To celebrate Seiko’s sponsorship of the IAAF World Championship, which started on Saturday in Beijing, we caught up with champion long jumper and Seiko ambassador Darya Klishina to find out how she stays at the top of her game
Darya Klishina is Seiko’s female watch ambassador
When did you realise you had a talent for long jump and how did you go about developing it?
I came into athletics when I was only 11. After around eighteen months of training, my coach noticed that I was particularly good at jumping and we started to do more exercises specifically for jumping technique.
I also had to start working on speed as the run-up is one of the most important components of long jumps, which people watching it often don’t realise.
What is your training regimen?
I currently practise six times a week, which sounds pretty extreme but is actually very normal for an athlete. However, I don’t do the same thing every day.
For three days a week, I have two training sessions a day and I practise for around two to three hours each session. I do get Sundays off, thankfully.
Darya in action
As well as your long jump career, you also model – do you enjoy this sideline?
I think I am managing to combine sports and fashion pretty well. My team, who works closely with me, supports me to ensure I get the balance right and that modelling doesn’t interfere with my athletics.
Obviously, my schedule is always drawn up subject to my training needs, because they are the most important thing. I’m a long jumper first and foremost.
Why did you decide to partner with Seiko? What synergy did you see between you and your career and the brand?
I consider it a great privilege that Seiko has selected me as an ambassador for their collections. I always feel their support, especially during competitions – it’s hard not to when there are Seiko measuring devices all around me!
I enjoy my relationship with team Seiko, but I also like Seiko watches. I think it is so important to like what you represent.
Darya enjoys her relationship with Team Seiko
How do you mentally prepare before you go out to jump?
While jumping I try not to notice what is around me or, rather, to see only the sand pit. I also like to imagine how my ideal jump should look and then try and do that in real life.
If, for just one day, you were given one extra hour, what would you do with it?
Like all athletes, I think I would ask for another hour to relax. Whenever I have some free time, I make sure I get some rest. It’s so important!
After training, relaxation is important to Darya
What advice would you give to young women wanting to get into athletics in general and long jump in particular?
First of all, you need to have a real desire to be in sports and having the ability to concentrate and focus is important too . If someone wants to be a professional athlete like a long jumper, he or she should really love what is involved. They should enjoy it in spite of the fact that it is really hard work. Sounds boring but it’s the only way to get results. And medals, of course!
The IAAF World Championships runs until August 30 and is televised on the BBC and British Eurosport. To find out when all the events are happening, click here.[jmrealted title=”Discover More” titlecolour=”blue” cat=”1756″ order=”rand” ]