Andrew Olsen: sports as a tool to be a better person
On medical advice, Andrew began swimming at 11 years old. Five years later, this Trojan has an outstanding performance in water sports, especially breaststroke. In the National Ranking of the Youth B category (15 to 17 years old) he has the following marks:
- First place in 100 meters breaststroke.
- Second place in 200 meters breaststroke.
- Third place in 50 meters breaststroke.
Despite these positions, he believes that participating in sports is not just about putting medals around his neck. It’s more the idea of continually improving and taking sports as a platform that allows you to grow in different facets of life.
The attraction to breaststroke is related to the difficulty it demands. Andrew explains that this is the only style that is not cyclical, it has complex movements, there are pauses so each stroke starts separately, and the movement requires strength.
The Costa Rican Federation of Aquatic Sports (FECODA) organized a tournament last December that brought together more than 150 swimmers in the men’s and women’s divisions. This event was held in La Sabana, under strict sanitary standards to protect the integrity of the athletes.
Andrew recently changed categories, a situation that is difficult for swimmers as they stop being the experienced ones and become rookies in the new category. In addition, the restrictions imposed by the pandemic became an obstacle that forced him to change teams and completely stop his participation in this sport. It took him up to 3 months to regain his competitive level, after the measures were loosened.
Despite these factors, Andrew won two silver medals in that tournament: in the 200 meters breaststroke and 200 meters crawl.
“It was an unusual tournament; swimming is a very social sport. This tournament was very different. I saw my colleagues from other teams and I wanted to say hello, but I couldn’t because I had to keep my distance”, he said.
Do you accept the challenge?
Imagine dedicating 4 hours a day, every day, to a training routine. In addition, fulfilling the obligations of a high school student… at first it doesn’t seem complicated, but over time it can become a heavy burden.
Andrew admits that his repetitive training routine bores him, yet he finds it challenging to meet the demands when entering the water. Feeling pain and sometimes almost drowning makes him feel alive, which prompts Andrew to keep moving forward and overcome the challenges imposed by the routine.
Recently, Andrew participated in the first tournament of the year organized by FECODA. There he competed in the 200 meters breaststroke and 400 meters freestyle, where he obtained gold and bronze medals respectively.