Coubertin Quote for Oct, 21
To try to make athletics conform to a system of mandatory moderation is to chase after an illusion. Athletes need the ‘freedom of excess.’Share
When athletes achieve a level of excellence that earns them a place on their national Olympic team, there can be no holding back. The records books, Baron Pierre de Coubertin believed, were a summit of sport that had to be assaulted by each successive generation, a fresh crop of gifted young men and women trying to push the envelop of human performance to new heights. There could be no moderation imposed on those seeking glory. That was part of the Baron’s message on a radio broadcast from Geneva in August of 1935 titled “The Philosophical Foundations of Modern Olympism.” As he recalled the origins and meaning of the modern Olympic Games, he also remembered those critics of his early Olympic efforts who felt he had gone too far and that sport needed restraints to prevent the athletes from excess or injury. The Baron was a lifelong advocate of freedom for athletes everywhere.
“To try to make athletics conform to a system of mandatory moderation is to chase after an illusion. Athletes need the ‘freedom of excess.’ That is why their motto is Citius, altius, fortius: faster, higher, stronger, the motto of anyone who dares to try to beat a record!”