Lassens at Games to motivate athletes

Unfortunately for many of the athletes competing at the Canada Summer Games over the last two weeks, their trip to PEI will mark the highest level of sport they will achieve.

Charlottetown, PEI

Unfortunately for many of the athletes competing at the Canada Summer Games over the last two weeks, their trip to PEI will mark the highest level of sport they will achieve. But for those with the drive to

go farther, they’re getting a leg up from past Canada Games athletes thanks to AthletesCAN.

“AthletesCAN is the voice of all national team members from the Olympics, Paralympics, Commonwealth, PanAm and from aboriginal sports circles,” said Moira Lassen, AthletesCAN executive director and

Whitehorse resident. “It started in 1992 and it has grown into a world-class organization and it’s the first one in the world run by athletes for athletes.

“Its purpose is to build leaders – athlete leaders. We know that athletes have a powerful voice as role models or in influencing policy changes.”

Since the start of the Games, a handful of past-Games participants who continued to excel in their sports, including some who went on to the Olympics and world championships, attended team meetings,

focus groups and presented medals to athletes. They also gave motivational speeches outlining their journey from beginner to world-class athlete, “hopefully motivating the people in the audience to keep

going, to stay involved,” said Lassen.

“That’s when the athletes get quite excited: being presented a medal by an Olympian is a fantastic thing.”

Included in the list of accomplished athletes was Whitehorse’s very own Jeane Lassen, who competed in weightlifting at the Beijing Olympics a year ago finishing eighth. Jeane did not win a medal at the

Canada Games, but had a story of persistence to share.

“I went to the Canada Games in 1995 and 13 years later I went to the Olympics, so I want to explain to athletes that it can be a long road, but that’s not a bad thing,” said Jeane. “(The Games) are a part of a

journey, not a destination.”

Jeane’s message is grounded in the theory that talent is a derivative of effort, not inborn.

“I want athletes to understand that being a high-level athlete – it isn’t luck at all what determines who goes on further and who’s going to stay at this level,” said Jeane.

“The choices you have to make to be a good athlete are the important parts. Simple choices like going to bed at a decent time, not going out and partying.

“In the end, what matters most is that you put in the time.”

Working with young talent is nothing new to Jeane, who helps Yukon athletes reach the next level with her business, School of Hard Knocks

“I tell the athletes that the talent is in the choices,” said Jeane. “You can be born with all the athletic ability in the world, but if you don’t use it, or don’t make the right choices, you’re not going to go

anywhere.”

Just over a week ago, Jeane competed in Quebec in a meet that “didn’t go that well at all,” she said.

“I learned from it even though it was a bad experience – there’s always something to draw from it.”

Dauntless, Jeane still has every intention of making the Canadian team for the 1012 Olympic Games in London, but she most do a little juggling between training and continuing her work with Hard Knocks.

“I have to figure out what that’s going to look like because I want to stay in the Yukon and continue working with other athletes,” she said. “It is difficult being in the gym all day (working with other athletes)

and trying to get in some training of my own.

“So I have to figure out how to remain an elite athlete while still being a coach at the same time.”

Jeane will be competing at the World Championships in South Korea in November, but she hopes to get another competition under her belt leading up to the Worlds.

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Crystal Schick/Yukon News
Calvin Delwisch poses for a photo inside his DIY sauna at Marsh Lake on Feb. 18.
Yukoners turning up the heat with unique DIY sauna builds

Do-it-yourselfers say a sauna built with salvaged materials is a great winter project

d
Wyatt’s World

Wyatt’s World for March 5, 2021.

g
Yukonomist: School competition ramps up in the Yukon

It’s common to see an upstart automaker trying to grab share from… Continue reading

The Yukon government responded to a petition calling the SCAN Act “draconian” on Feb. 19. (Yukon News file)
Yukon government accuses SCAN petitioner of mischaracterizing her eviction

A response to the Jan. 7 petition was filed to court on Feb. 19

City councillor Samson Hartland in Whitehorse on Dec. 3, 2018. Hartland has announced his plans to run for mayor in the Oct. 21 municipal election. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Councillor sets sights on mayor’s chair

Hartland declares election plans

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley receives his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Public Health Nurse Angie Bartelen at the Yukon Convention Centre Clinic in Whitehorse on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
State of emergency extended for another 90 days

“Now we’re in a situation where we see the finish line.”

The Yukon government says it is working towards finding a solution for Dawson area miners who may be impacted by City of Dawson plans and regulations. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Miner expresses frustration over town plan

Designation of claims changed to future planning

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been postponed indefinitely. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
2022 Arctic Winter Games postponed indefinitely

Wood Buffalo, Alta., Host Society committed to rescheduling at a later date

Housing construction continues in the Whistle Bend subdivision in Whitehorse on Oct. 29, 2020. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon Bureau of Statistics reports rising rents for Yukoners, falling revenues for businesses

The bureau has published several reports on the rental market and businesses affected by COVID-19

Crews work to clear the South Klondike Highway after an avalanche earlier this week. (Submitted)
South Klondike Highway remains closed due to avalanches

Yukon Avalanche Association recommending backcountry recreators remain vigilant

RCMP Online Crime Reporting website in Whitehorse on March 5. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Whitehorse RCMP launch online crime reporting

Both a website and Whitehorse RCMP app are now available

A man walks passed the polling place sign at city hall in Whitehorse on Oct. 18, 2018. The City of Whitehorse is preparing for a pandemic-era election this October with a number of measures proposed to address COVID-19 restrictions. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City gets set for Oct. 21 municipal election

Elections procedures bylaw comes forward

A rendering of the Normandy Manor seniors housing facility. (Photo courtesy KBC Developments)
Work on seniors housing project moves forward

Funding announced for Normandy Manor

Most Read