It was a cold, blustery, autumnal October evening when 4 intrepid recruitment consultants made their way to Lords, as of next year the home to archery at the London 2012 Olympic Games. Their mission – to have a go at archery under the watchful eyes of Team GB archers and of course, check out the wonderful venue that is to host their sport next year in the greatest sporting competition in the world.
I have to say, we were a bit nervous. ‘How can wine, gale force winds and bows and arrows ever be a good combination?’ we were thinking.
Clearly Team 2012 had the same idea!
First came the mingling. We met a young archer who was a hopeful for the games, along with some of the Archery GB coaches, one of whom was also a history buff who later delighted us with a rather scary looking collection of old fashioned arrows, one of them even came from the battlefield at Agincourt – impressive!
This was followed by a fantastic talk by Dr. Katherine Bond, one of the psychologists working with the athletes and their families ensuring they are mentally ready and prepared for the pressure of competing in a home games. I have to say, it’s all rather impressive in terms of levels of hard work, commitment and sheer determination to succeed. We all came away feeling a little overawed, although a lot of the principles they discussed could also be applied to our everyday lives and also help us at work. For example, being prepared, always having a plan B, being positive and determined to succeed, all things we can use to help us be successful people and recruiters!
Then came the bit we were all waiting for – having a go at the archery itself. We were treated to a demo by three of the archery GB team, 2 of whom had won about 6 medals between them at several different Olympics, were European Champions, World Champions, you get the idea. It looked pretty easy, line it up and shoot, right?
Hmmmm, no. It seems the trick in archery is actually to aim straight at the floor, as the arrow inevitably will fly into the air (hopefully onto the target). We all managed to get all our arrows on the board, with a few bulleyes to boot. Probably shouldn’t mention that our board was only about 10 metres away from where we were shooting from. Olympic distance is 70 metres, with a target half the size, with significantly bigger bows………
Tom managed to outdo everyone as usual by getting all arrows in the bullseye and then showed off even more by shooting left handed as well as right handed. Fair play to Gemma and Ali for getting all arrows on the board without breaking any nails and Ben even managed a couple too. Didn’t like being beaten by girls though, so went back for another go, he got there eventually bless him
Then finally, when we couldn’t do ourselves any harm and all arrows were safely stored away, we were offered wine and canapés and a bit more mingling and networking with other guests, Team 2012 athletes and staff. Shame they didn’t give us an Olympic athletes diet, the pizza and mini pasties were pretty tasty though!