Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Representing here and abroad

Our athletes are now tapering for the National Competition at Jad Marinovic’s Kettlebell Athletica gym in Melbourne on December 1st. It is an appropriate time to pause and consider the journey they have made thusfar ; as I have mentioned before stepping up to the platform is one thing ; in reality this is just the icing on the cake of months of dedicated training.

We are not professional athletes.  It is often a struggle to maintain focus , schedule effective training sessions and manage various niggles which result from competitive preparation efforts. The slings and arrows of erratic job rostering , travel , personal and family illness , family commitments and the like are problems we all face – and indeed are our constant life companions. Whilst the bootcampers love to say “drink a cup of cement and harden up!” the whole process should be embraced but not unduly suffered.

Sport is after all a pursuit of health , albeit in a competitive guise. Participation in training and competing are what defines the educative process , and are as important as winning or setting records. For in our competitions there is no money . Just glory – and respective from peers. Privateer racing driver Alain de Cadenet made a career based on this philosophy and punched well beyond his weight against well prepared and highly financed teams.

Thus far , Australia has punched above its weight in international GS competitions. On a per capita basis and given our geographical remoteness we have achieved much in a relatively short time. Our international results are on record here (male only at this stage, female to follow very soon) . I would like to congratulate on behalf of all members this month’s efforts of David Tabain (32kg KB , 1st place with 81 jerks + 139 snatches) and his protégé Josh Dean  16kg KB , 1st place with 134 jerks and 196 snatches at the IKFF nationals in Detroit USA. These boys have made the sacrifices , put more than a fair bit of money and effort into reaching the venue and certainly brought home the bacon.

Time flies! Just over a year ago Edward Perrett and Roger Saheli were in Ventspils Latvia competing strongly in the IUKL competition . Both returned , further invigorated for the sport.

Collectively we can feel very proud of these GSAA journeymen. They certainly understand the bigger picture as far as establishing GS an as official sport in our country.  Hopefully you will all stick to the task and dare to dream as David and Josh have done. Whether you are glued to a desk all day , spend your week cajoling clients in a gym,  dig holes in the road for a crust or run around after small children – all roads lead to Rome. The common pathway is focus and dedication.

To those athletes who through unforeseen social circumstance or injury have driven off their road to the competition, know that what got you on that road in the first place will pull you out of the ditch! We look forward to your continuing contributions in 2013 and beyond.

To those who are about to compete , stay focussed and don’t be tempted to overtrain now. The work has been done and unlike exams , cramming will not achieve very much. My best advice is to take stock of all niggles , get some massage work and maximise mobility. Stay relaxed as possible , eat well and get plenty of sleep. Your rewards await! Medals for 1st , 2nd, 3rd place but most importantly , the reward of strutting your stuff in company of colleagues! 

Paul Tucker

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