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Take Five With US Speedskating's Joey Mantia

April 21, 2014, 1:13 p.m. (ET)

When it comes to sports, fans and athletes have come to expect one constant – the unexpected. 

Liberty Mutual Insurance Responsible Sports sat down with U.S. Speedskating’s Joey Mantia to get his thoughts on preparing for the unexpected. 

In our exclusive Take 5 interview, Joey shared some of his tactics and techniques for mentally preparing for a big race. Joey views mental preparation as “a long-term commitment” that begins at practice.

“I approach every practice as an opportunity to better myself, and I do everything I can to make that happen,” said Joey. “Before I race, I concentrate on all the time and hard work I put in, and that gives me the peace of mind that allows me to perform to the best of my ability.”

When it comes to preparing for the unexpected, Joey believes in this same disciplined and dedicated approach to practice and hard work. In his opinion, enough preparation removes “the unexpected” from the equation.

“When your process is sound and your preparation is concrete, you’ll be in a position where unforeseen events won’t stop you from performing your best,” said Joey. “When you’re at the top of your game, there becomes no ‘unexpected’.” 

Joey added that he believes parents’ unwavering support can help their young athletes prepare for the unexpected. Reviewing potential scenarios and past experiences with them can also help encourage growth.

“Always stand behind your kids, whether they fall short or not,” said Joey. “That’s the most important thing you could ever do. Guide them in finding their process. Kids are amazing, and the best thing you can do as a parent is give them the opportunity to prove that.”

To read the full Take 5 interview with Joey, visit Come back next month for another exclusive Take 5 interview!

At Liberty Mutual Insurance, we constantly look for ways to celebrate the countless acts of responsibility shown by people every day. We created Responsible Sports, powered by Positive Coaching Alliance, as part of this belief to help ensure that our kids experience the best that sports have to offer in environments that promote and display responsibility. We believe kids can learn valuable life lessons when coaches and parents come together to support winning on and off the field

Join the Responsible Sports movement!


©2014 Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and Positive Coaching Alliance. All rights reserved. This material may not be distributed without express written permission. Any reproduction in whole or part by and individuals or organizations will be held liable for copyright infringement to the full extent of the law.

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Joey Mantia

Long Track Speedskating