coffee break ver. 1.31

This week's coffee break question from Jan:

Honestly, I really do not know if there will come a time that our athletes will shine better in the international arena. The problem with our athletes is primarily the lack of support, unlike other countries in which the athletes are really full time athletes. Here, most of our athletes need to earn for their families, so they do not really devote their full energies towards training. Especially since they are considered amateurs. A lot of our athletes who do relatively well are, sadly, self trained, meaning their parents sponsored their trainings.

It's a difficult question to answer, but there's a bright side to this. This is definitely possible, even if it would not be easy at all.

First, some support for the higher ups would be great. We know there are sports scholarships in schools. Why not give incentives for these schools to churn out great athletes? For example, if UST manages to train a swimmer who breaks some record or wins some medal, the school itself will also get some sort of "reward". Like maybe something as simple as tax discounts (if there are taxes in school -- I'm not really sure about this) or at least some sort of recognition.

Secondly, get sponsors for the athletes. If the athletes are to train in their respective sports, and especially if there is a big event like the Olympics, it would be better if he or she does not have to think about how much time will be lost because he's not working. Give them an allowance commensurate to what they would have received. Maybe give them housing too, in some athletic village, where theirr families could also live, so that they would not have to worry about where to live. With the numerous companies involved in sports related products, if we get them as athletes, they would have a good advertising deal and we would probably get better athletes.

I'm really no expert, so some of my ideas may seem funny. :( Bottomline is, anything that needs training needs the person to be completely focused. This includes athletes and sports. It would be difficult to focus if "practical" matters distract the athletes from sports glory.