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Olympic journey

April entered the professional beach volleyball world with partner Jenn Tessy. They upset the tournament and won the grand slam as one of the lowest seeds. Next, she excelled in the finals of the London Olympics and won silver. Experienced Kerry Walsh accompanied her in her next Olympics in Rio were they won bronze. Now, April and newbee Alex Klineman just won gold in the Tokyo Olympics.

Reasons for Success

April is intentional with her mental and physical game. She approaches every match  “knowing that [she has] to outperform ” her opponent. She knows she can’t control everything and accepts that. To combat comparison she competes with self. As for her training she advises players to “know their best training”. For her, she switched to olympic lifting as opposed to high volume and low weight lifting. As well as, and forces herself to condition. Force being the main word. She then details how to receive coaching. She stresses an open mind for receiving coaching. She finds that the more she knows and learns the more she fights to keep an open mind. Giving up control to coaches through trust can be a very difficult thing for highly trained athletes.

Choosing a Beach Partner

When you are as good as April you get to choose your partner. Her decision to pick Alex Klineman over Kerry Walsh this past year was a risky one. She chose a young player over an experienced one. She picked “based on her gut” even though some would have picked differently. This decision is not surprising however if you listen to April and the type of person she is. Intangible skills are highly important to her and her relationships.

Check out the full episode below and let us know what you think in the comments!