Three aims for four seasons: Filip Rodzik

The next Paralympic Games seem far away but Poland’s Filip Rodzik has already booked a few goals into his road to Tokyo calendar. 09 May 2017
Filip Rodzik

Filip Rodzik made his Paralympic debut at the Beijing 2008 Games.

ⒸGetty Images
By Rebecca Schaefer | For the IPC

“Fortunately, we tend to learn the most from our mistakes.”

He had hoped for a shot at the podium but ended up not making the final in any event: 2013 European champion in the P1 (10m air pistol SH1), Filip Rodzik, experienced a disappointing stint at the Paralympic Games in Rio last year.

Severe health problems, including spasms and spine issues, resulted in the Polish pistol shooter’s poor performance at his second Paralympic Games.

But after having had a couple of months to process yet another difficult period during his shooting career, Rodzik, who had already missed the London 2012 Paralympic Games due to an elbow injury, is ready to move on.

“Fortunately, we tend to learn the most from our mistakes,” Rodzik said. “That is why I adapted my training routine to try to ensure that problems like the ones I experienced in Rio will not occur again in the future. And at the moment, I am hopeful that I am doing everything I can to ensure they will not.”

Full body exercises, particularly ones that target the strength in his spine and muscles, as well as a general focus on increasing his overall health now take up much more of the 36-year-old’s training time.

Rodzik has now set new goals for himself for the next four seasons:

1. My first goal is to compete in as many finals as possible within this Paralympic cycle. Reaching the finals in both of my events at the World Shooting Para Sport Grand Prix in Szczecin, Poland [Rodzik finished in seventh and fifth place], was a good start to this endeavour. But on top of reaching more finals, I also want to fight for as many podium places as possible in the future.

2. One year from now at around this time, I want to achieve my second goal, which is to secure a place for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics during the 2018 World Shooting Para Sport Championships in Cheongju, South Korea.

3. Last but not least, my third and final goal is to be able to compete in the Tokyo 2020 finals in the P1 and the P4. I want to win at least one Paralympic medal at those Games.

Around 300 shooters from 60 countries are expected to compete at the Cheongju 2018 World Championships, the first competition where athletes can grab places for their countries at Tokyo 2020.