When you’ve climbed your sport’s highest mountain, you have two choices: lament the absence of a bigger goal or embrace the totality of what it took to reach that summit and then work your butt off to polish that rare package of skills and aptitude. Takahiro Omori — the 2004 Bassmaster Classic winner — has chosen the latter. That’s why he’s enrolled in IMG Academies’ programs for the past seven years.
Located in Bradenton, Fla., the 400-acre multi-sport training complex offers coaching and tailored programs for multinational athletes from youth to pros. Bass fishing was a first, but Trevor Moawad, director of the IMG Performance Institute, said he insisted on treating Tak like any other athlete from day one.
“The Bassmaster Elite Series is the highest level in our industry,” Omori says. “If you want to compete against the best of the best on all different types of water, you have to prepare yourself not only with the physical part, but mental conditioning, nutrition — the whole thing. Just like you would get the best boat, engine, rods, reels and line, you have to train yourself to get better.”