Today I was taking my online consultation at the writing center according to our assignment and the lovely tutor girl asked me “is pentathlon a sport?” after reading my “Introductory essay”.  I completely forgot how unpopular this sport is in the U.S. and how little Americans know about this sport which has great traditions in Europe. She advised me I should have explained what modern pentathlon was in my essay. So here it is my introduction to this sport.

The modern pentathlon is a sport contest that includes five events: pistol shooting, epee fencing, 200 meter freestyle swimming, show jumping (horse-riding) and a three kilometer cross-country run. The modern pentathlon was invented by the Baron Pierre de Coubertin, by the same person who founded the modern Olympic Games.  The name derives from the Greek penta- “five” and –athlon “contest”. The addition of  “modern” to the name distinguishes it from the original pentathlon of the ancient Olympic Games. As the events of the ancient pentathlon was modeled after the skills of the idea soldier of the time as modern pentathlon models to the ideal soldier of the 19th century. These soldiers needed to be good at fencing and shooting to fight against enemies and needed to have skills in running, riding on unfamiliar horses and swimming when they founded themselves behind the enemy’s lines.  Originally only soldiers played this sport.  Women started to play only twenty-five years ago, and my Mum was one of the first women who did pentathlon.

My whole family did pentathlon, my Dad, my Mum, me and my little sister. My Dad was the most successful, who was a professional pentathlete for fifteen years and he won a European Championship.  My both parents studied at college to be pentathlon coaches and my Dad ended up being  fencing and horse-riding coach and my Mum is a swimming and horse-riding coach. They work in the same sport club called UTE.

Unfortunately, my career is sadly ended as a pentathlete after ten years without any serious results. Nevertheless, I will be always thankful for my parents they made me do it when I was eight years old. I learnt so much out of this sport. Those twenty-five hours practices a week taught me how to overcome my deadlock, how to work hard for achievements and do not except impossible as an option. After doing pentathlon the “real world” is not a challenge any longer.

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