Why aren’t the BBC wetting their pants like me? Disappointed with coverage of SJ Gold

I can hardly contain my excitement!! However I was bitterly disappointed that the BBC chose to leave out the absolute headline of the day in their summing up which was that the Show-jumping team won gold – their first medal since the 50’s. What twat at the BBC decided to leave the showjumping out of the summary of the day. It is the holidays so I am out all day with my children and do not have the luxury of watching it on TV during the day. Once they are in bed (try to aim for 8pm) I can then relax switch on the box and check out what has happened. I am relying on the Beeb to keep me informed when I watch the Olympic highlights each evening but clearly they don’t give a shit about equestrianism.

Nick Skelton, Ben Maher, Scott Brash and Peter Charles

National newspapers seem to be better clued up on what the real Olympic headlines are as the Show-jumping team were emblazoned across every single tabloid and broadsheet on the news-stands today. WAKE UP BBC!!!!!!!

Thankfully BBC online is a bit more organised so I found out this morning that we had won gold and after a few determined searches was able to watch the highlights. Much to the amusement of my 6 year old and 8 month old as they watched me dance around the house in my nightie as I watched clear round after clear round (I was acting as if I was watching it live as I felt like I had missed out considerably).

Anyway enough Beeb bashing. This gold medal is just what British Show-jumping needed it is the answer to the sport’s prayers as it has been in the doldrums with dwindling TV coverage and sponsors for quite a few years now. Eventing has been centre stage for too long and it is time for Show-jumping to once again take the limelight and wow it is so well deserved – Nick Skelton and the team are an inspiration to all aspiring riders out there.

The dressage result is also fantastic – proof that we can be as precise and technically perfect as the Germans and the Dutch and that we know how to produce good gee gees.

Carl Hester

This Olympics just could not get any better…..or could it……could we really get individual Gold in the show-jumping too? I’m just getting greedy now aren’t I? Anyway I am off to watch it on the big screen at London Live in Hyde Park tomorrow thanks to Cadburys who gave us tickets following a competition and the chance to enjoy a tasting experience. I shall not eat all day tomorrow and just stuff my face with chocolate and ogle at the show-jumping (Mum is looking after the kids) i will be in heaven!!

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Thanks.

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Head games – getting in the right frame of mind for sport – but also for life

Becky Adlington’s Bronze in the 800m swim was brilliant. Her head however, wanted Gold, like the British audience. It was her head that let her down as she blamed the pressure from the British to win gold and that can only be a psychological issue. Isn’t it amazing how what we are thinking in our minds dictates our physical effectiveness? In Becky’s case it affected her technique so much so that she was way off her previous record. I feel really bad for her and can sympathise as we all know what it is like when you are there physically but not mentally. Not just in competitions and in situations when we are required to perform. It can affect us any time – like when you feel you didn’t get out the right side of the bed in the morning and it stays with you for the rest of the day.

I often find on days that I anticipate to be fun/ exciting/ good happy they turn out to be crap and vice versa – why is that? I went out last night with my husband. We were both knackered and didn’t really feel like going out but Mum was coming over to babysit so we had to grab our chance while we could although we just felt like nodding off. I thought ‘great we are so tired, we are just going to be irritable and snappy with each other and have a shit time’. On the contrary I just drove til I felt like stopping, saw a cool looking restaurant at the side of the road and we agreed to check it out and had a brilliant night. I bet you that if we had pre-booked a table somewhere amazing and anticipated a great evening it would have been shit.

With that in mind I try to assume that every day is going to be crap unless proved otherwise – and most of the time this kind of reverse psychology tactic works. If you don’t expect much then you might just surprise yourself and have a good time. Its got to the point that If I am dreading something I know that 80% of the time it will turn out well because I started off dreading it.

In sport it seems that emptying your head of all expectation and just enjoying the task ahead is key to winning over the psyche game. Charlotte Dujardin the GBR dressage rider performed an amazing test because she said she just went in the ring to enjoy herself and not ‘think’ herself out of the test by focusing too hard on each element of it. Being on top of your thoughts and feelings as a rider is particularly important because horses are hyper sensitive to changes in the rider’s temperament and this can make them play up and cock up too.

The fact that we have a team psychologist in Team GBR is proof of how powerful the mind is in winning medals. It is also true of how we enjoy life in general. I firmly believe that there are no limitations except those we create ourselves. Go Team GB!

I typed this while watching the women’s 400 metre final hence the olympic/sport angle and Christine Ohuruogou just won Silver – whoop whoop!

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