TAIPEI (Taiwan News)--One might wonder what Taiwan’s first two-time Olympic gold medalist Hsu Shu-ching (許淑淨) has been doing after she won Taiwan’s only gold medal at the Olympics Games in Rio de Janeiro, lifting a total of 212kg in the women’s 53kg group. The answer is that she has been training for her next goal: the Taipei 2017 Summer Universiade in August.
For an Olympic champion, the Universiade challenge should be a walk in the park, right? Hsu, who is also a spokesperson of the Taipei Universiade, says that, in fact, it’s harder to win a weightlifting medal at many non-Olympic international competitions because Olympic participation is governed by a quota system. According to the Olympic weightlifting rules, one country/area can only select a total of four female athletes to compete, but each weight division will accept just two competitors at most. That means that Olympic weightlifters will have fewer opponents, and therefore their chances of winning will increase, according to Hsu.
Without adopting such kind of quota systems, many other international competitions, with so many qualified competitors in each division, are actually more competitive, she said. .
Hsu is now a doctoral student at the National Taiwan Sport University. She said she was hoping to bring more glory at the Taipei Universiade in August. After having competed all over the world, she said that she had been impressed by the loud and enthusiastic support athletes always received from their compatriots at competitions overseas.
As a spokesperson for the Universiade, she urged everyone to come and cheer on home athletes and give them the home-field advantage, so that they will go all out for Taiwan when they face their opponents.
Hsu Shu-ching (left) and her coach Tsai Wen-yee (photo from Wikimedia Commons)
Hsu keeps her training regimen going all year round. At the National Sports Training Center in Zuoying, Kaohsiung, she works with coach Tsai Wen-yee (蔡溫義), an Olympic bronze medalist in weightlifting, almost every day.
As for what was on her mind when she was going for a big lift, she said, “When I’m up there, I am actually thinking of nothing; I just empty my head and certainly don’t care about how much my opponents can lift. I only ask myself to repeat what I’ve done in training. I believe in my coach and in myself – that’s all that matters.”
Being thrust into the limelight after the two Olympic wins, Hsu said she hoped she can use her “little influence” to promote the Olympic spirit in Taiwan and get more people involved in physical activities.