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Respect Your Talent

Handball stars offer advice at two-day ‘Respect Your Talent’ camp


Handball stars offer advice at two-day ‘Respect Your Talent’ camp

Five stars of the handball world - Kari Aalvik Grimsbo (NOR), Ana Gros (SLO), Andrea Lekic (SRB), Jelena Grubisic (CRO) and Anja Althaus (GER) - who have become ambassadors for the EHF’s ‘Respect Your Talent’ initiative were in Vienna on 15 to 16 December to give a group of talented handball players an important insight into the life as a professional.

The 29 girls selected during W17 and W19 EHF EUROs and Championships over the summer were given guidance on a range of topics from five EHF experts at the two-day ‘Respect Your Talent’ camp.

‘Respect Your Talent’ project was launched in July 2019 and is aimed at fostering the development of young and talented handball players on and off the court. The project aims to make the players aware of their talent, but also to stress that talent itself is not enough to succeed.

Pictured form left to right: Kari Aalvik Grimsbo (NOR), Anja Althaus (GER), Jelena Grubisic (CRO), Ana Gros (SLO), Andrea Lekic (SRB)

Dual career and doping in focus on the first day

Slovenian national team captain and Brest Bretagne right back Ana Gros informed the group how important education and skills outside of handball can help a career outside of the sport. Ana’s words were strengthened by those of Respect Your Talent co-creator, Wolfgang Stockinger, the EHF’s Scientific Specialist on Dual Careers.

Raising awareness of doping controls and procedures were then explained in detail by five-time EHF EURO champion Kari Aalvik Grimsbo and the EHF’s anti-doping expert Prof. Hans Holdhaus.

Kari Aalvik Grimsbo during the anti-doping workshop

Media skills & sports law on the agenda for day 2

The following day, the camp focused on dealing with the media, the use of social media and contract law.

Three-time EHF Champions League winner Anja Althaus – the face of the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League this season – and award-winning Austrian sports journalist Karoline Zobernig advised the group on how to handle media requests and answering difficult questions in interviews.

The girls were then introduced to the world of social media by Serbian international and EHF Champions League winner Andrea Lekic and the EHF’s Digital Content Manager Berenice Rallier. The pair discussed the best ways of creating content, explained what to post and what not post and gave guidance on how to protect their accounts.

Signing and negotiating contracts, the dangers of match-fixing and choosing an agent were the topics explained by Croatian international Jelena Grubisic. The 2016 EHF Champions League winner was joined by Andreas Joklik, an EHF expert for sports law, in giving the group the lowdown on these key subjects which are often overlooked by young players.

With the help from experienced sports journalist Karoline Zobernig, players learned how to handle media request and behave in front of the camera

Exploring Vienna

The camp did not just focus on education but also gave the girls opportunity to meet each other and the project ambassadors in a more relaxing environment.

On both days, they had an opportunity to explore the Austrian capital and visit some of the most popular city attractions like the Vienna Ferris wheel and well-known Viennese Christmas market.

They also learned something completely different: how to make the perfect apple strudel – an Austrian favourite.

‘Respect Your Talent’ project continues in 2020

After six activity days and a successful maiden ‘Respect Your Talent’ camp for the class 2019, the project will continue in 2020 at the Men’s 18 and 20 EHF EUROs and EHF Championships.

In total, seven competitions will be held over the summer of 2020 starting in July with M20 EHF EURO in Innsbruck (AUT) and Brixen (ITA) and continue with the M20 EHF Championships in Bugojno (BIH) and Riga (LAT).

August will bring M18 EHF EURO in Celje (SLO) and three M18 EHF Championships in Burgas (BUL), Skopje (MKD) and Podgorica (MNE).

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