Meet Elías Cuesta Cobo: The World-Renowned Archery Coach with Olympic Dreams

Meet Elías Cuesta Cobo: The World-Renowned Archery Coach with Olympic Dreams

Elías Cuesta Cobo is recognised as one of the best archery coaches in the world. He was born in Granada, but moved to Jaén at an early age. 25 years ago, in 1999, he picked up a bow for the first time thanks to a beginner’s course that his father enrolled him in. Later, the national team coach began a career that led him to compete in the most prestigious international tournaments. In 2012, his most important moment came when he defended the colours of Spain at the 2012 London Olympics.

—How are Pablo Acha and Elia Canales doing for the Olympics?

—Both have a very good level of sporting and personal maturity to face the Olympic Games. In terms of results, both Pablo with his European championship, which he won a few years ago, and Elia, European runner-up this year, have a track record of very good results in recent seasons.

—What goals do you have, given the level of ambition you have always shown?

—You have to be there and then an arrow can determine whether you make it through a round or not. A millimetre can determine whether you make it through a qualifying round or fight for medals, but obviously the numbers speak for themselves. For the last four or five seasons we have been fighting for medals in all the World Cups. The mixed team, this season, has managed to get on the podium in all four competitions.

—The teams have stayed close to the objective.

— The truth is that we did a very good test, especially the girls’ team, which finished third in the qualifying round. Then they lost in the play-off against Colombia, but the important thing is that we gave the performance that we really have.

—What is your daily routine like before going to the Paris Games?

—We continue training with the whole team, because there are people who are preparing for the Junior and Cadet European Championships and others who are training for the Spanish Championships, which will be held while we are at the Games, so in the end there are twelve or thirteen people in the group. Each one has a more individualised training. Pablo and Elia often do a fairly separate training session, away from the others, but at other times we are together. They start at eight in the morning, with some meditation exercises, with their warm-ups, then the technical part in which they shoot arrows doing certain exercises, simulating the competition, doing things, until about one or one thirty in the afternoon. Then the boys go to rest for a while. They come back at four and do another meditation exercise and psychological exercise, the technical part and then at the end of the day, at seven or seven thirty, they do the physical session and so on every day until the 19th when we travel.

—How has the situation changed since you competed at the London Olympics?

—As in all sports, training methods have evolved. A big key to success is that the goalkeepers are becoming more specialized and that the coaching staff is getting bigger. That is, there is one person specialized only in physical preparation, another in psychology, another in sports coaching, another specialized in equipment, a first coach and a second coach. The fact that the group is getting bigger means that people specialize in smaller and smaller areas and the small details are worked on much better. Many small details in the end make a big difference in the results.

—Who are the main favourites that Acha will compete with?

—In both the boys and girls categories, the biggest power, the favourite, is always South Korea. But being the favourites, this year in the women’s category they have only won one of the four World Cup events, which shows that not only has Korea dropped in performance, but that the other countries are getting much closer. Then there are big countries in Asia, such as China, Chinese Taipei or India, which have been competing very well for a few years. Then in Europe there are Italy or France and then some archers from other countries.

—Are you negotiating the renewal with the Federation?

—This is a time when I don’t like to talk about it, because I’m focused on preparing for the Olympic Games and on Pablo and Elia performing well. The reality is that achieving very good results in recent years with the Spanish Federation opens doors to other countries. My priority will always be Spain, staying here and fighting for the country that gave me everything in the world of sport. We’ll have to wait until the Paris Games are over and see what we have to improve, what things we can do with the project that the Spanish Federation offers us, and then we’ll make a decision.

—What is the center like where Pablo and Elia are going to shoot?

—The game is on the Esplanade des Invalides in the centre of Paris, very close to the Eiffel Tower, during the qualifying round. We have pictures, we have plans and by travelling beforehand, we will have time to train and do a good job mentally to prepare well for the qualifying round.

2024-07-09 08:31:18
#Elias #Cuesta #Cobo #chance #winning #medal

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