Believe In Yourself, Jumper - Chelsea Hammond

Chanice Porter and Tissanna Hickling can be medal contenders at the Olympics and the World Championships if they are consistent and if they believe in themselves. That's the recipe for success outlined by 2008 Olympic bronze medallist Chelsea Hammond. 


Porter placed eighth at the World Championship last year, with Pan-American Games bronze medallist Hickling learning much from her first global meet. Drawing from her own experiences as an athlete and a community coach, Hammond recently asserted, "the jumpers who are consistent are the ones who are most successful and what I learnt is that I have to actually know what I did to jump far and not just today I happened to do it. So I think that's the biggest key and the biggest thing that any of the athletes I work with is that you have to learn your event. You have to understand what did you do why you jumped further because it's something that we're doing, something we're mentally thinking of, or something we're physically doing that causes us to go further than something else. So that's one thing."

By her own admission, Hammond did not achieve that threshold until she turned professional and joined a camp coached by Tom Tellez, whose top pupils including Carl Lewis, the four-time Olympic long jump winner and Willie Banks, once the triple jump world record holder. 

Recalling her approach to the 2008 Olympics, she listed confidence as another important ingredient. "In my head, I said, I want to win a medal. That's what I had my mind set on. I'm sure many people didn't think I was going to get a medal but that's what I thought", she extended.

Her personal best of 6.79 metres has her placed fourth on the all-time performance list.

To hammer the point home, Jamaica's only Olympic women's jump medallist added, "so I think that you need to, one, believe in yourself, believe in your coach, believe in your training, that you can produce what you need to be great because all of those athletes are great, all of them are great, but it now turns from your physical to your mental. That's what makes the difference." 

Now 37, the New York bred Jamaican is impressed by the current crew of jumpers. "I think it speaks volumes just as far as the talent that we show in the jumps, and as you see with our triple jumpers and our long jumpers, there's a lot of talent there", she reasoned.


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