“Sport changes life” – this old saying is well exemplified by Lau Tsun-ling.

 

Tsun-ling, alias Ling, is a 22-year-old who sports bronzed skin, an athlete’s pride. His every gesture exhibits his self-confidence as an athlete. Upon mention of his favourite triathlon, he would speak with great fervour. It is understandable as he was a former member of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Delegation at the national triathlon games. Good at both swimming and running, he has been taking part in different types of sports since he was a kid. He recalls competing in his first aquathon when he was just a Primary Six student. Although he didn't win a prize, he became addicted to the sport and thus began his triathlete journey.

“The first time I participated in a race, I had no idea it was a triathlon. I was only aware that I had to keep swimming and running. It was also the first time I swam 200 metres in a boundless sea. It goes without saying that I was overwhelmed with fear. Luckily I made a strenuous effort to complete the race.” Ling says that his failure in the game triggered his determination to clinch a victory. Since then, he has worked even harder with a view to achieving better performance.

Ling teases himself by saying that as a kid he would always try something new but with short-lived passion. Growing up, he has learned perseverance from his triathlete career and his coaches’ teachings. After his first aquathon race, he began a new journey as a secondary school student and as a triathlete. He progressively received cycling training and had a chance to get guidance from renowned cyclist, Mr Hung Chung-yam, who later became his enlightening coach. “Mr Hung is a distinguished athlete with extensive life experiences. With ‘perseverance is a prerequisite for success' as his guiding principle for life, he has been my role model for as long as I can remember.”

Training, though intensive, has never deterred Ling from pursuing the sport. Instead, it has reinforced his conscientious attitude towards life. Ever since he decided to commit himself to triathlons, he has been practising six days a week even in bad weather. From time to time, he practises swimming at 5:30 am before going to school and goes to the stadium after school for further training. To endure his arduous daily schedule, he has to carry on with persistence, perseverance and will power. Whenever the thought of giving up appears in his mind, he will encourage himself by recalling a successful athlete's story. “Apart from physical fitness, a triathlon also requires good psychological quality. All along, my perseverance has been derived from the satisfaction that I get from sports, which in turn has boosted my self-confidence and given me a specific goal to strive for.”

Recently Ling has started to actively engage in various types of races, including running, trail running and water sports. However, he is most keen on triathlon events simply because the sport means everything to him. As a triathlete, not only does Ling go up on stage often to receive his well-earned prize, but he also proactively promotes the sport as a triathlon coach. He earnestly hopes that he will soon become a full-time sportsman so that he can continue on his journey as a triathlete.