2017 / 10 / 26
Instructor of the Athlete Career Programme Pedro Yang
On 25th October 2017, the IOC Athlete Career Programme seminar was held in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania. The seminar was integrated into the 3-days event of the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania (LNOC) – LTeam sports conference and was aimed exclusively at professional athletes. 37 experienced athletes participated in the seminar and later attended the conference.
Daina Gudzinevičiūtė, President of LNOC in her welcome speech said: “We care about every former, present or future Olympian. This seminar is only one of the measures for helping athletes stay an important part of the society after ending their professional athlete’s career. Their knowledge and experience in the field of sports is authentic, unique and beneficial for acquiring a second career.”
LNOC President Daina Gudzinevičiūtė
Most athletes already know what they want. To help make dreams become plans and plans become reality, two representatives of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) - a former professional badminton player and Olympian, instructor of the Athlete Career Programme Pedro Yang from Guatemala and the still active professional pentathlon athlete, sports consultant and medic, IOC volunteer Dmytro Kirpulyanskyy from Ukraine shared their knowledge and experience with the participants of the Second Career seminar.
Dmytro Kirpulyanskyy and Pedro Yang
By using innovative methods, the tutors helped to reveal the listeners’ dominant character traits, personality types, presented the possible study sources, helped to recognize personal skills and advised on ways of employing them in other fields.
“For us athletes it is important to start thinking as early as possible about embarking on a second career. Athlete’s occupation is a very temporary thing - we receive applause only while we win medals. After that we become equal to those applauding. And in terms of career, specific skills, and knowledge we are actually behind them,” said high jumper Raivydas Stanys, silver medal winner of the 2012 European championship.
R. Stanys is already quite definite about his plans after ending athlete’s career – he is interested in sports management. However, other athletes are facing a tough decision or still think that the end of their careers is quite far away.
“It would be difficult to leave my field of sports altogether. I would like to remain involved even after ending my professional career. I am not sure yet about what I want to do next, that is why I came to the Second Career training,” says cyclist, Tour de France participant Ramūnas Navardauskas.
Long-distance runner Diana Lobačevskė is considering a career of a sports manager or agent, sprint canoer Aurimas Lankas is dwelling on a choice between finance and politics, Andrejus Oleinikas is leaning towards the music industry, while Ričardas Nekrošius is simultaneously engaging in professional sports and building up his sports scientist’s career.
The seminar helped the athletes to understand more about who they are and what kind of traits they possess. They also found how their skills can be transfered into business and work life. The IOC Athlete Career Programme was created and delivered by the IOC Athletes’ Commission, the International Olympic Committee and the Adecco Group.
Photos by Vytautas Dranginis