Media training important for Olympians

21 July 2012
Media training is something high performance athletes should undertake so they can maximise their own reputations and that of their sports when in-front of the World’s TV cameras. It will be plain to see who is prepared for the media onslaught when the Olympics get into full swing. Those who have been through media training will appear conversational with reporters, and not be afraid to express their true feelings about their performance. This is what people want to see. But many others who have never experienced media training will hide their emotions, appear ill at ease and not warm to the camera. These are the ones who will do little to improve their personal reputations and those of their sports. They will probably come across as cold and trot out some standard cliché rather than share their true thoughts. Some countries make sure their athletes are prepared for the media at big events such as the Olympics. But it’s one thing to offer a few tips. The only way to make sure they know exactly how to perform in front of the media is to participate in a media training session where real mock interviews are staged and critiqued. That’s because learning how to master media interviews is like riding a bike. You can be given any number of tips or read as many books as you like. But until you get on the bike and try to ride it, you will never learn. Sporting bodies fail to grasp the importance of media training for their stars. If viewers bond with the athlete, they will take a greater interest in the sport and this can only be good for the sporting organisation. It's also great for the athlete's personal marketability for a career after sport.

Written by

Pete is a leading New Zealand media trainer and regular blogger for his company, Media Training NZ . He has helped leaders from all sectors of society communicate with the media and other stakeholders. Pete is a former daily newspaper reporter and press secretary in the New Zealand government. From these roles, he understands the media process from both sides of the camera.

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