British Gymnast Wants to Learn from Japanese

November 15, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. hinder [HIN-der] (v.) – to cause difficulty
Example: His lack of confidence hinders him from winning the competition.

2. emulate [EM-yuh-leyt] (v.) – to imitate something or someone
Example: The young athlete emulates his idol who is a champion gymnast.

3. confident [KON-fi-duh nt] (adj.) – having total certainty that something will happen
Example: The athlete is confident that he would win the competition due to his amazing performance.

4. ultimate [UHL-tuh-mit] (adj.) – highest or final form
Example: The gymnast’s ultimate goal is to win a title for the World Championships.

5. all-around [AWL-uh-round] (adj.) – having the ability to do different things
Example: The all-around gymnast won a medal from each of the category.


Read the text below.
Max Whitlock, a 20-year-old British gymnast, expressed his desire to learn from the Japanese gymnasts in order to finally become a world champion.

Whitlock has won two Olympic bronze medals in last year’s World Gymnastics. One of the two medals was from the team event while the other is from the pommel horse. This year, he won his first World Championship silver medal from the pommel horse.

During the 2013 World Championships, Kohei Kameyama of Japan hindered Whitlock in claiming the pommel horse title. Aside from Kameyama, other Japanese gymnasts have been recently achieving much in gymnastics ever since Yukio Endo started leading the team.

Because of their achievements, Whitlock expressed his admiration and intention to learn from Japanese gymnasts. He said that they motivate him to work harder to improve his skills. According to him, the style of the Japanese stands out among the gymnasts of the world.

Whitlock also admire how Japanese gymnasts maintain calmness in their moves and their techniques. In addition, they have a good kind of attitude towards the sports, which he wants to emulate.

When asked about his future plans, Whitlock said that he wants to try a bigger routine using the things he learned from his Japanese competitors. He also hopes to be more confident and to be able to prepare well for bigger competitions.

The British gymnast also stressed that his ultimate goal is to gain more gymnastic experiences. Whitlock is now aiming for the gold medal for pommel horse and to soon be an all-around gymnast while maintaining his rising rank in the world of gymnastics.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Do you think learning techniques from competitors is a good strategy? Why do you say so?
·         How else do you think Whitlock can achieve his goals?

Discussion B

·         Why do you think competitions are important for athletes? Explain.
·         Do you agree that winning a competition is indeed a valuable achievement? Why or why not?


November 15, 2013