays or not going to meals with friends. Those kinds of things are the most common.
Why are you studying Physiotherapy? Do you plan to dedicate yourself to it when you finish professional sports?
I already did another degree before, in Sports Physical Activity Sciences. Last year I finished the Master of Education. I have always liked sports and at the time I chose another career. The injury gave me the impulse to want to know more about the subject and start the race. Right now I have not decided what I will do in the future regarding my careers.
You joined the team last year and since then they have only had a lot of success. Did you expect everything to go so well?
No the truth is no. When I signed I knew they were one of the strongest teams in the second division and we were able to get promoted. In addition, we inexplicably managed to win the Copa del Rey and this year we qualified for the League Cup.
Who is your benchmark in futsal?
My reference has always been my father. For everything it means, of course, for the father figure, but also for everything he was in futsal. International with the national team, champion of almost everything. I think that in this sense we should not look further and stay with the house that sometimes is not valued so much.
How do you see the current panorama of futsal in Spain?
It is a sport that is continually growing, which has its drawbacks and its disputes in positions that should not be mentioned. It is a sport that is very beautiful, that we must take care of those of us who are inside and those who are outside. I hope that he continues to grow and that he manages to be an Olympian so that everyone can enjoy it.