OLYMPICS UNLEASHED: Australian Olympians inspired hundreds of Queensland students at a special Olympics Unleashed presentation as part of the 2019 Sport Accord Festival on the Gold Coast last week.
Australian weightlifter Deb Acason, skeleton racer Jackie Narracott as well as sprint kayaker Alyce Burnett shared their Olympic journey and how students can use these lessons to unleash their own passions.
Alyce Burnett was supported by K2 partner Alyssa Bull, who took on a new role as ‘BK’ (Boxing Kangaroo) mascot, and emphasised the importance of finding something you love and following it.
“When I was younger, I didn’t embrace and love the grind of my athletic journey – yes I’d train and race but I wasn’t doing the extra little bits you need to excel. This sounds like a love story, but when I started training with ‘Bully’ (Alyssa Bull) I started loving the sport so much more. It really helped me unlock my passion and do all those extra one percenters that has made all the difference.
“If you can find teammates or schoolmates that help you love what you’re doing – in sport or anything else – it’s going to make it so much easier to do the extra work that lets you achieve incredible things.
Gaven State School teacher Kurt Gislingham appreciated the impact hearing messages from Olympians can have on students.
“The kids can see the commitment required to get there, but also the importance of doing your best in whatever you’re trying to,” he said.
“It’s so good seeing so many different sports represented – for the kids to hear form a weightlifter, kayaker or skeleton races is something out of the ordinary, it has a big impact on them.
“Kids have certain people in their lives that they get messages from – whether it’s teachers, family or someone else and sometimes kids may switch off. But to have Olympians talking about their own experiences and how that relates to them will cut through and really stick with them.”
Olympics Unleashed takes Olympians and aspiring Olympians into schools across Queensland to share the ideals of Olympism and show how students can build resilience, set goals and follow their passions to be the best they can be – whether on the sporting field, at school or at home.
In NSW, also Jessica Fox is an Olympic Unleashed ambassador.