Showcasing medals, memories and major inspirations
Timothy Fok Tsun-ting, president of the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China, enjoys a work-out at an exhibition celebrating China's sporting feats in Taiyuan on Friday. [Photo by Wang Zhuangfei/China Daily]
The past, present and future of Chinese sports collide to inspirational effect at a special exhibition being staged at the Second National Youth Games in Taiyuan.
Launched in tandem with the Games' opening ceremony on Thursday, the 1,460-square-meter showcase at Shanxi Sports Center Stadium was organized by the General Administration of Sport of China to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the nation.
It features 143 exhibits and 252 photos, with highlights including medals and torches from the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
The exhibition is divided into six sections, beginning with China's first Olympic gold, claimed by shooter Xu Haifeng in 1984, as well as including recent developments like the ongoing preparations for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
Grassroots sports are also represented, with particular emphasis on the National Fitness Program for 2016-20, which aims to encourage 700 million people to exercise at least once a week.
Delegations from Hong Kong and Macao, whose Youth Games squads total 308 and 82 respectively, were among the many visitors to lavish praise on the exhibition.
"I'm touched by the exhibition. We can see the sports development of our country through the decades, which follows in the footsteps of the economic growth of our nation," said Timothy Fok Tsun-ting, the president of the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China and an honorary member of the International Olympic Committee.
"It shows the history - from our country's first gold in 1984 to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, one of the best Games in history. Now our country is preparing for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. It's a special experience for me and all the friends from the Hong Kong sports circle."
Fok was equally impressed by the Youth Games' opening ceremony on Thursday night when tens of thousands of spectators stood up to cheer for the Hong Kong delegates and athletes as they walked into the arena.
"Sports in Hong Kong have been receiving great support from the General Administration of Sport of China and many local sports bureaus. The Tokyo Olympics will arrive next year. The National Youth Games are a great opportunity for the Hong Kong team to sharpen up. Here's hoping we have great performances in Tokyo.
"The Youth Games is very meaningful. It's not just about winning medals. It's about promoting the national fitness plan and encouraging more people to take up sports.
"From a personal perspective, I'm playing lots of tennis nowadays. Although I'm not a pro, it benefits my health. I hope more people, especially the youngsters, will participate in sports."