The British indoor and outdoor long jump record holder talks about the skills needed to reach the top of your game.
Raise Your Game: What does it take to be at the very top of this sport?
15 September 1981
- Bronze - European Championships, Barcelona (2010)
- Represented Great Britain in the long jump at the Olympics (2004, 2008)
- Silver - World Indoor Championships, Valencia (2008)
- Broke the Olympic gold medallist Lynn Davies' 34-year-old British long jump record with 8.27m in Tallahassee Florida in 2002, which rocketed him from 100th in the world rankings to fifth adding some 52cm to his lifetime best.
Chris Tomlinson: You've got to enjoy it. Once you start enjoying something you can then start working hard. You also need to be disciplined to train hard, maintain a healthy diet and have confidence and self-belief.
RYG: You've suffered quite a few injuries throughout your career, how do you stay positive through those difficult times?
CT: Injuries are the toughest thing for any sportsperson to deal with. I try and use a few quotations to help me through the moments of toughness.
RYG: Do you find it helps to set yourself goals?
CT: Yes, of course. As athletes we're obviously working towards the London 2012 Olympics, but we can't just say 'I want to win 2012,' it's more about 'How am I going to win 2012?' It's focusing on the building blocks that I'm going to use to go from strength to strength.
RYG: How important is dedication and commitment?
CT: They are absolutely crucial. You can reach certain levels when you're a young athlete without a doubt, but if you want to reach the top and emulate the success of Olympic athletes you need dedication, commitment and you need confidence. These are skills that you can use in all aspects of your life.
If you've got the right mental skills you can apply them to any challenge that you meet.
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