A message from Claudia Bokel, IOC Athletes’ Commission Chair
The IOC Athletes’ Commission has been as busy as ever since the end of Sochi 2014.
During the Games, we introduced a new Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), and it’s now available for free to all athletes, providing engaging, educational content on an online platform.
We have five topics on there to begin with – nutrition, talent identification, career transition, cardiovascular response to exercise, and knowledge management – and we’ve also had our first live event with the former tennis star, Kim Clijsters.
It’s been very successful so far and it’s great that we’ve been able to create a platform for athletes where they can learn on the road from the best in the world of sport – be it other athletes, or university professors. It’s great for athletes as they can learn about things that will help them, not only in their sporting careers, but also in later life.
We have been focusing on the Athlete Career Programme in recent months. We have been on an outreach tour in Central and South America, visiting Guatemala, El Salvador, St Lucia, Chile, Peru and Argentina. We had a “train the trainer” session in Guatemala, so now we have more trainers in the region, who can spread the work of the Programme. In addition to that, we shall be looking to do similar training sessions in Europe this summer.
Most recently, I attended the WISE (Work In Sports Exhibition) event in Lausanne, where people from the world of sport came together with people looking for jobs in sport. There were many participants and we were able to promote the work of the Athlete Career Programme, which was a great opportunity.
Looking further ahead, I’m excited about going to the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing later this year. The Athletes’ Commission will be there to speak with the young athletes about the Athlete Career Programme as part of the Culture and Education Programme.
One of the other main things that we’ll be working on this year is the Olympic Agenda 2020. The discussions are centred on the three overarching themes of sustainability, credibility and youth. Working groups are currently being finalised, and will be looking at all the contributions. For our part, we’ve been very active in raising our voices on behalf of all athletes. The Athletes’ Commission will be involved in the working groups to ensure that athletes’ concerns are heard, and the outcomes will be presented at the Extraordinary IOC Session in December in Monaco.
It’s very important that athletes are represented in this decision-making process. In the same way, we are still working towards achieving our goal of having athletes’ commissions within all the National Olympic Committees and International Federations, and also seeing athletes on their executive boards with the right to vote. To help achieve this, we have created a “Guide to Developing an Effective Athletes’ Commission”, which is available in three languages. It can be found here.
Don’t forget – we are here to represent you, the Olympic athletes, so please get in touch if you have any issues to raise or questions to ask. You can contact us at any time by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With my best wishes,