Kevin Mayer, double decathlon world champion: “We want to show that it’s not an elitist sport” – Nouvelle-Calédonie la 1ère

The decathlon world record holder is in New Caledonia to participate in the first Track’NC Games, of which he is the sponsor. This key figure in athletics is delighted to share his passion.

He is one of the most talented French athletes of his generation. Double decathlon world champion, world record holder in his discipline, Kevin Mayer has settled in New Caledonia. The athlete sponsors the Track’NC Games, an athletics meeting whose first edition takes place in Noumea. He was the guest of the television news on Tuesday December 6.

NC the 1st: With this sporting challenge of Track’NC Games is a party organized around you on Wednesday, December 7th. What does this type of meeting bring you?

Kevin Mayer: It gives me pleasure because I love sharing my sport. Athletics is a little-known sport, in mainland France and on the islands, and we try to promote it through these events, which are available to everyone. We want to show that it’s not an elitist sport. It is above all a sport in which we take a lot of pleasure. This is the main goal of this Wednesday: that everyone has the banana at the end of the day.

Why is the decathlon considered an extremely difficult discipline?

There are three jumps, three throws and four runs that are done over two days. It is a sprint and resistance test. It’s difficult but it’s still affordable at any level. Of course, you won’t be able to score 9000 points by snapping your fingers, but the pleasure and pride that comes out of it are available at all levels.

It is easy to imagine that the body is ultra-solicited in these circumstances. How do you prepare to perform in such different exercises?

This is the whole difficulty of the decathlon. A lifetime would not be enough to master these ten tests. Above all, we try to progress as quickly as possible from a technical point of view while avoiding injuries because we cannot practice ten times more than the specialists in an event.

It seems that you use meditation, hypnosis and acupuncture a lot to prevent injuries.

Injuries don’t just come from shocks. They also come from tension and stress. Being relaxed and in tune with yourself is part of the path to not being hurt.

How do you maintain the pleasure after ten years of competition?

The best way to be happy in life is to try many things until you find your passion. I am lucky to have found it, and to have made this passion my job. I have never been reluctant to go to a stadium because I love it. There are of course a lot of things that you don’t see: bodybuilding, care, obligations… But when I’m in an athletics stadium, I’m very happy because that’s quite simply what I like to do. When I was young, I immediately knew that the decathlon was what I needed after trying the discipline.

Some children hope to beat you this Wednesday. Did you also develop this winning spirit very early on?

I do not really know. I think I was a winner, but I gradually realized that winning is not the most important thing. Above all, you have to use adversity to become stronger yourself. Today, this is what I remember above all. Gradually, we realize that it is more a fight against oneself than against others.

This Wednesday, children will inevitably ask you for your secret to reaching the top level. How will you answer them?

If they ask me this question, I will answer them that you have to find what gives enough pleasure to be able to practice it for many hours without it seeming long. The more fun you have, the shorter the time seems. And the more hours we practice, the stronger we are. Choosing the right area in which you are competent allows you to define how far you will go later.

No Frenchman has ever been a triple world champion in athletics. Is this your goal?

There are many goals. It is true that the three stars in athletics have never been achieved in France. The Paris Olympic Games are perhaps the biggest meeting of my life so the next two years are going to be very busy and synonymous with a lot of pressure. We will have to do a lot of meditation (laughs).

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Kevin Mayer, double decathlon world champion: “We want to show that it’s not an elitist sport” – Nouvelle-Calédonie la 1ère

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