All for glory - GulfToday

All for glory

Japan Olympics

Representational image.

A lot is being said about the Olympics. The Olympics are one of the most important events the world that is held every four years. The eyes of all the countries are on what’s happening at the venue — this time it’s Tokyo (“China make strong start, bag three golds to lead medal tally,” July 24, Gulf Today).

While it all sounds oh so glamorous, and the sportspersons who represent their respective countries at the Olympics are nothing short of sporting gods and goddesses — the best from their countries, the Olympic games of today’s era are about cutthroat competition. With the wide coverage, and the pressure to not let down one’s country, a huge invisible burden rests on the shoulders of the athletes.

A lot of us would buckle under such pressure before even reaching the Olympics. It is difficult to not be mentally stressed when the eyes of the world are on you and also the expectations of your country.

And thus, the pleasure of sports for the sheer pleasure of sports, wanes. The competition reaches feverish heights and it almost turns unhealthy. All that matters in the end is that gold medal. All that matters at the end of the Olympic Games is how many medals each country got. The worth is measured in medals. But is that what the games are really about?

What if medals were thrown out of the picture? What if the games were a display of athletic prowess and performing for thrilling the audience? Would the Olympics be reduced to a concert from the competitive sports that it is now?

And if that were so, is it then about the medals or the sports?

It’s one thing to train and be the best self you can be. But when the world decides to measure your best self with its worldly narrow parameters, and your worth is defined by a medal of metal, well, something needs some thinking.

Byron M
By email

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