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Olympics 1 year out – a change in perspective

I’m not sure if everyone managed to catch any of the Olympic 1 year out festivities yesterday. I saw this video of Tom Daley¬†taking his first dive at the aquatics centre. The venue looks awesome and the camera positions look like they’ll bring some great footage to those who’ll be watching at home or on big screens around the country. I’m not sure how many they let in to watch the first dive, a couple of hundred maybe, but the noise and the atmosphere in the building sounded great. Seeing Tom Daley’s reaction to it was also intriguing.

There has, somewhat obviously, been a lot of work put in by the athletes in preparation for the Olympics and I know there is a psychology program in place around coping with the expectations of the home crowd during the games. There has been a lot of talk about those expectations which I find annoying. I think it’s a very negative way to portray it. It suggests that people are going to be let down by the athlete’s actions.

Every single British person watching, either in the crowd or on TV, will be supporting every British athlete, willing them on in their event (I will at least anyway), which is a huge positive. More focus should be placed on managing distractions, maintaining concentration and making use of the supporter’s atmosphere¬†rather than coping with public expectations. Hopefully Tom Daley realised this yesterday and the talk of expectations hasn’t made him scared of his home town support.

I know that when funding and achieving value for money is discussed, then there is an expectation associated with that. It would be remiss of me not to acknowledge it. But it’s been done. The decisions have been made and everyone knows how much they have and what they want to achieve. We can worry about all that after the event now and I’m sure many column inches will be devoted to it then. For now let’s just get behind them.

 

Neil Welch

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