Monday, September 15, 2008

Winning Performance --- First Competition

3 weeks have passed. Nothing worthy to occupy this blog space except the four letters word--- Bore.
Today is the last training and tomorrow is the competition. For me, the present scenario is similar to one of those scenes during last day of school before term ends or the day before long vacation leave from office.

My son, I have named him as Adler ---- the eagle, only recently. He is characterised by the chattering nature and comedian style of acting in the family. He is similar to any other boys except this one maybe, he creates exclusive cartoon character and series during his leisure, names like nono, fatty,… is only comprehensive among my three children. Already in their collection are two full boxes of jotter books. His humorous can be best described with following dialogue,… “Adler please stop eating, you wish yourself to turn into a handsome or fatso when grown up.” The straight reply without a blink from Adler is “a handsome fatso.” This is him.

Another very important character is demanding an introduction before I am able to proceed with the story. He is very supportive; he makes himself present at all the competition till now, irregardless of weather condition. Frankly, I never like him or his present, in-fact, once, I have told him to stay away. I am not appreciating his effort. As a matter of facts, I indicate that he is responsible for all of the Adler’s under perform events. I know is unfair to blame on someone else to distress from our failure to perform. I am not feeling any form of guilt because I never like him at all. Somehow, he has managed to sneak tactically behind us despite of our high level of alertness. He is the competitive anxiety.

I have done a little study regarding competitive anxiety, it is the reaction from competitors in both physically (somatic) and mentally (cognitive) which produces negative effect on performance abilities. Stress, arousal and anxiety are terms used to describe this condition.
Following are some of the typical behaviours:
Biting fingernail
Lethargic movements

Inhibited posture
Playing safe
Going through the motions
Uncharacteristic displays of extroversion
Avoidance of eye contact
Covering face with hand

Adler has shown symptom of anxiety when he drinks addictively while other symptoms including dry mouth and fingernail biting. Such behaviours retrieve part of my memory regarding anxiety. I have similar experience with anxiety during my examination in academic day. Diarrhoea is my symptom; one of my friends always throws out breakfast, another friend murmurs like priest’s exorcism praying.

I try to calm him down by gentle massaging on his neck while a lady has suggested the following tips to ease his situation. The procedure has improved but does not eliminate the anxiety.

1) Slowly close your eyes.
2) Relax all the muscles in your body.
3) Focus on breathing smoothly and naturally.

Combating anxiety is the tough battle in performance due to the invisibility property. With the helps from various relevant resources, we have reduced the amount but it is never eliminated. The beauty of it is, adequate amount enhances performance slightly but excessive amount deteriorates performance significantly.

At the spectator roll, the sight of his trembling knees is visible to me although I am quite a distance from his jumping board. To perform, this is the first hurdle to cross over.

Latest Articles

Powered by FeedBurner

Powered by Blogger

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Winning Performance --- First Training Continuation

The coach has finally arrived in casual outfit and movement. There are about ten swimmers; I can hardly identify my son among the half naked children. Without introduction, opening ceremony, speeches or any forms of contact to my boy, the first swimmer has already dived into the pool and swum towards the other end. In a blink, the entire group has disappeared into the pool. Now, to spot him is multiply harder than before.

Fifteen minutes later, I finally see him cling to the side of the pool, but the scene only last for a short while, after that he has merged himself into the pool of swimmers again. The same routine repeats cyclically by the coach’s unmerciful whistle, I can only grasp him momentarily by luck while he is clinging for a breath. This is definitely comprehensible for me; I can never forget those choking, out of breath, near death experience during my initial training with one of the best college Water Polo team. At that time, I am nearly twenty years old and well build, he is only eight and obese.

Anxiously, I am dead worry about his condition and physical ability to deal with the intense training. “He is not going to make it, he is going to quit” I whisper to myself silently.
Suddenly, images in my mind flash like the slide projector during one of those presentation, an ultra fine feeling of delightful hope is present with my unnatural sense of smile hanging at the corner of my lips. “May be this is the first and last training.” I whisper again silently. I shall resume my original activities with a little effort like, psychological strategy, reinforcement by using computer game as incentive; in order to deliver my message that this place is definitely hell to him.
Lean back, light up a cigarette. That is my way of displaying accomplishment.

“Daddy…..” The training has done at last.
He is sloughing, flush, speechless…………as I am expecting.
“How? Enjoy your training?” I reply
Without responding, he walks straight to the shower room by dragging his belongings and steps. I wait patiently for him as if is waiting for lottery result to be released in a short while after my heavy betting. On the way home, I remain rather calm and steady, waiting for his move of complain, so that I can take my shot effectively and efficiently at one goal.
Finally, he has broken the silent air,”Daddy.., can you fetch me tomorrow again?”
“What….? “ Now, I am speechless. “What?.....aren’t you tire at all?” I cannot believe what has happened, even worst I cannot understand him.
“Of course tire! Almost dying, But I want to win that skinny boy, I must win him” he replies without hesitation at all.
Now, I am like rodeo cowboy riding on the horse back, neither quit nor proceed willingly. What else can I do at this moment except …………………

I have underestimated his power to be a winner; this is one of the important attributes for any competitor that I have realised in much later stage. This is definitely an advantage But ………

Believe me, this is not the deciding factor for his achievement, definitely not, we have something else, something more niche, something like ………………………

Latest Articles

Powered by FeedBurner

Powered by Blogger

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Winning Performance --- First Training

During the first training, he has surfaced a corner of strong competing character. That is an enlightening evening for me, .........

That is a usual evening with unusual activity for me. I have traded my favourite dim, dark; confine space with cloudy smoke and beer for a bright, large, open space with fresh air and a bottle of mineral drink at the swimming pool. I am not sure weather this is a fair trade despite of the fact that it looks and feels much better from the PUB. I am doing it because I cannot find a good supporting reason to turn down. Upon reaching the swimming pool, I rigidly skirting my head hopefully to hear a couple of familiar voices shouting my name like usual. Obviously, my mind has not agreed to this new environment yet.

While I am figuring what is my next move, my son has already abandoned me for his friends. There are numerous parents looking creatures who look like me, they form in groups or some prefer to be undisturbed. Frankly, I am not in any mood to socialize at this moment, I just need an unoccupied corner to harbour after a hectic day. Anyway, it is kind of interesting and easy to identify those parents who have brought their child for training, probably due to the extremely emotionless boring zombie expression.

Randomly, I have chosen a location nearest to the pool, staring aimlessly into the three dimensional space, my sight is as diffusible as my mind. Perhaps, my only sensory apparatus which works concisely right now is my ear due to the performing orchestra; it is combined from splashing, whistling, children’s merry making, and coaches scolding. In order to run away from this terrible pursuer of boredom, my mind of fugitive is seeking busily with possible routes for fleeing. Choices of different routes continuously popping up then burst like bubble due to the fact that I am thirty minutes driving distance from the nearest populated market place.
This is a 3 hours training session for the next couple of weeks, it has not even started yet because we arrive fifteen minutes earlier. Naturally my attention has moved to focus on my only familiar figure…………………………

Latest Articles

Powered by FeedBurner

Powered by Blogger

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Winning Performance --- The Starter

3year ago……………………

In my country, additional curriculum seems to be pretty normal requirement for kids range from nursery to teenagers. After 5 days of hectic work as an Engineering Manager, I switch to become a rather relaxing chauffeur on weekend. I simply drive my kids from classes to classes. Saturday morning till 2pm afternoon is piano and art class, follow by a tuition class from 4pm to 6pm. Sunday morning is the leisure swimming class, afternoon is Mental Mathematic class. As parents, we feel kind of satisfying for our able in affordability and the children’s able in learning too.
Unfortunately, it does not turn out to what we have been expecting by the look of everything. Firstly decline academic performance despite of numerous tuitions, dragging attitude in the additional curriculum.

My wife and I have therefore derived a conclusion that the kids are probably too tire. The ways to turn the situation around is to cut activities and channel the energy into compulsory Academic area. The kids can have a choice of their interest to retain one additional curriculum. My daughter has chosen piano, my son has chosen swimming.

One day, I have reached home a little late after couple of drinks with usual faces in the PUB. My son walk to me with a piece of paper and say,” Daddy, teacher ask me to join the inter-primary school Swimming Competition.” Looking at his wobbling belly while he is talking, I simply reply without any feeling for sincerity. But, Anyway, I have received my own “Karma” for such lousy behaviour, I give up the entire drinking activity in order to fetch him for swimming training for five evenings a week, till now, I am actually writing by the pool side. Can anyone imagine that?

At first, I figure that everything will be over after the competition, than all the undesirable scene is only fragment of memory images from the nightmare. But I have seriously underestimated the power of masculine nature which every male has inherited from our dominating forefather on their land --- the desire to win.
Obviously, my son has inherited those from me too. His hidden craving to be winner has surfaced during the first training …………………….

Latest Articles

Powered by FeedBurner

Powered by Blogger

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner