As abc's jeffrey kofman tells us, there' a secret to chinese success. Extreme sacrifice and a surprising strategy. ♪ Reporter: It's beginning to sound like a broken record at these olympics. The... See More
As abc's jeffrey kofman tells us, there' a secret to chinese success. Extreme sacrifice and a surprising strategy. ♪ Reporter: It's beginning to sound like a broken record at these olympics. The chinese anthem blasts out again and again and again. As its athletes ascend the podium. The cold war is over, but the u.S. And china are locked in an olympic gold war. While the u.S. Medal haul has been consistent in recent years, china's has rocketed. From 5 golds in 1988 to 51 in 2008. How do they do it? This week, abc's gloria riviera in beijing visited one of the thousands of sports schools where future chinese olympians are already being groomed. This headmaster told abc news the secret to china's success. Young athletes who train hard and can endure hardship. Hardship? Look at the face of this girl as a coach stands on her legs. And this footage from 2008, when a coach uses a stick to get children to straighten their bodies. So much for childhood. The father of this weightlifting gold medalist has said he hasn't seen his son in six years. But the secret to china's medal success isn't just early and relentless training. There's a strategy. They have taken a p from the old communists of east germany, who used to win buckets of medals. You take the sports where the medals are most plentiful and that's where you have your energy. Diving, gymnastics, but sports that most countries overlook. So far, why has has won seven medals in shooting and seven in weight lifting. And, like its own synchronized swim team, practicing over and over as it goes for gold tomorrow, china is stretching
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