As China emerges as a formidable international sports power, many youngsters are inspired by their nation’s Olympic athletes and dream of competing themselves. In this episode, we follow two young Chinese girls as they strive to turn their Olympic dreams into reality.
Nine-year-old Chi Chi trains under the critical eye of her gymnastics coach as she prepares for a crucial competition that will decide who will visit a national training center and meet a gold medalist. Xiao Mei is 12, and her sport is weight lifting. She, too, faces a key contest, when winning a scholarship depends upon lifting a weight greater than she’s ever lifted before.
VIEWER ALERT: Some viewers have found this video difficult to watch, as the young athletes are pushed very hard and many of them face heartbreaking disappointment and injury. Other viewers, however, welcome this insight into intense and sometimes harsh competition behind the glittering spectacle of the Olympic Games.