Road to Tokyo -Jasmin Jüttner
“I love karate cause you are never done with it. You always strive for perfection regarding your technique but you will always be imperfect.”
Find your own way
Clearly, not every day is rosy. Lows are part of the game. Everybody encounters them and so do I. Especially when I run out of energy after a tough week or when I had to deal with multiple setbacks. Every athlete has to find their own way to get out of it.
Since many years I work together with my mental coach Andreas Ginger. He got me back on track after several emotional lows. Over the years we developed certain techniques, like the visualization of the paramount goal and to grow self-confidence. Most helpful for me is to remember my biggest goal, which is the Olympics in Tokyo 2020 right now. That motivation keeps me going even on bad days. During training, I constantly remind myself of this goal. You should always be aware that you don’t train just to train, you do train to reach the goals you set yourself.
Military and karate: The perfect marriage
I’m really lucky that I’m part of an elite sports group at the German military that gets special support. That’s the ideal way of combining career and job, but it sadly doesn’t work out for everyone. Karate doesn’t get much media attention, so you have to grind hard to get sponsors. That is a shame because karate has so much to offer. It teaches important values like respect, ambition and humility.
How to handle the heat
I feel the pressure. I think, there are just a few athletes not having pressure. And to be honest, I’m quite jealous about that. I have always been putting myself under a lot of pressure. It got a bit better within the years. You do get older and you take fewer things by heart.
Together with my mental coach, I tried out, expanded and changed different rituals over the years. I breathe in and out deeply, try to gather myself, visualize moments, that gives me self-confidence, and say a certain word that is connected with all those positive emotions.
Sounds cheesy but just believe
I encountered a few setbacks. Most of the times when I didn’t get the result I was aiming for, for example at the European Championships. It does sound cheesy but I always think that everything bad always has something positive about it. Self-pity isn’t an option. But I do allow myself to be down for 2 or 3 days. That time helps me to get over it and to assimilate the defeat. After that, I try to find the mistakes and start working on them. Most importantly to overcome obstacles is the self-belief. If you don’t believe in yourself, you’re missing this inner fire. Without that, it’s gonna get difficult.
Fire fuels the dreams
I have never thought about quitting. I love this sport too much. As long as the inner fire is burning and I have the desire to work my socks off, I will follow through and do everything to fulfill my dreams.
Karate and everything that I have experienced because of my sport has formed my personality. For example, nowadays I can handle a loss better than a few years ago. Also, I got better in being able to judge if something really is important or if I don’t have to go 100%, especially in daily life. For things I feel very strongly about, I still give my all, with the rest I’m more relaxed.
Experience is super influential and important in my discipline. It helps you to gain self-confidence. Your surrounding notices that, both on the matt and in daily life. You and only you decide how good you can be. Yes, that is a decision. If you are totally hooked for it, then train, train and train. Never be swayed by others and don’t ever listen to anybody telling you it’s impossible. You have to believe in yourself from the very beginning till the end. Nobody else will do that for you.
- Age: 24
- Nationality: German
- Home: Wiesbaden, Germany
- Club: Judokan Frankfurt
- Occupation: Military, Sport Soldier