Fitness Friday – Olympic training regimes

What does it take to be an Olympian?

Is it genetics, hard work, diet, or a mixture of all three?

It seems that it is a mixture of all three and maybe a sprinkling of luck (sorry to say that to all the hard working Olympians out there but, getting discovered, having the right coaches at the right time etc has a bit to do with luck but that is really a small percentage).

The One Player Down founders grew up in different countries and were exposed to different sports.  Nick was in the US and was immediately exposed to sport at a very young age and saw how it is treated like a job extremely quickly.  For instance, 6 year olds swimming 2 hours a day.  Matthias was exposed to more recreational sports, where it was about family activity and fun, hiking, skiing, football etc.

Does this affect the long term enjoyment, both say no and both are about as competitive as each other, though Nick might be a little louder.

Do these fundamental different attitudes change the success of the people towards sport?  Maybe, but not at the Winter Olympics.  As it stands Austria has 10 medals and the US 25, when you take in the population difference, Austria is miles ahead.

Saying that to become an Olympian it takes a dedication that separated the athletic from the athletes.

Here are a couple of example training regimes from Olympians:

Katie Uhlaender, Skeleton

Kristin Armstrong, Cyclist

Shawn Johnson, Gymnast

Once you feel that you can keep up with a training schedule like these then you might be ready for the 10 Steps to Become an Olympic Athlete

The most difficult part of training for an elite sport where it is just you against the clock is, the hours of training alone.  There is a great psychological strain put on an athlete to just compete against themselves, a clock and their own limitations/technique.

As it is well known, the Jamaican sprinters train together.   “John Donne said that, “No man is an Island” and socialization is a basic human need that having a training partner (or partners) would satisfy.”   “Training partners are not only useful for satisfying social needs, they can be vital in helping motivate you to train!” Catherine Robertson, writer from The Sport In Mind, says in Psychological effects of Training Partners a great article about what a training partner can bring you.

This is where even with individually focused sports, One Player Down can help an athlete gain advantages by finding a like minded training partner to help them strive and improve.   We are after all The Sports Socializing Network.

Sources:

What It Takes to Be an Olympic Athlete – Fitness magazine
10 Steps to Become an Olympic Athlete

Psychological effects of Training Partners – The Sport In Mind

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