July 12, 2024

Short path: Anna Seidel wants to return to the top of the world

Short path: Anna Seidel wants to return to the top of the world

Last Sunday, the plane departed for Anna Seidl and fellow coach Yangon Bin Jong for Canada, where the first World Cup of the season will be held in Montreal from Friday.

Despite the difficult months marked by surgeries, rehabilitation and lasting pain after a serious training fall, the 24-year-old’s anticipation for the new season from Dresden was unwavering: “I am very happy to have made the decision that we really drive. The training was intense and long. I Glad it’s starting now.” In April, the offending metal – the last remnant of the fall – was removed from the tibia and fibula bones. Since then I have been able to train without pain.

Seidel with thoughts of ending his career

The body is one thing, the head is another. An early exit from the Olympic quarter-finals over 1500 meters was present for the experienced athlete for a long time: “It was horrible and intense. I had never had such a feeling after a run that I wished I would wake up now. I felt myself like he was in the wrong movie I just thought, ‘It can’t be true, I’ve been working for this moment for the past four years and it’s happening to me.’

An experience that shows how close joy and sadness are in sport: “This sport is so cruel. It’s this moment and everything is decided there and then you have to wait four years again,” says Seidel, adding her thoughts on a possible career ending: “You’ve had so many good years, I don’t want to leave the stage like this now. I would like to have another year that feels a little easier. Just train well without pain, so the decision was clear to me, I can go on for another year.”

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Seasonally threatened by funding

The new season is imminent, but there were big question marks about the start in Montreal until a week before departure. The reason for this: The German Association of Speed ​​and Short-Track Skating (DESG) lacks the financial resources. “It has been clearly communicated that the association cannot spend any money,” Seidl said. Because the Federal Ministry (BMI) does not release the funds that were promised to the association for this year. Therefore, until December 31, 2022, there will be no funds for training measures, flights and hotels.

Thanks to a special solution, nothing stands in the way of Seidel’s start on Friday in Montreal and a week later in Salt Lake City (November 4-6). Seidel herself and her local club, Dresden’s snowboarding club, are providing funds for the World Cup trip. Precarious, as it remains unclear whether the funds will be released over the course of the season. Discussions between DESG and BMI are ongoing.

Season goals: the world’s top ten and European precious metals

Despite these predicaments, the goals of the successful Dresden native for this winter are clear. After a dip in motivation, Seidel returned with a solid third place over the 1000m at the Dutch Open in Heerenveen in October. The fact that she overcame a severe training injury in March 2021 so well both physically and mentally is also thanks to extensive work with sports psychologists and long conversations with friends and family outside of competitive sports.

Gdansk is a good place for Seidel

At the European Championships last year, which was also held in Gdansk, Seidel won three medals. She wants to build on such a high career this year and certainly has ambitions for medals in continental title fights. For these dreams to ever come true, conditions must be right. And they do so in Dresden, Germany’s only short-track federal base.

But competition never sleeps. It won’t be easy, especially because of the very strong Dutch women, but: “Actually, anything is possible if you keep training like this,” Seidl said confidently. Sports psychology should support this again. Visualizing a good run should help with future starts, which is why the short tracker tries to remember the recent European Championships in particular and absorb the details of their medal runs.

Seidel wants to start the season with fun in sports

Seidel will remain in the United States between the first two World Cups in Montreal and Salt Lake City and will prepare for further World Cup appearances with the US national team. She is grateful for such opportunities and international exchanges with the strong women on the US team.