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Home News Road to Chengdu 2021: meet Mateo Schärer-Gonzalez, Swiss archer

Road to Chengdu 2021: meet Mateo Schärer-Gonzalez, Swiss archer

Summer Games 2 June 2023

The EPFL (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) student-athlete started archery some five years ago and completely by chance. “We were in holidays in Italy with the family and archery was among the activities we could do in the area,” he recalls. “From the moment I started, I told my parents I wanted to do it every day.”

“Mateo has a very strong mind and when he says something he goes 100 percent for it,” says his mother Carla. This probably explains his dazzling progress.

“What I like in archery, it is the unique and simple motion. It is not like in football or volleyball, where you have multiple motions. We have only one, always the same, but it requires a remarkable level of precision,” Mateo adds.

Every day, at the World Archery Excellence Center in Lausanne, he spends significant time to thoroughly analyse his technique on video, correcting details that are imperceptible to a non-expert eye. Then, he shoots hundreds of arrows.

“His strengths are above all the perseverance and the resilience he shows in training, whether physically, technically or mentally,” says Mateo’s coach Howard Catherine.

“He always wants to do more. He is also a great perfectionist but at times this can be a weakness. To progress he will have to accept to do things simply without necessarily seeking perfection.”

His commitment to archery is matched only by his dedication to his life science engineering studies. In the future, he sees himself doing research in a lab. But for the time being, he has to manage his dual career.

“The has been the most challenging part,” Mateo concedes. “Finding the right balance between sport and studies and organising and planning the two activities harmoniously is extremely difficult.”

“But he has done a great job in that area, and I feel very proud of what he has achieved,” his mother insists.

The Swiss archer now focuses on getting in form for the d-day. The Chengdu 2021 FISU Games are his main goal of the year.

“It is such a beautiful sport, it’s simple, relaxing. And the feeling of shooting a 10 under pressure, with the wind, is unparalleled,” he says with a spark in his eyes.

The Chengdu 2021 FISU World University Games will take place from 28 July to 8 August, with the archery competition starting already on 27 July and ending on 31 July. It will be live on  

Watch the video (Also on FISU.TV)