Olympic swimmer Chantal Van Landeghem helping to calm nerves at Canada Summer Games
BIRDS HILL PROVINCIAL PARK, Man. — As an Olympian, Chantal Van Landeghem knows how to deal with pressure. But now the Winnipegger can handle it even better. On top of being one of Canada’s top swimmers, Van Landeghem is also a sport psychology student.
The Canada Summer Games alum has returned to the multi-sport event to work with Manitoba’s athletes.
“High performance sports, there’s always ups and downs,” Van Landeghem said.
“I’m talking with the competitors, helping them deal with nerves and pressure.”
For the first time in Canada Summer Games history, athletes have access to mental health services. More than 15 volunteer psychologists have spent the last two weeks attending as many events as possible to help ease athletes’ stress levels.
“It’s very normal to experience anxiety when you’re going to the biggest race of your life,” Canada Summer Games chief psychologist Dr. Adrienne Leslie-Toogood said. “That’s the way the brain is built. So we’re helping to normalize that and develop tools to manage that.”
Sport support to make the distractions disappear.
“I find it’s part of preparation that can sometimes be overlooked a little bit,” Van Landeghem said. “It’s been so crucial for me and so helpful getting me where I am today.”
© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.