The children of a Prague primary school experienced an exceptional PE lesson. As part of the Sazka Olympic Multi-Battle – Training with Olympians project, they were visited by successful Czech athletes who came to play sports with them as part of their lessons. They were joined by runner Kristiina Mäki, wrestler Adéla Hanzlíčková, pentathlete David Svoboda, as well as a great sports lover, singer Mirai Navrátil.
Mirai is not a professional athlete, but he spends almost all of his free time playing sports. “I enjoy racket sports the most. When I was younger, I played tennis competitively and spent a lot of time on the courts. Recently I have been struck by the trend of paddle tennis, but not many people here know it yet,” revealed the musician from Beskydy, who also likes to hike in the mountains often. “In 2020, when it was covid and there was nothing else to do, I even took the plunge and did the Beskydy Seven race, which is 101 kilometres.”
During the two hours of gym class, various dynamic and fun games were played, such as tails, push-ups and pedal. “I have a lot of funny memories of PE. For example, one time when I was in 3rd grade, I was really excited about something and was jumping around the gym like crazy. I don’t even know what I was so happy about, but I fell on my mouth and tore it open. Then they stitched it up because my mouth was literally from ear to ear. I don’t know how that’s possible, but it happened,” Mirai recalled with a smile.
The aim of the Sazka Olympic Multiathlon project is to bring a more entertaining form of exercise to the often less popular PE classes and thus motivate children to make sport a natural part of their lives. “I personally enjoyed scoring goals, getting fifteens. I wasn’t so much motivated by winning a trophy or some kind of prize, but just the pure, simple joy of winning and playing,” noted Mirai, who is currently touring the biggest hockey arenas across the country with his band, and another O2 arena.
This year, long-distance runner Kristiina Mäki, freestyle wrestler Adéla Hanzlíčková and pentathlete David Svoboda also came to support the school children in their sporting endeavours. “Gymnastics has always been my least favourite subject, and that is why I support the Sazka Olympic All-Around project. I would like it to be given the same importance as other subjects in schools, because especially in the first grade, movement and sport play an important role in a child’s development,” says London Olympic gold medallist David Svoboda.
Training with Olympians is a popular activity that is awarded each year to two primary schools from each region involved in the Sazka Olympic Multiathlon project, which was created several years ago in cooperation between Sazka and the Czech Olympic Committee. In the past, children in schools have been visited by speed canoeist Josef Dostál, figure skater Tomáš Verner, table tennis player Iveta Vacenovská, Olympic medallist Šárka Kašpárková and many others. More information about the project at: http://www.sazkaolympijskyviceboj.cz/.