Sporting Life: Yip Pin Xiu's pals reveal a swimmer fearless and focused

Yip Pin Xiu competes in a heat of the women's 100m backstroke swimming event at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre in Tokyo, on Aug 25, 2021. PHOTO: AFP
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She can't grip the weight bar, her fingers can't do it, her condition won't allow it, but so what? Only her muscles have weakened, not her resolve. So a black strap is affixed to her wrists and then attached to the bar. Then Yip Pin Xiu pushes the weights. Somehow she finds a way to get better.

"She's not fragile," says Andrew Tay, the strength and conditioning coach from the Singapore Sport Institute. He should know. For over three years he's taken Yip - currently competing in Tokyo - through shoulder presses, dips, medicine ball throws and planks.

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