Pre-Games Bonus: Squad Goals

The Tokyo Olympics and Beijing Winter Olympics forced every participating athlete to shift the way they approached their sport: no spectators, not even the athletes' families, were allowed at the tournament.

In Episode 2 of The Podium: An NBC Olympic and Paralympic podcast, titled "Pre Games Bonus: Squad Goals," Zora Stephenson is joined by several Olympic and Paralympic athletes — including familiar names like Jagger Eaton, Evan Medell, Hannah Roberts, Ilona Maher, Nyjah Huston, Matt Stutzman, Alex Walsh and more — who are excitedly preparing to have a crowd celebrate with them again at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

"The Tokyo Games was tough not having family, or friends, or coaches, not even having a crowd. So Paris is gonna be a much different experience, and to have them there is very special," Eaton said. 

Learning to perform without the extra energy from the crowd was one thing, but for athletes like Stutzman, re-training to compete with the added pressure and adrenaline from a horde of screaming fans required the addition of an extra step in his training regimen: skydiving.

Hear all about that and more in this week's episode of The Podium!

Episodes of The Podium release weekly in the lead-up to Paris, then every day once the Olympic flame is lit at the Opening Ceremony.

Follow the show on the iHeart AppSpotifyApple PodcastsAmazon Music or your favorite podcast platform.