Staff Reporter WINDHOEK - The Athletes Commission under the auspices of the National Olympic Committee and Commonwealth Games Association (NNOC-CGA) hosted the maiden edition of the Athletes Forum at the Namibia University of Science and Technology’s (NUST) Auditorium 1 in Windhoek on Saturday. In partnership with the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service, Namibia Sports Commission and NUST, the one-day gathering was aimed at educating elite and high performance athletes while serving as a platform to gather relevant information on how athletes can improve their quest for excellence. NAC chairperson Gaby Ahrens said the initiative is an important platform to address appropriate issues facing athletes and all other high performance-related factors. “It is not only seek to provide information but the ultimate am is to encourage athletes to become involved in their own development, while understanding their role and their coaches in preparation for future international competitions,” charged Ahrens. Athletes learned about anti-doping rules and regulations at international level, understanding the importance of sports psychology, and were introduced to career options available to retired athletes through sport management degrees offered by NUST. Highlighting and educating on anti-doping is one of the key focus areas of the Athletes Forum. The forum has noted that often athletes are not aware of what is prohibited – for instance influenza medicine could test positive for banned substances. “The testing procedure can be stressful for the athlete at events if they are not aware of the constraints, so preparation is therefore essential to mitigate and avoid stressful situations,” added Ahrens. Attendants at the Bank Windhoek-sponsored event included internationally acclaimed personalities and local speakers discussing multiple areas of expertise in sports. Internationally renowned motivational speaker and sports psychologist, Dr Henning Gericke, highlighted the importance of achieving mental toughness during competition while Kirsty Coventry, one of Africa’s most successful Olympians and incumbent chairperson of the Athletes Commission of the IOC, also addressed the athletes. Retired footballer Collin Benjamin, Commonwealth Games gold medallists Helalia Johannes, Jonas Junius Jonas, and double Paralympic gold medallist Ananias Shikongo, shared their personal journeys to sporting success, participating in question-and-answer sessions. Each participant received one of Dr Gericke’s multiple books, courtesy of Bank Windhoek.
New Era Reporter
2018-08-06 10:26:19 6 months ago