Gaining a competitive edge

Striving selfishly to be the very best and working on weaknesses rather than strengths can separate the good from the great on the sporting field and in other areas of life.

That was the message from a stellar line-up of elite athletes, sport scientists, and sport administrators exploring the role of competition in sport on 6 July at the latest Game Changers event, The Competitive Edge.

Held to align with VU’s role in hosting the recent Southern University Games, the event was a robust discussion moderated by Kate Roffey, Chair of the Enterprise Maribyrnong Committee and director of Melbourne University Sport.

The panellists were:

  • Bianca Chatfield, former captain of Melbourne Vixens netball team and a Commonwealth Games Gold and Silver medallist;
  • Brea Roadley, international record-breaking marathon kayaker and a VU student currently studying a double degree;
  • Professor Damian Farrow, researcher at VU's Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL)
  • Don Knapp, CEO of Australian University Sport.

Mr Knapp, a former professional baseball player in the US, said there was no “cookie cutter methods for success.” But he acknowledged that competing at sport while at university was a proven way for an individual to succeed in other areas of life by developing strong morals, mindset, and work ethic.

He pointed out that student-athletes had higher levels of employability and graduation rates, and that more than half of Australia’s current Olympic team had been student-athletes at university.

The next Game Changers event, Collaboration & Incubators, will be held on Wednesday 10 August 2016 at VU at MetroWest.

It will feature Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, in conversation with business journalist Alan Kohler.

The Game Changers series is an initiative of Victoria University and Maribyrnong City Council to foster participation and involvement of the community in topical and important ideas.

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