Wrestling With Balance
Courtesy of Commonwealth Games Canada
With the first day of competition upon us in Glasgow, many in Canada wouldn’t realize that not all Canadian athletes have arrived yet in Glasgow. With competition at this high-level and ensuring that certain distractions are at a minimum, some teams who compete at the later part of the Games arrive after the opening ceremonies closer to their first competition day. The Canadian 2014 Commonwealth Games wrestling team is a prime example of this, and they are well aware of their priorities.
The accomplished 2014 Games team will include seven men, seven women and four coaches and the delegation will be arriving at the Games with high expectations.
Leadership will no doubt come from the team members with significant international and multi-sport experience, including 2012 Olympian David Tremblay and defending Commonwealth Games silver medalist Korey Jarvis (120KG), but some advice from an extremely knowledgeable source will not hurt.
Carol Huynh was the first gold medalist for Canada in women’s wrestling and was the first gold medalist for Canada at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. She is also the current reigning Commonwealth Games and two- time Pan American Games champion. When asked about her greatest Commonwealth Games memories, she doesn’t have to think very hard.
“I have tons of great memories from the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi,” says Huynh. “Competing for Canada against Commonwealth countries is always a source of immense pride and a responsibility to be at my best on and off the mats.”
But press a little further and it is the culture and Games’ community that also had a great influence.
“Seeing a long-tailed monkey sitting on the back of a guy’s bicycle in the village was extraordinary. We were so excited, we rushed over and it bared its half-foot long incisors and freaked us out! It was pretty hilarious,” said Huynh. “Seeing elephants sharing the highways with vehicles, taking a train specially reserved for Commonwealth participants to see the Taj Mahal – super cool!”
The Commonwealth Games experience is unique and with so many diversions, our high-performance athletes, team managers and coaches always try to ensure a good balance of experience and focus. As we prepare for the bulk of the wrestling team to arrive the morning of July 25th with wrestling competition starting on July 29th, Huynh’s advice on balance comes at the right time for this team as well as all Commonwealth Games athletes.
“Focus on your competition, that’s what you’re there for and what you’ve been training for,” says the Olympic, Commonwealth and Pan-Am Champion. “But balance it with being able to have fun and enjoy the sights and sounds of being immersed in a different culture/country.”
For a complete listing of the 2014 wrestling team and coaches, visit commonwealthgames.ca to download the media guide, or download the Team Canada 2014 app through iTunes.