Friday, August 10, 2012

Inspired by the Olympics

Mary Carillo recently presented a feature on Olga Korbut, and boy, did the memories flood back. The '72 Olympics were the first Olympics I can remember watching as a little girl, and I clearly remember Olga, her cute little pigtails, her big smile, and her amazing gymnastics. Her incredible performances prompted both my sister and me to beg our mom for gymnastic lessons, and she enrolled us in a class where we learned how to cartwheel and backbend and do the splits.

This summer is the first time that any of our kids have watched the Olympics. I don't know where we were or what we were doing four years ago, but it didn't include watching sports. This year is different. We've all been pulled into the fascinating world of elite athletes and their respective areas of expertise. I keep the TV on during the day, and we stop and watch depending on which events are being broadcast. My eldest daughter is hooked on women's volleyball and the twins love the swimming and the bicycling. (My middle daughter occasionally plops down to watch a gymnastics routine or a running race, but she's more interested in the Winter Olympics and will wait for the skaters.)

I've noticed that after she watches a volleyball match, my 14-year-old heads outsides and practices. She sees how long she can bump the ball without losing control and she works on her serves by batting the ball against the garage door (which drives me crazy, it's so loud, but I don't say a word).

Meanwhile, the twins have been working extra hard at their swim lessons. Just yesterday, the teacher remarked to me how much better they've gotten. Can a little girl really be inspired to improve her own athletic endeavors by watching Olympians compete? I think so.

Dinner last night: (turkey) lasagna, garlic bread

Exactly three years ago:

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I truly do believe a child can be inspired to greatness just by watching the TV olympic broadcasts. Every Olympian has a story to tell of what small thing back in their past got them fired up and on the path to being an elite athlete.