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The Motto Of The Olympic Games: A Lesson for the Athletes

August 06, 2012

The 2012 Olympic games are underway and as each athlete strives to stand on the podium, holding a medal while their flag is raised and their country’s anthem plays, it may lead one to think of all the symbolism that the Olympic games hold.

It’s easy to get caught up in the visuals. The rings, flags and medals that represent what the Olympic games are but what about the motto of the Olympics? What about the three words that have, for years, embodied what the games really stand for?

Citius. Altius. Fortius. This has been the motto of the Olympics for over 2500 years. As Bill Bowerman, the infamous coach of arguably the most famous running sensation ever, Steve Prefontaine once said, “Citius. Altius. Fortius. It means, Faster. Higher. Stronger… But it doesn’t mean faster, higher and stronger than whom you are competing against. Just Faster, Higher, Stronger.”

So, why has this motto been stamped as the defining three words that would embody what the world competition is all about? The motto reflects just what the games try to do every four years. Athletes strive their whole lives, to make it to this one competition. It’s the biggest platform any athlete will ever be able to compete on.

Faster. Higher. Stronger. This motto gives athletes freedom while pushing them to break records. It leads them to surpass the labels, times and scores that have once defined them.

If the athletes worry about competing with the people swimming, running or throwing against them, they may forget what the purpose of the event is all about. It is to test the limit of the human body. To show the world, that one man or woman can push harder than any person thought they could.

This motto works because it embodies what the games stand for. It also gives the participating athletes freedom to set their own goals, to reach their own achievements, and not settle for what the world has told them they could do.

Do you think this is a good motto? If you could come up with a new motto what would it be? We want to know how you label the Olympic games in just a few words!

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