This fencing sensation is following her grandfather’s path to the Olympics | Heroes of the Future

This fencing sensation is following her grandfather’s path to the Olympics | Heroes of the Future


My name is Jolien Corteyn. I am 16 years old,
almost 17 years old. I represent Belgium and I’ve
been fencing since I was four. It is my passion and
I enjoy it a lot. (FENCING
BELGIUM) (JOLIEN IS ONE OF THE WORLD’S
TOP YOUNG SABRE FENCERS) (HEROES OF THE FUTURE) (DE KLAUWAERTS FENCING CLUB
SINT-NIKLAAS, BELGIUM) Sabre is a very attractive
sport, because it is explosive,
physical and spectacular sport, but it
requires restraint, control and a special mind-set. If you run the 100m in
12 seconds, you will not suddenly improve
to 11 second or 13 seconds. In fencing, it can be very
different. It depends what shape you’re
in, who your opponent is, the
referee, and so on. We have to train very hard,
we sweat a lot. The mask makes it mysterious, but it makes it more difficult
to breathe. We have to be very mobile. I think because some people
don’t know it that well, that it is being
underestimated. (SINT-NIKLAAS, BELGIUM
JOLIEN’S HOMETOWN) For Jolien, fencing
was a hobby and a game for a long time. We never pushed her in any way. From that moment on, when
she turned 12, she became very focused at training and
became a perfectionist. My friends that have known
me since I was little were used to see me and
my family fencing, but when I first meet somebody,
the initial reaction is always, “Fencing? You? A girl?” Jolien has always been
very explosive and vocal. She is not easily cornered, so it is the perfect
sport for her to get rid of her energy and
channel her aggression. She is not shy and needs
that kind of discharge. (SPORT VLAANDEREN TRAINING
CENTRE, GENT, BELGIUM) It wasn’t always easy having
two fencing daughters. There was always a big
competition between Saartje and Jolien. It was not easy when they were
younger and ended fencing against each
other. There was always one
winner and one loser. The loser came home to mom
crying and the other came home
to mom laughing. We train well together,
but we do clash sometimes. We both want to be the best. Saartje was always better and
older, but Jolien was catching up. Now, she is able to beat we at
times, so we must fight for who is the
best right now. At the moment, we can both
beat each other at times, but I have to practise hard
to be able to keep up. But it makes them glad that
we can do this together, that we can continue
this family tradition. They are proud, no matter what. Now they are proud I can
go to the Youth Olympics. I’m very proud of her. She
fought hard to achieve this. It was her dream for a very
long time, so I feel a lot of pride. It’s a pity I can’t compete, but I’m happy for her.
It’s all good. For me, it’s not really
important who is the best. I just want them to have fun
and do as well as they can. We went to Rio because my dad’s athlete
qualified for the Olympics. My reaction was, “Wow, this is
what I want to do. “This is the level
I want to be at.” That was a huge boost for
me to train ever harder. That’s our goal.
That’s why we are fencing. That’s why we are working
so hard at training. When I saw him with his
athlete, I thought, I want to be here as well. With him. I want to make
everyone proud. I want to be proud of myself.
I want to have that feeling. If Jolien would be able to
become Youth Olympic Champion or to get a medal, it will
be very emotional for me. I think it will be hard not
to cry in that moment. Their development
has been excellent. They are very motivated, and whatever happens
is a bonus. We will always be proud of her, whether she will be first or
last, with or without a medal. (HER TIME IS NOW) (OLYMPIC CHANNEL ORIGINAL
SERIES OLYMPICCHANNEL.COM)

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