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Australia and New Zealand at Olympics. (Read 1022 times)

    As you may be aware, Australia is not doing well at this Olympics, particularly in swimming, and have only one gold medal.

    The expectation before the games began was that they might finish 5th in the medal standings- but right now they are 19th.

     

    New Zealand, on the other hand, have 3 golds, though all for swimming. This situation is causing great consternation among Australians who justifiably take great pride in the sporting achievements of their population of 22 million or so. Now the  4 million Kiwis, who also achieve wonders, particularly in rugby and sailing, have more golds.

     

    I heard a very amusing interview on the BBC this morning during which a Kiwi promised his nation would help the Aussies learn to "slide across the surface of the water faster than people from other nations". All in good humour, of course- but if for some reason Sally Pearson does not come through there will be some serious teeth gnashing going on in Oz!

    PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                        10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

     

      Sally Pearson is gonna kick down the door for the Gold.  As much as I like and want to see Lolo win I think everyone else is running for Silver and Bronze.

        According to CBC, Aus has 22 medals (2/12/8) which puts them in 8th overall. 

         

        http://www.cbc.ca/olympics/ Wink

        "Don't feel like running today...suck it up and run ...you're an athlete." (John Stanton, founder & owner of The Running Room)

         

        Three half marathons later, I got a number. Half Fanatic #9292. :)

          I know I'm very naive when it comes to the swimming world.  It wasnt' very popular where I grew up, and is only marginally popular where I live now. There must be some densely populated parts of the US where swimming is king and kids flock to the pools. Otherwise, I don't see how could the US be so good at it. Where are these places?

           

          Someday, I think it would be cool if just as many kids aspired to be Olympic runners too. Okay, I'm being naive again. 

            I know I'm very naive when it comes to the swimming world.  It wasnt' very popular where I grew up, and is only marginally popular where I live now. There must be some densely populated parts of the US where swimming is king and kids flock to the pools. Otherwise, I don't see how could the US be so good at it. Where are these places?

             

            Someday, I think it would be cool if just as many kids aspired to be Olympic runners too. Okay, I'm being naive again. 

             

            (I may be doing a little bit of a thread-jack but I am originally from Canada and sang the same Royal Anthem as the brothers and sisters from NZ & AUS...).

             

            In Canada, I didn't know a single swimmer when I was growing up.

            I now live in Texas, and my youngest son (age 8) is a pretty decent swimmer on a decent swim team.  In fact, a coach at his pool is in London now coaching the open water swim team for the USA.  Swimming is a technique sport that requires hours of training to perfect the technique (like a violinist practices to master their technique).  The training is much more intense than the event.

             

            Last weekend, our family got in a car for a state swim meet in Corpus Christie (7 hours south of DFW) to swim in 3 events.

            He was in 3 events, and swam a total of 1 minute and 12 seconds. (25 yard freestyle, 50 yard freestyle, and a relay race).

            We drove across the state for 1 minute of activity.

            Fortunately (or unfortunately), he qualified to the national swim meet in Pennsylvania next summer.  Yeah! (Ugh!)....

             

            Within the US, I don't know where most swimmers come from, but traditionally, most swimmers were from California (but, Phelps is from Maryland, Lochte is from Florida, MissyT is from Colorado).

            2014 Goals:

            #1: Do what I can do. <DOING>

            #2: 365 Hours training <NOPE, INJURED>

             

              According to CBC, Aus has 22 medals (2/12/8) which puts them in 8th overall. 

               

              http://www.cbc.ca/olympics/ Wink

               

              That must be updated since the BBC broadcast I heard, which may have been taped last night.

              Good for them, glad the situation is improving.

               

              I always think we in Canada have a  relationship with the US similar to that between New Zealand and Australia, part envy, part admiration, part pride in the things that make us different. Most of the rest of the world does not see much difference.

              PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                                  10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

               


              Best Present Ever

                 

                Last weekend, our family got in a car for a state swim meet in Corpus Christie (7 hours south of DFW) to swim in 3 events.

                He was in 3 events, and swam a total of 1 minute and 12 seconds. (25 yard freestyle, 50 yard freestyle, and a relay race).

                We drove across the state for 1 minute of activity.

                Fortunately (or unfortunately), he qualified to the national swim meet in Pennsylvania next summer.  Yeah! (Ugh!)....

                 

                 

                Congratulations!  Despite the ugh for the travel, that's pretty awesome. 

                 

                We just finished summer swim season here.  My husband and I are meet directors.  Both little ones swim in the summer.  We were at the pool from 4 pm - 11 pm on swim meet nights, working the entire time, so that the two kids could each swim 3-4 events that lasted 17 -60 seconds each.  Plus the 2 1/2 hours of practice a day, plus the various meetings and whatnot for the league. My youngest is going to swim year round now, and we'll get to add the driving to hell and back piece to the hours of practice a day.  Fortunately, Virginia is smaller than Texas.  And I'm not going to be on any committees.  : )  Almost everyone we know has kids who are involved/were involved in competitive swimming at least in the summer, many year-round (which is where the serious swimmers are). 

                DoppleBock


                  Cool - Congrats

                   

                  Both of my girls had no choice - Family rules are that you take swim lessons until Dad is confident you could swim miles to shore if we ever have an issue with our boat (Although yes - We make any < 16 YO wear a life jacket)

                   

                  The last 3 sessions of lessons offered are basically 45 minutes straight of swimming laps - Working of form - Many of these kids switch to swim team so they get 3 times a week.  It is pretty brutal swiming laps for 45 minutes if you only swim once per week.

                   

                  Oldest quit as soon as she was through the last class that was offered (Age 9)  The youngest (7) has progressed quicker and she will be in the last class this fall - I am trying to talk her into swim team, but she has not decided.  She is has really good technique.

                   

                  Neither my wife nor myself are swimmers, but be are boaters and swimming is something everyone should know how to do.  (Note:  I can swim / float gracefully miles if I need to - But techique sucks)

                   

                   

                  Last weekend, our family got in a car for a state swim meet in Corpus Christie (7 hours south of DFW) to swim in 3 events.

                  He was in 3 events, and swam a total of 1 minute and 12 seconds. (25 yard freestyle, 50 yard freestyle, and a relay race).

                  We drove across the state for 1 minute of activity.

                  Fortunately (or unfortunately), he qualified to the national swim meet in Pennsylvania next summer.  Yeah! (Ugh!)....

                   

                  Within the US, I don't know where most swimmers come from, but traditionally, most swimmers were from California (but, Phelps is from Maryland, Lochte is from Florida, MissyT is from Colorado).

                  http://a-big-horse.blogspot.com/ 

                  2013 Goals ~ Mar < 3:00, 5M < 29, 10k < 35  

                   

                  maryclaire


                    there is much talk here in Oz about our current performance (or lack of) at the Olympics.  Interestingly, there is also talk of our "soft" athletes, and the need to harden them up. 

                     

                    The gnashing of teeth comes with the territory - we just cannot stand to have the Kiwis beat us at anything!

                     

                    Personally, I am interested in the mental aspect of these elite athletes.  It is also one of the main reasons I run marathons and beyond - to learn more about mental toughness and how to harness it.

                     

                    Each athlete in the finals is surely as fit as the ahtlete in the next lane, is as prepared and hungry for gold, has the same self-belief - so perhaps it is what is between the ears that is most crucial?

                     

                    Sally Pearson delievered an historical gold medal for us today - but with only 0.02 seconds between 1st and 2nd, it is all the more awesome to watch the best in the world do their thing. 

                     

                    After a lot of the track races, it is clear that once the race is over, there is a lot of mutual respect amongst the comptetitors from other countries.  The exchanging of shirts after the 3000m mens' steeplechase was memorable.  The American woman (can't recall her name) who ran 2nd to Sally Pearson today was obviously ecstatic with her silver position.  That is good sportsmanship, and what I believe the rest of us "mere mortals" like to see ..

                      there is much talk here in Oz about our current performance (or lack of) at the Olympics.  Interestingly, there is also talk of our "soft" athletes, and the need to harden them up. 

                       

                      The gnashing of teeth comes with the territory - we just cannot stand to have the Kiwis beat us at anything!

                       

                      Personally, I am interested in the mental aspect of these elite athletes.  It is also one of the main reasons I run marathons and beyond - to learn more about mental toughness and how to harness it.

                       

                      Each athlete in the finals is surely as fit as the ahtlete in the next lane, is as prepared and hungry for gold, has the same self-belief - so perhaps it is what is between the ears that is most crucial?

                       

                      Sally Pearson delievered an historical gold medal for us today - but with only 0.02 seconds between 1st and 2nd, it is all the more awesome to watch the best in the world do their thing. 

                       

                      After a lot of the track races, it is clear that once the race is over, there is a lot of mutual respect amongst the comptetitors from other countries.  The exchanging of shirts after the 3000m mens' steeplechase was memorable.  The American woman (can't recall her name) who ran 2nd to Sally Pearson today was obviously ecstatic with her silver position.  That is good sportsmanship, and what I believe the rest of us "mere mortals" like to see ..

                       

                      It may sound odd, but it's not ultimately about the athletes. It's about the organisation and structure around them (and the money needed to do that stuff well). The model of how to win medals is the UK cycling setup - we've gone from one medal twelve years ago to being the dominant force in Olympic cycling  - 3 medals on the road, 9 on the track, chances of another in the BMX .

                       

                      But there's a whole process in place - identifying promising youngsters early; making good provision for coaching and training facilities; examining every aspect of performance in detail; studying what works well in other sports; researching and innovating with equipment ... the list goes on. 

                       

                      Of course the people on the bike winning the medals have worked really hard and are great athletes - but every country has people who could perform similarly with the right organisation in place. The current athletes will retire; but as long as the structure exists more will come through and do well.

                        there is much talk here in Oz about our current performance (or lack of) at the Olympics.  Interestingly, there is also talk of our "soft" athletes, and the need to harden them up. 

                         

                        The gnashing of teeth comes with the territory - we just cannot stand to have the Kiwis beat us at anything!

                         

                        Personally, I am interested in the mental aspect of these elite athletes.  It is also one of the main reasons I run marathons and beyond - to learn more about mental toughness and how to harness it.

                         

                        Each athlete in the finals is surely as fit as the ahtlete in the next lane, is as prepared and hungry for gold, has the same self-belief - so perhaps it is what is between the ears that is most crucial?

                         

                        Sally Pearson delievered an historical gold medal for us today - but with only 0.02 seconds between 1st and 2nd, it is all the more awesome to watch the best in the world do their thing. 

                         

                        After a lot of the track races, it is clear that once the race is over, there is a lot of mutual respect amongst the comptetitors from other countries.  The exchanging of shirts after the 3000m mens' steeplechase was memorable.  The American woman (can't recall her name) who ran 2nd to Sally Pearson today was obviously ecstatic with her silver position.  That is good sportsmanship, and what I believe the rest of us "mere mortals" like to see ..

                         

                         

                        That 100 hurdles race was freaking awesome!  I never thought it would be as close as it was.  Dawn Harper had a great attitude about 'only' taking silver (to be expected as the odds-on favorite was Pearson) but Carmelita Jeter's outlook on her silver in the 100m really surprised me.  I expected to see disappointment and pouting but was pleasantly surprised by the cheerful attitude and sportsmanship she showed after her final.  She was the odds on favorite and handled 2nd place really well.  My respect for her went up several notches (not that I had a problem with her before) after her post-race interview.  This is what I personally like to see from Olympic athletes - win or lose show some class, respect to the competition and a tip of the hat to your competitors.  Bolt impressed me in this Olympics in this regard also.

                          when Sally won they were quick to mention that she's the only Australian to win gold in that event since Cathy Freeman, now there's a name I haven't heard in a long long time. 

                           

                          They don't push you in sports anywhere near they do over here.  Aussies are soft for a reason, we're not genetically predisposed. 

                            I don't understand swimming events. Why are there so many at such short distances? It seems odd to me that one athlete can win a medal in so many official Olympic events. The events just don't seem diverse enough.


                            Best Present Ever

                              That 100 hurdles race was freaking awesome!  I never thought it would be as close as it was.  Dawn Harper had a great attitude about 'only' taking silver (to be expected as the odds-on favorite was Pearson) but Carmelita Jeter's outlook on her silver in the 100m really surprised me.  I expected to see disappointment and pouting but was pleasantly surprised by the cheerful attitude and sportsmanship she showed after her final.  She was the odds on favorite and handled 2nd place really well.  My respect for her went up several notches (not that I had a problem with her before) after her post-race interview.  This is what I personally like to see from Olympic athletes - win or lose show some class, respect to the competition and a tip of the hat to your competitors.  Bolt impressed me in this Olympics in this regard also.

                               

                              I thought Jeter was particularly great since the interviewer seem to be baiting her, and she absolutely refused to be anything but thrilled about her silver and gracious about the winner.  

                                I don't understand swimming events. Why are there so many at such short distances? It seems odd to me that one athlete can win a medal in so many official Olympic events. The events just don't seem diverse enough.

                                 

                                Historical accident combined with the nature of the sport. Some things - e.g. hockey, basketball, boxing - you have to play loads of games over the space of a week in order to get a single medal. Whereas others you can win a handful of medals for a similar amount of application.

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