In 2019, the European Handball Federation and TWIN created an idea to raise the concept of role models. 4 years later, this idea has evolved to a programme that is unique on European sport federation level. Last week, the 5th Respect Your Talent Camp took place in Vienna, Austria.

In Respect Your Talent, some of the world’s best handballers assist aspiring talents on their adventurous journey towards professional sport. Based on their own incomparable pathway, and supported by leading experts in their field, stars of the game teach the next generation of players about holistic personal development and high-demanding aspects surrounding the modern game of handball. Since the programme start, more than 1500 young players across the continent have learned through Respect Your Talent.

21 European countries united

From 7-10 December, the 5th Respect Your Talent Camp took place in Vienna, Austria. 30 girls from 21 European countries participated in the event, co-designed by the EHF & TWIN. Carmen Martín4 (Spain), Andrea Lekic (Serbia), Jelena Grubisic (Croatia), and Anja Althaus (Germany) served as ambassadors.

Secretary General Martin Hausleitner stresses the programme relevance on behalf of the EHF:

Many female team sports are on an unprecedented rise. Handball is one of them. Keeping the balance, staying healthy, and performing well in such a dynamic environment is challenging. This requires competences. Respect Your Talent wants to contribute to young players being better able to deal with handball’s manifold demands. And what better way to learn than with your international peers, and directly from some of the world’s best and leading experts? This is the unique Respect Your Talent Camp spirit.
3 of the 4 ambassadors: Anja Althaus, Andrea Lekic, Carmen Martín

The female player journey

The leitmotif of this year’s conceptual framework by TWIN was “The female player journey”. Consequently, the camp’s training sessions focused on most relevant challenges accompanying the transition from junior to (professional) senior level:

  1. Navigating your journey (Dual Career: Follow multiple dreams – delivered by TWIN Athlete Education)
  2. Fueling your journey (Nutrition, Regeneration & Fitness: Build pre- and post-game routines)
  3. Stabilizing your journey (Mental Fitness: Deal with pressure)
  4. Protecting your journey (Sports Law: Sign your first professional contract; Anti-Doping: Know forbidden substances and methods)
  5. Sharing your journey (Media: Shine in interviews & Deal with criticism on social media)
“The game of elite handball is much bigger than the court itself. Professionalizing the own holistic career approach is therefore a key factor of success. Respect Your Talent is dedicated to helping aspiring players gather awareness, knowledge and skills alongside the game to become an even better, more complete athlete.”
Wolfgang Stockinger
TWIN Founder & CEO
Wolfgang Stockinger for Respect Your Talent

Photos © Uros Hocevar / kolektiff