German sports finance has often been criticized. Now the focus is back: Athletes in Italy and Poland are getting big sums of money for an Olympic victory, while German athletes have to settle for even less.
While sport is already at the top of college in the United States and schoolchildren celebrate the achievements of athletes, there is an entirely different system in Germany. Here, too, spectators come to club competitions, but the support for athletes is different. In the United States, athletes can make a living from their profession, but this is not always the case in Germany.
As different as the sporting systems of each individual country, the way you treat the Olympic champions is as diverse as it is.
180 thousand euros in Italy? “It’s a long tradition with us”
In Germany, athletes receive 20 thousand euros from the German Sports Aid Foundation for the gold medal. There are still 15,000 euros for silver and 10,000 euros for bronze. These amounts are only available once. Means: The current Olympic champion Jessica von Prideaux-Werendl does not receive 20 thousand euros twice. Especially since there is an additional rule for team and team athletes. Its premiums are determined “separately by an expert panel,” DOSB’s logistics department told Ispo.com.
Even if this amount seems to be quite high overall, when compared to other countries it quickly becomes clear that this is not the case. Especially since athletes in Germany have to wait a year after Olympic success for payment – which is then made in twelve monthly instalments.
For comparison: in Italy, the athlete receives 180,000 euros for one-time Olympic gold and an additional 30 thousand euros. Danilo Di Tommaso, head of communications for the Italian Sports Federation, told t-online: “It’s a very long tradition with us. Every four years we decide how much the athlete gets. We have from 150,000 euros to 180,000 euros for one gold. The medal increased from 75,000 to €90,000 for the silver and €50,000 to €60,000 for the bronze. We have money to invest in the athletes, we want to support them with it.”
Comparison: This is how much money athletes in different countries make for an Olympic victory. (Source: t-online / t-online.de)
Doppler criticized sports finance
The approach that could be considered by the German Olympic Sports Federation and the German Olympic Sports Federation (DOSB). Thomas Roehler, the 2016 Olympic javelin thrower, also sees room for improvement in German athletes’ motivation. Röhler on t-online: “The incentive system is certainly something that needs to be scrutinized to a certain extent. Even before the financial discussion, I put the social value of the sport. I think young talents in particular feel very quickly whether the doing and the sporting goals they have are considered worthy by society. striving to achieve it.”
Rohler, who is in frequent contact with young athletes, adds: “For the top up-and-coming athletes, planning for safety is key. You don’t have to plan for wins. I think it’s hard to build all the sports sponsorship directly through victory awards.” However: “I’m definitely one of those who said the Olympic payout for the singles champion wasn’t right. You have to invest a lot of time to achieve something of Olympic success so that you are able to make a living from the sport in the end.” Röhler glaubt: “Das wiederum hat auch Einfluss auf die sportliche Leistung, weil du Zeit investieren musst, die dir im training verloren geht. Wenn der derekte sportliche Payout höher wäre, wäre gewährleistet, ren dassen dassen dassen sport intensive ability.”
Poland does it very differently
According to “Ispo.com”, more is also being invested in countries such as Poland and Indonesia. In Poland, athletes receive 50,000 euros plus a tax-free monthly pension for life at 60 percent of average income from the age of 40, and in Indonesia there is a whopping 345,000 euros for golden success at the Olympics. Singapore makes the highest payment: there should be 630,000 euros for each Olympic champion. That’s more than 31 times the amount the Germans paid for an Olympic gold medal!
Higher payments in particular could reverse the current trend in Germany: a drop in German medals at the Olympics. In 1992 there were 82 medals for Germany. In 2000 it was 56. In 2016, the German team won only 42 precious metals. There are currently 14 medals in these games (as of July 30, 2021).
“In a country where an Olympic champion gets a bonus of 20,000 euros and the king of the jungle 150,000, one should not be surprised by the lack of medals,” former swimmer Markus Diebler said five years ago. Criticism of the lack of funding for German athletes – this is a topic that is still current.
So Rohler adds to t-online: “If high awards are announced publicly, that’s of course an incentive for up-and-coming talent. When I go to fifth grade and talk about the Olympics, kids ask for riches. They ask: “Are you rich because you’re an Olympic champion?” I think That an athlete does not have to be rich, but these questions show how young people view the incentive system in sports.”
And this is exactly what should be a warning to the German Olympic Federation and the German sports assistant. Because golden successes start small.
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