Lessons we can all take away from our favourite Winter Olympics eye candy
They glide across the ice with beaming smiles and interlaced hands. When it’s going well, everything is in sync. One movement is mirrored by another. Muscle meets grace.
When it’s not? They pick each other up, brush it off and keep smiling.
More than a few couples watching the Olympics at home are probably wishing their relationships were more like the ones they see on the ice. Some of those pairs are actually dating, some are just good friends, others are brother and sister — but all spend way more time together than most married couples. And yet when one of them falls and ruins the couple’s chance at a medal, they somehow refrain from showing the exasperation mere mortals feel when a partner loads the dishwasher wrong.
Of course, the brave faces they show to millions of fans can hide plenty of turmoil.
“It’s not always as harmonious behind the scenes as what they display on the ice,” said Dr. Mark Aoyagi, Director of Sport & Performance Psychology at the University of Denver. “I would say that they are couples and pairs just like the rest of us.”
And yet many of them stay together for years — 17 and counting for Olympic ice dancers Charlie White and Meryl Davis. So even if you’ll never master a triple axel, there are some lessons regular couples could learn from skating partnerships.
1. Have a common goal
“We have always had very similar mindsets and similar work ethics and we always feel like we’re trying to reach the same goals. So anytime we disagree, it’s always because we’re trying to get to the same place, so that makes it easy to get over,” White told TODAY about his partnership with Davis. “I think we both have very agreeable personalities and a lot of respect for one another so it never escalates.”
Aoyagi, who has worked with regular couples as well as USA Track and Field and professional teams, suggests thinking of your own romantic partnership as a team.
“The biggest thing with a team is to have a goal bigger than the team itself,” he said.