Sports Exchange 2017
by Tyrus Yeo (S3S)
This year, I was fortunate enough to be chosen to take part in the Tianjin, Qin Huang Dao, and Beijing exchange trip organised by the A.S Watson group. Students from all over Hong Kong get nominated to receive this award, and this year there was a pool of 898 students from a variety of different schools. After strenuous interviews and camps, I was lucky enough to be shortlisted into the top 30 that were selected to go on this exchange. 30 in total, would embark on a five-day, four-night journey to the three aforementioned cities, visiting local attractions, the China National Team training facilities in Qin Huang Dao, and more.
During the trip, we had a lot of time to bond with the 29 other awardees, and especially my 10 group mates. Through these experiences, I learned that a lot of them were not only very good at their respective sports, as some of them are in the Hong Kong Youth National team already, but they also had other qualities that make them great people in general. This trip was also extremely valuable because it allowed us to visit places we normally couldn’t, like the China National Team training facilities in Qin Huang Dao, a port city east of Beijing. We were granted the opportunity to meet future China National Team members during their training, and admire the overwhelming size and newness of the training facilities. As we stood quietly on the side of the gymnasium, we witnessed how hard the gymnasts trained, and were then told that those athletes train for about eight hours every day, six days a week. I understood how strong-willed they were, as they may have failed countless times, yet were relentless and willing to endure the pain of training over and over again.
The award had no specifications or guidelines on how to be the “best” sportsperson, but I do believe that it does not only require you to be skilled at a sport, but demands, in fact, to develop you with the right qualities as a person, and as a leader.
This experience was one that I’ll never forget. I sincerely thank SISHK for nominating me to take part in a one-of-a-kind exchange that has positively impacted me for years to come, and I hope more student athletes from our school can experience something as special as this one.