In my 31 December post Don’t Call It A Comeback’, I advocated that sports stars should have a Plan B in place, so they know what else they want to do with the rest of their lives, once they leave their field of excellence.
By coincidence Rebecca Adlington seems to have done that sort of thinking, before making her announcement this week that she is moving on from competitive swimming.
I love the clarity of her vision, set out at her press conference. Quoted in the Daily Telegraph she said:
“I want to create a legacy, which is trying to get every single child to be able to swim 25 metres before they leave primary school… That would be my absolute goal in life. I know it’s very ambitious but I wouldn’t have said five years ago that I would have had four Olympic medals in my drawer at home. I know with a lot of hard work you can achieve things. It’s such a life skill and it would overtake anything I’ve achieved medal-wise. It would be greatest legacy of all for every child in the UK to be able to swim”.
That sounds to me like she has had some effective coaching during her competitive swimming career. In fact it sounds as if she has answered the question of what else she wants in her life, to her own satisfaction. I don’t doubt she has the motivation to succeed in her new goal too.
- In praise of … Rebecca Adlington | Editorial (guardian.co.uk)