JEAN-LIONEL REY’S INTERVIEW
Check out our video of the week featuring Jean-Lionel Rey, former French swimmer and national coach. He talks about about the impact of the cultural mix on high performance sport.
The first idea that comes to mind is the breakup of Eastern European countries. At that time, there was a real spread of knowledge, especially in swimming. Because the Eastern countries were very strong in swimming, and so there was really an explosion of knowledge, of the training methodology they had been able to develop, because they were rather ahead of others on the whole training methodology.
In swimming, we have quite different cultures. It’s true that there are still some major hubs left. There is everyone Anglo-Saxon with the Americans and Australians. There is also the whole Asian side that is currently booming in swimming. So, with the Japanese in particular—we have the Tokyo Olympics coming up—and the Chinese. There is really an Asian hub that is developing. Then there is the European side, which is also something a little different.
After this dissemination of knowledge, there is another thing that has appeared a little more recently. It’s that athletes are moving more and more. They change coaches and structures more often. Going elsewhere, becoming more and more open. The spread of knowledge also involves athletes and the experiences they can have in different countries. It’s true that this plays a role and it really multiplies knowledge.