Qing Liang has been in the archery scene for a while but recently transitioned to foray into coaching. In his role as the archery coach, the ASEAN Para Games 2020 will represent his first major games assignment as a coach.
How long have you been a coach and how did you start?
Officially, it’s been 1 year, but I have been advising my closer archery friends on shooting techniques and technical tuning for the past 2 years. I started coaching as I wanted to help more archers reach a higher level. Also when I was shooting competitively, I encountered some problems in my own shooting and have tried many different ways to tackle it. So I believe the experiences I have accumulated over the years will be able to help many archers.
Can you describe your relationship with the athletes?
I always aim to maintain an open and friendly relationship with my athletes. I believe in a closely bonded team, as this will ensure communication and improve team morale. But we also need to know when is the right time to train hard and play hard.
How is coaching different from playing the sport?
It is definitely very different. Coaches and athletes focuses on different issues. Coaches need to ensure that the athlete is able to perform at their expected level during competition in terms of well-being and skills, while the athletes’ job is to focus on what they have been training for.
How do you motivate the athletes? And yourself?
I would provide words of encouragement to my athletes and never be negative in front of them regardless of any situation. My motivation derives from being able to help athletes in achieving and performing at their highest level, which I really enjoy.
Goals for upcoming APG 2020?
To be able to perform the same or better than in training.
Our theme for the upcoming year is #Defylimits. Can you share how your athletes defy their limits?
Being a sportsperson in Singapore, we do have to continuously challenge the societal perception that the public has about being an athlete. For this, I feel that they do need to have the confidence and courage to continue with their passion.
What’s an important lesson you learnt from being a coach?
Never give up on athletes!
What do you hope for the future of para-sports in Singapore?
Since 2015 there has been an increase of exposure and a turning point in the future of para sports. This has also lead to an increase in the participation of para sports from all walks of life. I am hoping that in the future there would be more integration of able body sports and para sports that would drive performance and continuity.
What advice would you give to newcomers in para-sports?
Be patient and commit to your training. You will get there eventually.