What are doing after you finished your professional volleyball career?
I am helping volleyball players in the full width giving direction to their careers (not only on the court), how to achieve goals and become successful. Make them feel how powerful they are and what is their potential. I am writing a book “The secret of an Olympic Gold Medal” and the 5 steps to go from amateur to a real successful professional. Giving seminars for cubs/teams and players and I am developing new websites for my services.
Do you miss physical activity or you do some sports?
Yes very much, I miss it the most when I see a match. The feeling, energy on the court I did always enjoy it very much. The challenge to prove yourself every time, it is great and powerful sport. I am still in training but the intensity is much much lower, but I need to stay in balance also to achieve my goals in personal life!
In 1996 you won Olympics. What changed in (your) volleyball life from that times?
For me personally it was a big change, because people look different to me. From that time they and also I expected a lot more from me as a player. So in that way you can say it is a heavy medal you have to carry around. I was not prepared for this, and nobody did help me or teach me how to handle this new situation. If you mean what rules changed from that time, their are a lot of new rules like touching the net, net serve, the libero, playing with your feet and so on.
Where will be volleyball in twenty years in your eyes? We will see 2,20m tall players?
Actually I did as child have a very big dream “winning a Olympic medal” people would say you are crazy or it is a dream of a child. Your chances are as close to zero. But now I have another dream, I believe in the power volleyball and my goal is to position this beautiful sport above all others sports!
Do you think Netherlands will have chance to win Olympic medal in near future?
In Holland we need a organization with a professional approach for the positioning of the volleyball. We do have very good players, but after the success of 1996 we were waiting and did not do anything. Instead the world did go on and we are far behind, it is like in sport a athlete knows he need to train to achieve results nobody else can and will do that for him.