Lizzy Yarnold Visits St Gabriel's!
Blink and You'll Miss Her!
How often does one get to have a double Olympic Champion, the most successful British Winter Olympian ever and the most successful Skeleton athlete ever, come to one's school? Not very often! So when the opportunity came to listen to Lizzy Yarnold, OBE, the athlete who travels at speeds of nearing 80mph, on what she herself said is sometimes called a 'tea-tray', it was an occasion not to be missed.
In an inspirational talk to the Sports' Scholars, 'She-ra' (as she is nick-named) spoke particularly of having the grit to overcome the emotion of failure, how if things go wrong, to 're-think the plan' and concentrate not on errors, but on 'What I can do right.' Through all the preparation and training, two things stood out, which were that the answers and lessons to be learned are within, and that one must continue to think of how one can get better. However, Ms. Yarnold was also keen to stress that whilst ultimate success comes from personal drive, it is okay to ask for help, and essential to have a good support team. From her early beginnings of loving sport from a young age, to balancing studying and training whilst at university, the importance of communicating with others as a means of maximising performance was a constant.
Finally, a message for all scholars, for all pupils, for teachers and parents, in fact, for anyone who wants to achieve to the best of their potential. When Lizzy first tried the Skeleton, she failed at her first go and very nearly quit then and there. Success rarely happens immediately and is always countered with a healthy dose of failure. In order to achieve, 'Don't panic', be prepared for 'a huge amount of hard work', enjoy what you do and success will come.
- Mr Ives