SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) — As all eyes are turning to London to watch the Olympic Games on Friday, July 27, many Olympians are citing religion as the driving force for their success in the world tournament.
"I think God has a big role to play in sporting activities especially sometimes when you're injured or things aren't going as well as expected,” Jehue Gordon, a Trinidadian track and field athlete, told BBC Sport.
“I think he's the one that can keep you on the righteous path," said Gordon, who aspires to win the gold medal in the 400m hurdle race at London Olympics.
Hijab to Make History in London Olympics
Sports in ISLAM (Special Pages)
Gordon won the gold medal of CARIFTA Games in 2009.
He also set a world-age best and senior national record of 48.66 seconds in the heats at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics.
US gymnast Shawn Johnson also opines that religion is the driving force for success in the sport field.
"My religion and faith play a huge part, if not the biggest part, in my career,” says the retired gymnast.
“It gives me the strength and stability to believe in what I'm doing and see my dreams and goals through.
“It gives me meaning which is more than a medal or score could ever do for me. I pray before every meet and sometimes before every routine."
The Olympic Games are set to open in London on Friday, July 27, and run through August 12.
For Jonathan Edwards, Olympic gold medalist in the triple jump, religion is the key to success.
"My faith was pivotal to my success,” Jonathan Edwards, a former British Olympian, told BBC Sport.
“Believing in something beyond the self can have a hugely beneficial psychological impact, even if the belief is fallacious.”
A devout Christian, Edwards held the world record in triple jumping since 1995.
Due to his strong Christian beliefs, he initially refused to compete on Sundays, but eventually decided to do so in 1993.
This decision proved timely, since the qualifying round at that year's World Championships took place on a Sunday.
“It (religion) provided a profound sense of reassurance because I took the view that the result was in God's hands and that God was on my side,” he said.
“It enabled me to block out doubt before I was due to jump."—www.shafaqna.com/english
Source: On Islam