Canadian Olympian encourages Hants County gymnasts to follow their dreams

Carole Morris-Underhill
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Canadian athlete Karen Furneaux wants local youths to dream big and passionately pursue their goals.

The three-time Olympian and two-time world champion was in Windsor today, July 24, to inspire children attending a summer camp at Olympus Gymnastics to do just that. Along with Sarah Conn, the program co-ordinator for the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame, Furneaux explained how hard work, perseverance and life goals can take young athletes to amazing places.

“Our mission with the sport hall of fame is to educate kids and inspire kids and that's what I enjoy... and I'm lucky that I get to do that,” said Furneaux following her presentation.

Furneaux provided the youths with her motivational acronym DREAM, which stands for dedication, role model, evaluation (or goals), attitude, and momentum, and explained each component and how it relates to achieving goals.

She encouraged them to rethink any obstacles they may be facing and try different approaches to address problems or issues. For example, if they're having difficulty landing a jump, she suggested breaking the process down and focusing on perfecting specific aspects of it. With hard work, the pieces will fall into place.

“Climbing the mountain and getting to that big goal takes a lot of baby steps,” she stressed.

About two dozen youths were on hand to hear Furneaux explain how she became an Olympic kayaker — as a child, she also spent time as a gymnast — and had the opportunity to spend time with her prior to, and following, the presentation.

Stay tuned for a video clip of Furneaux's morning with the children.


Organizations: Olympics , Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame, Olympus Gymnastics

Geographic location: Hants County, Windsor, Olympus Gymnastics Canada Halifax Waverly

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