Grace in Defeat

This photo says it all. As the king of the halfpipe, Shaun White, relinquishes his crown and exits in grace while in the background the new king, Switzerland’s Iouri Podladtchikov, emerges. As I watched the video it was a stunning scene watching Shaun gracefully leave the stage while from behind him Iouri emerges raising his arms in joy. Shaun White introduced us to snowboarding and made me realize there is more to the Winter Olympics than figure skating. Shaun is an incredible athlete and while disappointed he handled his loss with strength and grace.

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We all face defeat. We all have our confidence shaken. But like Shaun White we should accept these defeats with grace, acknowledging our own mistakes and not adopting a spirit of blame. If we let our defeat shake our confidence the result is often low self esteem and crippling fear. The rigorous training athletes endure helps them to shake off defeat. We could all benefit from athletic training to run our life race by handling our challenges with grace.


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