Rune Dall Jensen, Ask Vest Christiansen and Kristoffer Henriksen
As a multi-sport event that only takes place every four years and is accompanied by intense media coverage, the Olympic Games are often described by athletes as a defining moment in their careers. The objectives of the present study were: 1) to describe differences in expectations of Olympic debutants towards the Olympics and their actual experiences while they were at the Games; and 2) to describe how the athletes negotiate the balance between performing at and enjoying the experience of the Olympic Games. Further, we will discuss the athletes' stories in light of the differences between the goals and expectations of the elite sport system and those of the individual athletes. Data was collected through a qualitative interview study with a pre- and post-Olympic competition design.
Using a semi-structured interview guide, we interviewed 14 Danish Olympic debutants about their Olympic goals and expectations within a month preceding their departure for the Olympic Games and about their actual experiences within a month following their return.
Condensed narratives from two Olympic debutants represent the spectrum of the athletes' expectations and experiences: one failed in his performance but had a great experience; the other was successful and won a silver medal but was truly unhappy with her experience. The debutants emphasize balancing their desire to perform with a desire for social experiences. They also discussed the challenges posed during preparation and goal setting.
Olympic debutants are caught in a very real dilemma between the Olympics as the “most important competition of their athletic careers” and “the Olympics as the experience of a lifetime.” This dilemma is linked to a wide rift between the perspectives and goals of the sport organization and those of the athletes.
Performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) crises in sport provide stories for the mass media. From individuals such as Ben Johnson and Lance Armstrong, to countries and organisations such as Russian Athletics and Major League Baseball. More recently, research has emerged that suggests that those who take drugs, even the once, are permanently advantaged over those who never have (Egner et al., 2013; Eriksson, 2006). This has expanded existing arguments related to PEDs, even extending debate to one that argues that PED use should be monitored and legalised in order to create a level playing field – as opposed to ‘banning’ athletes. In contrast, there are varying reasons for the rationale of ‘clean’ sports. In the first kind of discussion related to this the central premise is often about health concerns and PED use. In the second discussion, we hear much about cheating, unfairness, and the perversion of sport (Schneider & Butcher, 2000). At the present time, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) police PED use in sport and use Anti-Doping Rule Violations (ADRVs) that allow a sliding scale of transgressions with lifetime bans not given in the first instance of a failed test. Put simply then, these ADRVs do not facilitate a system for those not wishing to compete with others who, at any time, have used PEDs. However, in the 1980's a number of people in Britain made the decision to distance themselves from what they saw as significant doping in British and international Weightlifting. They achieved this through creating competitive strength organisations dedicated to a drug free for life ethos. In this paper I draw on the experiences and reflections of some of these key people, and contend that it was the ideology of fairplay that influenced this movement, and that the rules on PED use should not be fully authoritative and determinate.
education's contribution to young people's physical activity levels. Health Education Research , 2005. 20(1), 14-23.
Frömel K., Novosad J., & Svozil Z. Pohybová aktivita a sportovní zájmy mládeže. Olomouc: Univerzita Palackého. 1999.
Jackson A. W., Morrow J. R., Jr., Hill D. W., & Dishman R. K. Physical activity for health and fitness: An individualized lifetime approach. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics 1999.
Lubans D. R., Morgan P. J., Callister R. & Collins C. Effects of integrating pedometers
Krystyna Pawlas, Natalia Pawlas, Elżbieta Kmiecik-Małecka and Andrzej Małecki
., Pawlas K. Environmental lead exposure affects auditory pathway and brain electric activity in children. Eur. J. Neurol. 2005. 12, Suppl 2, 291.
Poblano A., Rothenberg S. J., Schnaas L., Elias Y., Cruz M. L. Spatial distribution of EEG theta activity as a function of lifetime lead exposure in 9-year-old children. Neurotoxicology 2001. 22, 439-446.
Polechoński J., Błaszczyk J. The effects of acoustic noise on postural sway of male and female subjects. J. Hum. Kinet. , 2006. 15, 37
. (2013). Socio-environmental influences on physical activity among young people: A qualitative study. Health Education Research , 28, 954–969.
Klein, T. (2009). Determinants of sport activity and sport in the lifetime. Kolner Zeitschrift fur Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie , 61, 1–32.
Lera-Lopez, F., & Rapun-Garate, M. (2005). Sports participation versus consumer expenditure on sport – Different determinants and strategies in sports management. European Sport Management Quarterly , 5(2), 167–186.
Lera-Lopez, F., & Rapun-Garete, M. (2011
Levermore, R. & Beacom, A. (2012). Opportunities, limitations, questions. In R. Levermore & A. Beacom (Eds.), Sport and International Development (pp. 246–268). Basingtoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan UK.
Mandela, N. (2000, May 25). Speech at the Inaugural Laureus Lifetime Achievement Award 2000 . Sporting Club Monte Carlo, Monaco. Retrieved September 25, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GdopyAFP0DI&t=108s
Right To Play. (2017, May 15). Our Beginning... [Home page]. Retrieved September 25, 2018, from http
Gabriel Lozano-Berges, Ángel Matute-Llorente, Alejandro Gómez-Bruton, Alex González-Agüero, Germán Vicente-Rodríguez and José Antonio Casajús
Initiative. The Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) statement: guidelines for reporting observational studies PLoS Med 2007 4 e296
Wallace LS, Ballard JE. Lifetime physical activity and calcium intake related to bone density in young women. J Womens Health Gend Based Med 2002; 11: 389-398 10.1089/152460902317586029 12150501
Wallace LS Ballard JE Lifetime physical activity and calcium intake related to bone density in young women J Womens Health Gend Based Med 2002 11 389 – 398
, K.E., Laukkanen, A., Smith, J.J., Dudley, D., Lubans, D.R., Lander, N. J., Lenoir, M., Brown, H., Iivonen, S., & Morgan, P.J. (2016). Fundamental movement skills: an important focus. Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 35, 219-225.
Barnett, L.M., Ridgers, N.D., Hesketh, K., & Salmon, J. (2017). Setting them up for lifetime: Play competence perceptions and physical activity in young children. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 20, 856-860.
Booth, M.L., Okely, T., McLellan, L., Phongsavan, P., Macaskill, P., Patterson, J., Wright, J
Alexandra Stănescu, Imre Benedek, Mirabela Morariu, Mihaela Rațiu, Ramona Zavate, András Mester and Theodora Benedek
gender on outcomes of young AMI patients (VIRGO) study. Circulation . 2015;131:1971.
4. Thygesen K, Alpert JS, Jaffe AS, et al. Third universal definition of myocardial infarction. J Am Coll Cardiol . 2012;60:1581-98.
5. Lloyd-Jones DM, Larson MG, Leip EP, et al. Lifetime risk for developing congestive heart failure: the Framingham Heart Study. Circulation . 2002;106:3068-3072.
6. Smith SC Jr, Blair SN, Bonow RO, et al. AHA/ACC Scientific Statement: AHA/ACC guidelines for preventing heart attack and death in patients with atherosclerotic