Published on 21/07/22
Relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions has meant the return of many activities including the relaunch of our ‘Inspire Me’ programme.
These whole school events are held approximately three times during our academic year providing an opportunity for our speakers to share their fascinating life stories whilst also highlighting achievements such as leadership, motivation and the many other skills the Inspire and Guide programme promotes through its curriculum.
We were delighted on this special occasion to welcome Bethany (Beth) Shriever to share her experience at the Tokyo Olympics winning gold in 2021 alongside gold at the World Championships that same year. Students were fascinated as Beth talked about her training regime, her cardboard (and very hard) bed in the Olympic village and the range of delicious food that was available to athletes. They learnt how she adjusted to Tokyo heat and humidity through hours in hot houses alongside the necessary weight training in her small bedroom.
Watching two videos of her Olympic and World Championship performances Beth described that roller coaster stomach dive, we either love or hate, to the students that hooked her onto the sport at an early age. She also described the hours of practice and competition with her brothers and colleagues that fostered her taste for this particular sport. Importantly, Beth talked about the determination and mental resilience that has formed such a key part of her success. How commitment is essential with the hours of repetitive practice involved, even the limitations to her post Olympic celebrations as the World Championships followed almost immediately.
Beth described the personal resilience needed when UK Sport withdrew its funding for women (but not males) competing in the Olympics and how this devastating news stimulated her to become yet more determined. Beth spoke about how she worked as a teaching assistant at Stephen Perse and her crowdfunding of £50,000 which allowed her to continue her training. Students were fascinated to see the actual bike she uses during the talk, although no stunts were performed due to Health and Safety regulations!
Following the whole school presentation and open questioning Beth spent a further hour with our sports scholars. Here the questions focused further on resilience training, nutrition, competing and the science behind the sport. We are indebted to Beth for taking the time out of her busy schedule to talk to our students, it was eye opening for students and staff alike. We all wish Beth the very best in her forthcoming competitions.
Find out more about our Inspire & Guide Programme at our Open Days - book your place.