A Trip Of A Lifetime With JAMES DESANTO, REGISTERED PHYSIOTHERAPIST NEWSLETTER
James DeSanto, Registered Physiotherapist at Core Solutions organized the trip of a lifetime for his son’s hockey team and all of their families this past month. James has been a coach since his daughter and son were old enough to skate. This summer, 13 players and their families (approx. 50 people in total) travelled to Beijing, China on July 24th to spend two weeks playing other hockey teams from all over the world! More importantly, their team were Bronze medal winners! It started with an idea that seemed impossible which turned into reality very quickly. With the Olympics going to Beijing China in 2022, CCM (a major hockey equipment manufacturer) decided to sponsor a minor hockey tournament to raise awareness of the sport in that country. In total, 70 teams from all over the world including: China, Canada, USA, Russia, Sweden, Korea, and Finland participated in this amazing tournament that included an opening and closing ceremonies. It was like getting ready for the Olympics for these boys! They contrived their team name, created the team logo, designed their jerseys and apparel, had 5 practices leading up to the games to get used to playing with each other and then even had a practice in China before the tournament started. And just like our Canadian Olympic team – this team kept a secret from their parents and fans – they hid a Loonie and Toonie at each end of the rink high up between the goal lights to help bring them good luck. And it worked! The team finished the round robin with 4 wins (vs. USA, Taipei, Beijing, Hong Kong) and 1 loss (vs. Russia), making it to the semi-finals where they lost a close game to the top local Beijing team. But they didn’t stop there – they went on to defeat the Team from Vancouver in the Bronze Medal game to bring home the medals and memories they will cherish forever. In fact they developed a bond with the Russian team that ended with both teams trading team hats
at the closing ceremonies – a moment that showed a sport can bring countries together! Families were able to take in all the sights and sounds that Beijing had to offer including stops at the Great Wall of China, Olympic Park, Summer Palace, Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square. They made their country proud, raising the Canadian Flag at the Closing Ceremonies on August 1, 2017 – where NHL star Anton Stralman of the Tampa Bay Lightning handed them their medals. Plans are already in the works for another international tournament next year!!!
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