Bolivian President Evo Morales spoke with Cuban Olympic champion Alberto Juantorena on possible strategies to strengthen sports practice and training athletes in this Andean Amazonian nation, Prensa Latina reported on Wednesday.
"I suggested to President Evo that if they do not work with children and young people from an early age, it is very difficult to achieve high performance athletes," said the vice president of the National Institute of Sports, Physical Education and Recreation (Inder) during a press conference in the central city of Cochabamba.
He also said that in his exchange with the president he explained details of the work strategies in Cuba for the development of athletes and stimulate the mass practice of physical activities in all age groups. Of the 84 Olympic champions in our country, more than 99 per cent came from the primary levels. The concept is to have a pyramid with a broad base, and to select the talents in schools and communities so that they go to the top for their potential, he said.
The president of the Cuban Federation of Athletics also recalled that the government of the Caribbean island provides important economic support for this activity, "with modesty, with great humility, because we are not a country of great resources, a subject that hurts us mainly in sports equipment and facilities'. He also praised the celebration of the Plurinational Sports Games President Evo.
I think they are the right path, the fertile soil for the sports tree to emerge. If we work well and in the early ages, do not doubt that in the near future we will have champions in Bolivia at any level, he said. However, Juantorena asked him "to be patient, because an athlete is not made in a day. They have a cycle and a preparation from many points of view, sport, physical, psychological. There can be no rush. "
Of these topics I spoke with the president, to work from an early age in the schools, to train children and adolescents with determination to be better citizens and athletes, and defend with love and decorum the Bolivian flag in any competition, he concluded.
Translated by ESTI