Running with the Olympic Blade Runner: Oscar Pistorius in London 2012


The biggest battle presenters face is the battle to push their comfort zones as speakers

by Peter Watts

Speaking to larger audiences, to more challenging audiences, or even taking those first few steps to speak at all can feel like enormous leaps. Sometimes it can feel like too big a leap, and we don’t even try, or we give up at the first hurdle.

Last night, yet again watching the Olympics on a ceiling-mounted restaurant television, I saw a man on prosthetic legs position himself into the starting blocks for the Men’s 400 meters at the London Olympics.

The man’s name is Oscar Petronius. He’s a South African athlete known as “The Blade Runner”, and when he competed last night, he made history as the first double-amputee to take part in the Games.

Reading his accomplishments in this morning’s press, I was struck by the words to which Oscar Pistorius attributes his strength:

“A loser isn’t the person that gets involved and comes last, but it’s the person that doesn’t get involved in the first place.”

Apply those words to public speaking. An incredibly good fit aren’t they. How many opportunities do we lose because we don’t get involved in the first place.

Here are a few web-links with coverage about Oscar Petronius, the one-man inspiration factory.

Las Vegas Review

New York Times

Huffington Post

The Guardian 

Take a moment to read one of them. Then identify a challenge that you’ve been wanting to take on, but previously hadn’t dared to.

How do you start down the road to that race, and run with The BladeRunner?

Comments

  1. Even though this is a great story there are still question marks. People want to believe it and that’s great. But I don’t know if I can get over the fact that he could have an unfair advantage. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the years to come and if there are others like Pistorius who will have to overcome the same hurdles. Also, you think you could take a look at my latest post because I would love to hear your opinion http://chrisross91.wordpress.com/2012/08/05/oscar-pistorius-should-not-be-racing/

    • Thanks for visiting the blog Chris. I’ve just been across to your article, and wow! you certainly make an excellent counter-argument. What do you think? Grey-zone?

  2. Hey Peter! Thanks for sharing the scoop on such an inspiring young man! I hadn’t seen this! Take care, Laura

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