Dajana Eitberger relies on unusual methods at the Luge World Championships in Oberhof in order to win the longed-for gold medal in the end.
As early as December, the EM second was put into a hypnotic state by a sports psychologist. "We tried a few things to really get back into the subconscious," said the 32-year-old Eitberger of the German Press Agency. It was about finding the fun, "the rest will come by itself". The Thuringian starts as the favorite on her regular track in Oberhof. The decision in the sprint will be made this Friday (1:00 p.m.), that of the main race on Saturday (11:45 a.m.). In addition to Eitberger, European champion Anna Berreiter (23) and Julia Taubitz (26) are among the German hopes for women.
"An Exciting Journey"
"It was kind of an exciting journey," said Eitberger about the two-hour session just before the Christmas holidays. "I was emotionally very agitated afterwards", many things had spilled out, "that you don't think about in everyday life, because in the end you just work". It was about the pressure of expectations and about learning to "filter out one's own strengths". And Eitberger also had a small vision: "During the meeting I got so distracted that I was mentally on the train in Oberhof and drove there."
A good omen? The German team's medal hopes are high before the fourth World Championships in Oberhof after 1973, 1985 and 2008, especially from local hero Eitberger: She leads the overall World Cup and plays at home. "You could get me out of bed at three in the morning and say: 'Please take the train down there!' I would do that immediately." It was particularly important to her that she consulted the sports psychologist at the Olympic training center in Munich immediately after her World Cup victory in Park City (Utah, USA), "because I know very well that one gets overly intellectual relatively quickly".
Eitberger is considered a perfectionist in the toboggan scene. In the past she was "perhaps too accurate, too perfectionist," said Eitberger. She brooded over little things: if the glove wasn't put on at the right time or the seat was different. "At some point you get caught up in it and you go really gaga." She still fears that such trifles could upset the routine. It was "total humbug," Eitberger said, but after the success in Park City, she was afraid of "getting caught in this spiral."