In the heart of Jeonbuk, South Korea, the Asia Pacific Masters Games (APMG) 2023 witnessed the remarkable achievements of athletes from around the world. Among them, Nick Hope of Great Britain emerged as a true star in the swimming arena.
With an impressive performance and a positive outlook on the importance of sports, Hope showcased his skills, winning four well-deserved medals. Beyond the medals, however, he emphasised the incredible experience of camaraderie, cultural exchange, and personal growth that such events offer.
Unveiling the Experience
Having previously visited South Korea on multiple occasions, Nick Hope expressed his gratitude for finally getting the opportunity to compete in this vibrant country. Delighted with the overall experience, Hope highlighted the fantastic atmosphere, unwavering support from fellow athletes, and the joyful camaraderie shared among participants. He emphasised that it is this incredible spirit, in addition to the fierce competition, that makes events like the APMG so enriching and memorable. Encouraging others to take part, Hope highlighted the immense value of participating in such gatherings.
“The amazing atmosphere, spirit, and support from everyone, as well as the competition, is brilliant. That’s why I would encourage everyone to compete in events like this.”
The Power of Sport
For Hope, sports hold immense significance, both physically and mentally. Recognising that everyone faces various stresses in life, he believes that engaging in sports helps alleviate tension and keeps individuals sharp in all aspects of life. Sharing his personal journey, Hope credits swimming for helping him manage his emotions effectively. After rediscovering his passion for the sport during the World Championships, he witnessed firsthand the spirit of camaraderie, the desire to excel, and the opportunity to connect with individuals from diverse backgrounds. According to Hope, participating in competitions like the APMG offers a chance to not only compete but also to share experiences, embrace different cultures, and build lifelong memories.
“I’ve seen the spirit there is in this sport. We all want to compete, and we all want to do well, but we also want to share experiences, meet different people, and experience different cultures. You get so much of that through competitions like this.”
Embracing the Nerves
Despite his remarkable achievements, Hope admits that nerves always play a role before each race. However, he views this as a positive sign, as it demonstrates his dedication and the importance he attaches to doing his best. Once he dives into the water and immerses himself in the race, all the nerves are replaced by sheer enjoyment and the reminder of why he loves the sport. Hope believes that nerves keep athletes engaged and passionate, serving as a catalyst for their continued growth and success.
The Ageless Spirit
Hope’s observations go beyond his own experience, as he highlights the awe-inspiring performances of athletes in their golden years. He praises the incredible achievements of individuals in their 70s and 80s, who not only participate but also excel in a wide range of sports. Witnessing their infectious enthusiasm and radiant smiles, Hope emphasizes the importance of staying fit, healthy, and engaged in activities that bring joy. Such remarkable feats showcase the power of sports to keep individuals young at heart, fostering lifelong fitness, and offering opportunities to connect with new people.
“It’s incredible because it keeps people fit, it keeps people healthy, and you can see from the smiles on their faces what it means to them to still be active, competing and meeting new people.’
Before concluding the interview, Hope expresses his heartfelt gratitude to everyone involved in organizing the APMG 2023. His appreciation extends beyond winning medals; he cherishes the inclusive nature of such events, which go beyond mere competition and foster lifelong connections.
“I want to say a huge thank you everyone that has participated and helped to put this event together. The volunteers have been phenomenal. Everyone has been so friendly and helpful. They have made this an incredible experience for us all. Yes, I’m happy to win medals but it is about so much more than that.”
Nick Hope’s exceptional performance at the Asia Pacific Masters Games 2023 is a testament to his dedication and love for swimming.