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Top Swimmer Seeks Mental and Physical Fitness

Posted July. 21, 2009 07:50,   


“Concentrate and concentrate…”

The country’s top swimmer is resorting to a number of methods to achieve peak physical condition for the World Swimming Championships in Rome.

Park has trained in the Italian capital since Friday, focusing on the men’s 200, 400 and 1,500 meter freestyle. He asked his sponsor SK Telecom to send bottled water because he felt uncomfortable with the taste of the Italian variety.

The company quickly sent four boxes each containing 20 bottles of bottled water.

Park also complained about the food provided by the tournament organizers, and ate boxed meals provided by a Korean restaurant in Rome. He said his stomach feels most comfortable when he eats Korean food, saying he can win different medals depending on how he controls his condition at the last minute.

To keep Park mentally stable and sharp, a Korean mental therapist who helped him win the men’s 400-meter freestyle at last year’s Beijing Olympics is accompanying him again. “An anaconda almost chocked me to death in a dream. But a Korean snake came to my rescue…” Park said.

Public expectations on him have heightened since he won Korea’s first swimming Olympic gold in Beijing last year.

A SK source said, “Park seems to have regained mental stability just by having the spiritual therapist accompanying him, just like when he won the gold medal last year. We have no choice but to mobilize all measures available to ensure Park is in peak condition.”