Where are they now? Adrian MoorhouseSubscribe
Chris Maddocks 11 March 2001
Olympic race-walker Chris Maddocks meets Adrian Moorhouse
Adrian Moorhouse dominated British swimming in the late eighties, returning home from the Seoul Olympics with the 100m breaststroke Gold medal. Since then, Adrian has translated his sporting success to a successful career in the business world, as Managing Director of Lane 4 Management Group.
Chris Maddocks, a veteran of five Olympic Games himself, talks to Adrian about life after swimming.
AM After the Barcelona Olympics (8th in the breaststroke final) and my competitive retirement I was asked to do motivational speeches. I met a few sports psychologists to understand what made people succeed or perform at a better level and was fascinated to know how performance in sport and business might transfer. On retirement I didn't really know what I wanted to do and had to think about all the things that I was good at as a sportsman - apart from swimming 100m Breaststroke. I'd had the discipline to train hard, set goals and react to feedback.
CM You met a lot of different people through your swimming success including, I understand, one of Lane 4's other founding members, former British team sports psychologist Professor Graham Jones?
AM Yes, after Barcelona I met a number of business people. Graham was working with some American executives, assisting them to adopt lessons learnt from achievement in sport to their work, and that over time it would make a difference. He invited me to join him.
CM Does it take a long time to make a difference to people?
AM If I meet with people once a month for example, I have more of a chance of affecting the way they are as leaders, as we can talk and converse about their situation. It's a business-coaching venture. We've now been together as a business for nearly six years. As a result, there's less sporting influences up front, but we've still got a sporting heritage.
CM And your advice to athletes beyond their competitive careers?
AM I struggled through school with my sport. But it taught me early on the value of balancing several things. I would encourage athletes to be aware of the benefits of being rounded individuals. Not to make excuses so you don't do other things.
CM Sure, but many readers will already be focused athletes - many seemingly making sacrifices in order to maximize their sporting careers.
AM Of course, but still aim to organise time to be social and productive elsewhere. It can be tough, but say: 'I could probably do that if I tried.' There's more to life than just sport.
CM Your favourite sporting moment?
AM One was obviously my Olympic win. Another was in 1987 at the European Cup short-course Championships in Bonn, Germany, where I became the first person to break a minute (59.75) for 100m Breaststroke. We're all looking for the perfect race. Well I got out of the pool and thought - 'I could not have done that any better. I've only had about three of those perfect races in my life!