Dis­ci­plined lifestyle pays off for diver

Af­ter SEA Games glory, Ooi has his mind set on com­plet­ing his univer­sity ed­u­ca­tion

The Star Malaysia - - Nation - By NATASHA JOIBI nata­joibi@thes­tar.com.my

PETALING JAYA: It can get stress­ful for national diver Ooi Tze Liang to train for com­pe­ti­tions while also study­ing to gain ad­mis­sion into Univer­siti Malaya.

Ooi, who turns 24 on Sun­day, of­ten skips late-night out­ings with his friends so that he can sleep early and be fully fo­cused on his ca­reer as an ath­lete.

“It is im­por­tant to be dis­ci­plined, es­pe­cially when it comes to ad­her­ing to a healthy diet, and bal­anc­ing my time be­tween train­ing, study­ing and rest­ing.

“I do this to lower my risk of in­jury and im­prove my chances of per­form­ing well in com­pe­ti­tions,” said the Pe­nan­gite in a phone in­ter­view.

Ooi’s highly dis­ci­plined lifestyle has proven to be ef­fec­tive for his ca­reer.

In Au­gust, the Com­mon­wealth Games gold medal­list (for the 3m spring­board at Glas­gow 2014) re­tained two golds in the 3m spring­board and 10m plat­form at the 29th SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur.

Ear­lier this month, he part­nered Chew Yi­wei to clinch sil­ver in the men’s 3m spring­board syn­chro­nised event at the Aus­tralian Div­ing Grand Prix in Gold Coast.

With nu­mer­ous ac­co­lades un­der his belt at a young age, the sports­man now has his mind set on com­plet­ing his univer­sity ed­u­ca­tion.

He is cur­rently ap­ply­ing to en­rol in Univer­siti Malaya’s sports science de­gree pro­gramme.

“No mat­ter how many medals I win or how far I go in sports, it would not mat­ter if I do not com­plete my stud­ies.

“The pur­suit of ed­u­ca­tion is some­thing that is truly im­por­tant to me,” the de­ter­mined young man said.

Although he be­lieves that dis­ci­pline and good time man­age­ment are es­sen­tial habits to have as a suc­cess­ful sports­man and univer­sity stu­dent, Ooi finds it just as im­por­tant to take time off his reg­u­lar rou­tine to work on his men­tal health.

“To re­lease stress, I play Lego and watch YouTube videos.

“This is how I pre­vent neg­a­tiv­ity in my life – by set­ting aside time for my hob­bies,” he re­vealed.

The youngest among three sib­lings, Ooi also un­winds by go­ing back to his home­town in Ge­orge Town, Pe­nang, to spend time with his fam­ily.

“I go back to Pe­nang once or twice a year for fam­ily re­unions, and to visit my grand­mother,” he added.

For more healthy liv­ing tips, check out Star FitForLife Pe­nang 2017 this week­end. Themed “Get Fit. Live Great!”, it is aimed at in­spir­ing Malaysians to lead a healthy lifestyle by be­ing phys­i­cally and men­tally fit.

Star FitForLife Pe­nang 2017 is or­gan­ised by Star Me­dia Group Bhd with Great East­ern Life as ex­clu­sive event part­ner. Nes­tle Omega Plus is the of­fi­cial well­ness spon­sor.

The fair will be held at Spice Arena from Nov 17-19, 2017. It is open from 10am to 7pm and ad­mis­sion is free.

For de­tails, call 03-7967 1388 (ext 1529/1243/1466) or visit www.face­book.com/ starhealth­fair.

Golden achieve­ment: Ooi show­ing his gold medal af­ter win­ning the 10m plat­form fi­nal at the 29th SEA Games in Au­gust. — Ber­nama

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