Philippines’ IOC member Mikee says scientific training is key to further Olympic success

© George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News
© George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Manila, Philippines, August 18, 2021: The Philippines’ IOC Executive Board member, Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski, believes the success of the country at Tokyo 2020 can only be sustained in a scientific way.

The Philippines won four medals at Tokyo 2020, highlighted by the first gold medal in 97 years by weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz plus two silver medals and one bronze in boxing.

In an interview with ABS-CBN News on August 17, the Busan 2002 Asian Games show jumping champion said: “It’s unfortunate that success is only counted by medals not by the growth, not by the ways our athletes represented our country. It is what it is. But we just hope that the lessons of this past Olympics can urge those that can influence the lives of younger people to support them and try to encourage them to be the best that they can be.” 

To sustain the country’s Olympic gains, the IOC member agreed with Philippine Sports Commission Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez and Philippine Olympic President Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino that there should be an analytical and scientific approach in training athletes for high-level international play.

“I would assume there will be an assessment of the National Sports Associations that participated in the experience of their athletes in the Olympics. The quality of participants, the challenges they went through and how they were overcome,” she noted. 

“I think that we won't be able to sustain any of the gains if we don’t really track our activities and our progress in a very scientific way. Technology is not only being used only in sports competitions but now also in training as well,” she said. “If we don’t have these things we have to think how to keep up with the rest of the world.”

The IOC Executive Board member said she saw these signs in the performance of Diaz and the boxers.

“I am not a technical expert in any of these sports; I am just a sports fan just like a lot of other people. But I saw the difference in these athletes,” Cojuangco-Jaworski said. “The build of Diaz and our boxers looked different. Our boxers no longer lost steam.

“It’s good to see our athletes and sense that they can win. That they can reach the top. That is what made our joy complete - because of the performance of our athletes,” she concluded.