Ron Skarin's first Ready, Set, Gold! school visit was with more than 150 students from Alessandro Elementary School. Skarin spoke with 4th, 5th and 6th grade students about the history of the Olympics and the fundamentals of goal setting.
From teaching the students about the Olympic motto of "Citius, Altius, Fortius" and the meaning of the colors of the Olympic rings, Skarin taught the students about how the Olympic Movement is a truly international movement that welcomes all countries of the world.
Skarin's personal road to the Olympics was based off the fact that he loved cycling and found a passion in it at an early age. He shared the story about how he earned his first bicycle and how he got into racing by first competing against friends and then later entering cycling competitions.
Skarin first learned about the Olympics through a friend that he rode with who had a gold ring with the Olympic rings on it. He asked him where it was from and, from there, Skarin learned about the Olympics and made it a personal mission to make an Olympic team.
He told the students that whether it's going to the Olympics or accomplishing any type of goal, you need to have the following fundamentals in place:
Excellence - Do your best on the field or in your professional life. The important thing is not winning but being a part of the process.
Respect - Have respect for yourself, your body, for other people, and respect the rules and regulations for your sport and the environment in which you compete.
Friendship - Friendship is the heart of it all. It encourages us to see sport as an instrument for mutual understanding between individuals, and between people all over the world.
Skarin also talked about the importance of physical activity. Exercise makes you feel good about yourself and improves brain function. Students can start by making small changes in their everyday life. For example, instead of getting dropped off at school, they can also wake up earlier and walk/bike to school if they live a short distance away. Students can also go for walks after dinner with their family, and instead of playing video games, they can choose to play outside and be active.
Skarin ended his first visit by reminding students that the world is their playground and they shouldn't miss it be staying inside!