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Talent Spotlight: Meet Manfredi, Sailing Athlete & IB student at RIS

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Talent Spotlight: Meet Manfredi, Sailing Athlete & IB student at RIS


In this second episode of interviews with the sporting talents in our school community, I interviewed Manfredi M., a student from our current Year 12 class who practices professional sailing. Manfredi is an exceptional athlete who has competed at the international level. I asked him how he manages to study for the challenging IB curriculum and train out of Rome simultaneously. 

Meet Manfredi M.

My passion for sailing began when I was four years old because my father had a sailboat and we would sail together, then at seven I started sailing on the optimist. Sailing is my biggest passion because it provides a unique opportunity to connect with nature in a profound way. When sailing, I feel connected with the elements of wind, water, and sun. The sound of the wind in my ears, the splash of water against the hull, the mainsheet between my hands, and the growing adrenaline in my body, make me feel at one with the boat.

At what age did you start competing and what is the biggest achievement you have arrived at?

I started competing when I was eleven years old, and my biggest achievement was when I competed in the 2021 Under16 World Championship and won a bronze medal. 

Were your parents supportive of your passion?

Both my parents are very supportive, especially my dad because he transmitted my passion of sailing to me. 

What is your daily routine like when you have to go sailing?

I mainly go sailing during the weekend because I train in Anzio. I wake up at 7:00 am and go to the train station to get on the train for Anzio, when I arrive at the beach I prepare my boat and get in the water by 11:00 am. I train for three hours then eat and get back to Rome at 5:00 p.m.

How do you manage to study for the IB curriculum and at the same time train outside Rome?

Training and at the same time studying during the IB is quite challenging but I manage my time in a smart way, I use my free periods to revise and study different subjects. 

Which important lessons did you learn from your sport and how did they impact your way of living?

I have learned different important lessons from my sport that have impacted my way of behaving in everyday life. I’ve learned different skills such as discipline and the management of time. Sailing is a very fun but complicated sport so arriving at the highest level of discipline is the key. 

What do you believe to be one of your weaknesses and what are you doing to improve it?

I think that one of my weaknesses is patience, I expect a lot from myself in a little amount of time, and from my point of view it can be a positive thing but on the other hand, it demotivates me because I don’t reach my goals. I am starting to be more patient so that I can have bigger results. 

What's the best piece of advice you've gained from your coach?

The best piece of advice that my two coaches have given to me is to always stay focused and work hard to achieve my goals. 

What type of exercises do you do to maintain your strength for sailing? 

I go running twice a week, I wake up very early on Tuesday and Wednesday to train. To stay healthy I follow a specific diet. 

What advice would you give to your 10-year-old self? 

The most important advice that I would give to my 10-year-old self is to be patient and not expect too much from myself in a little amount of time, work hard and always give the maximum. 

Interview by Giulia D., Prefect and IB Year 12 student

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