Gerd Kanter and Emma Terho. Photo: Karli Saul/EOK
The athletes’ forum is an event created by athletes for athletes, where participants can draw inspiration from the success stories of others and learn from the experience of top foreign athletes. The main speaker of the event was Emma Terho, chairwoman of the Athletes’ Commission of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), who had a thorough discussion with Gerd Kanter, the chairman of the Athletes' Commission of the Estonian Olympic Committee (EOC).
“Athletes can be divided into two groups: some are only interested in things that directly concern their careers, and others want to see bigger changes. With the help of the athletes’ forum, we can involve our athletes and members of Team Estonia, in our activities, and introduce important topics to them. We have a good relationship with the Athletes’ Commission of the IOC, and I am glad that we had an opportunity to listen to the thoughts of Emma Terho, who deals with important issues in the IOC. I hope that our athletes were inspired by her presentation,” said Beijing Olympic champion Kanter.
Terho praised the initiative of the Athletes’ Commission of EOC in organising the athletes’ forum. “This is exactly the kind of positive approach that we at IOC expect when communicating with athletes. I understand that it is a serious challenge to get all athletes together in one place, but it is important that they carry our message further to others. Today's event was outstanding, there were good discussions held and ideas expressed about how we could cooperate in the future,” said Terho, who won bronze with the Finnish women's ice hockey team at the 1998 Nagano and 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games.
In addition, listeners drew inspiration from success stories of wrestler Epp Mäe, former professional cyclists Tanel Kangert and Sander Maasing, former ski jumper Kaarel Nurmsalu, and they had an opportunity to listen to sports psychologist Snežana Stoljarova and sports journalist Ott Järvela. Throughout the day, those interested could take part in private 20-minute mini-coaching sessions.
The goal of the Athletes’ Commission of EOC is to represent the interests of athletes and submit their views and recommendations to EOC. The Commission is actively involved in protecting the rights of athletes in the spirit of fair play, and in initiating projects aimed at them.