UIPM Secretary General’s Message: Who should represent athletes and coaches in our Union?
Next week is going to be a very important week for many of the people who comprise our global UIPM Sports community.
With Egypt stepping in to host the UIPM 2021 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships – a competition which has been relocated twice, due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic – we all have an opportunity to show the world once again that we can endure this crisis by working and standing together.
The athletes participating in Cairo will all have different priorities and goals on the field of play, but I would like to think all of them (regardless of level, experience and nationality) will take a collective interest in the UIPM Athletes Committee Elections on the evening of June 10.
All athletes will be accompanied to Cairo by their coaches, and they too have an important democratic opportunity to cast their votes in the UIPM Coaches Committee Elections on the evening of June 9.
So who would be the ideal representatives on these two important forums?
Personally, I would hope to see:
- A person with passion for the sport, not only caring about his/her training and results but who also wants to engage and spend time with the community
- A person who wants to give and deliver
- A person with vision for the future of our sport, who wants to grow together with the sport
- A team player, even though he/she takes part in individual competitions
- A leader, one who leads in both thoughts and deeds
- A human being, with emotion and empathy.
Is such a list of credentials too picky? Do we have these type of people in our community?
Yes, it is a tough requirement, because they are representing all of the athletes and coaches around the world. And of course we have these people, I see good potential in the eligible candidates among both athletes and coaches.
As is well known, UIPM has been a process of innovation for many years, embracing youth and new technology and especially accelerating to catch up in its 360 operations.
We are in the process of adopting a new Modern Pentathlon format designed for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, and the process has included athlete representatives from the Athletes Committee and those who took part in test events. UIPM also organised athlete meetings on different occasions since 2019 during major pentathlon competitions, and later we had the open conference call with all athletes who were free to register. Despite all that, we feel the involvement of athletes in our decision-making processes could be stronger, and the same applies to coaches.
Clearly, the vision of the UIPM leadership is not only to take care of current athletes but also create more possibilities and opportunities for future participants. That is why we really hope and believe that future representatives of both committees will be able to see the big picture and aim towards longer-term sports development.
While we are looking forward to complete the final qualification competition for the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Olympics, important community leaders for UIPM Sports will be born during this year’s World Championships.
I wish good luck to all the candidates. Whoever wins the election, we believe they will give their time and contribute to the sport in the best possible way.
To all other athletes and coaches, don’t forget to cast your votes in Cairo!