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For Penny Werthner, sports psychologist to Canada’s freestyle ski team and women’s curling team, the prestige grows with the stream of Olympic athletes who go into coaching and bring memories of the mental rigors of their competition.
« I don’t have any miracles to help an athlete win if they haven’t done the training, » said Werthner, herself a former Olympic competitor in the 1976 Summer Games in Montreal.
« It is how well an athlete, and a coach for that matter, manage their nerves and anxieties so they can do the job they have trained to do. »
In a nutshell, the secret seems to be to breathe deeply at the startline and not think — too much, at any rate.