“The important thing in life is not the triumph, but the fight….” – The Olympic Creed.
Today, the joy of fighting is often overpowered by the pride of victory. Whether it’s for grades, job titles or financial accomplishments, we could easily picture ourselves relentlessly competing against anyone over anything. And to our dismay, the never-ending competition cycle is rather cultivated from our own pressure of reaching victory than the fighting itself.
Having served in the education industry for a while, we understand how stressful it is for students to achieve academic goals. Especially for those who wanted to pursue competitive professions – like healthcare. As university entrance is getting more selective, participating in academic competitions to build up an outstanding admission portfolio is widely promoted.
While stimulating students intellectually, academic competitions tend to create unnecessary stress for students. As the first step to mastering something is to enjoy it, we’ve designed the Anatomage Tournaments to embody a new approach to celebrating student’s brilliance – which is through the joy of fighting – instead of victory.
The Cornerstone For The Joy of Fighting: Teamwork
Anatomage Tournament is not just an academic competition – but also an experience of how teamwork is celebrated. As for reaching the championship altogether, members within a team must solve a series of anatomy challenges – through trust.
A team captain will be appointed and serve as the only person who has direct contact with the Anatomage Table’s digital cadaver – a tool used to quiz participants about human anatomy. The captain will be also the one that submits the answer on behalf of the team. However, this doesn’t prevent everyone within a team from playing an equal part in the victory. Team members can discuss with each other before finalizing the answer which is then submitted by the team captain. Since the rest of the team won’t be able to directly interact with the cadaver, not placing complete trust in the team captain would be hard to maintain the team spirit – or even win.
Unlike other academic competitions where individual performance is rewarded, at Anatomage Tournaments, the honor (and prizes) will be shared with all members of the winning team as the Tournaments are concluded.
In a competitive society where teamwork is becoming an underrated virtue, we want to construct Anatomage Tournament as a venue in which success can be fought through collaboration. And when a competition is promoted through teamwork, participants’ focus will be shifted towards fostering comradeship over the prizes.
You Win When You Fight With Joy
Since Anatomage Tournaments are centered around the philosophy of “fighting” instead of “winning”, from our perspective, no participant is a loser. With Anatomy continuing to be one of the most challenging courses for high school (and even college) students, it’s refreshing to see how Anatomage Tournament participants engage in the anatomy challenges with much enthusiasm. Most of the participants were surprised to see how simple the human anatomy could be when it’s visualized using the Anatomage Table. Whether it’s supraspinatus muscles and musculocutaneous nerves, the complex structure of human anatomy can be defined through interactive 3D technology.
And if there is one impact that we want to make on our participants, that is to go home with a new mindset about anatomy learning – which can be done through joy.
Having executed both in-person and online Anatomage Tournaments for three years, there are countless moments where students displayed their enthusiasm during the process. Here are our favorites:
“Intuitive Teamwork” Moments
This clip is taken from the in-person AACI/Anatomage Tournament hosted in CSU Northridge. The captured moments above show how exciting the students were when they worked with each other to identify the anatomical structures of the Anatomage Table’s digital cadaver. Each team member exhibited a paramount level of attention to not only the cadaver’s structures but also their teammates’ gestures so they could efficiently communicate with each other.
“STEM girls” Moments
While STEM gender gap continues to be an existing issue in the industry, we have many female students who participated and won our Anatomage Tournaments.
“The Joy of Learning” Moments
No – those above moments aren’t from some televised sports game. They, indeed, are taken from our in-person Anatomage Tournaments – an academic competition dedicated to anatomy and physiology lovers. Look how invested (and excited) they were while competing over one of the toughest subjects. Once students love the subject they learn, that’s how proactive and joyful they are when it comes to tackling the subject challenges.
“The important thing in life is not the triumph, but the fight;…the essential thing is not to have won, but to have fought well”
The scientific meaning of the human body continues to be discovered and its learning is a life-time journey. By no means should this journey be an uninterrupted joy. In our Anatomage Tournament community, we witness that it’s been visited by anxiety, disappointments and goodbyes. Even so, there is nothing more important to us than inspiring our young generations to enjoy the journey of anatomy learning through the Anatomage Tournaments – and share those emotions that can’t be taught at school. We are happy to see the incredible impact they have been making on students, encouraging them to persist with the “fight” even after the Tournaments end.
For more information about how to participate in the upcoming Anatomage Tournaments, please visit here. To our future participants, a series of intellectually stimulating battles await.