London 2012
USA players celebrate, Linsey Berg on the right side
USA's captain Lindsey Berg
Lindsey Berg (right) and her coach Hugh McCutcheon
USA's captain Lindsey Berg following Destinee Hooker in a defence action
USA Lindsey Berg here setting against Turkey

 

Behind Lindsey Berg’s story there are Napela’s dreams

London, Great Britain, August 10, 2012 – Call her Napela and she will smile. Lindsey Berg, the starting setter of the USA team, prefers her second name. A name which represent the second half of her personality: it’s “Napela” and it means “ a relaxing place to live in”. “My grandmother, my mother’s mum, she’s from Hawaii. I love the second name they gave me, I’m feeling myself more Napela than Lindsey. I even said that to my parents: Lindsey? I don’t like it. I prefer so much Napela.”

London, Great Britain, August 10, 2012 – Call her Napela and she will smile. Lindsey Berg, the starting setter of the USA team, prefers her second name. A name which represent the second half of her personality: it’s “Napela” and it means “ a relaxing place to live in”.

“My grandmother, my mother’s mum, she’s from Hawaii. I love the second name they gave me, I’m feeling myself more Napela than Lindsey. I even said that to my parents: Lindsey? I don’t like it. I prefer so much Napela.”

On the court, Berg is a warrior. Always praising her teammates, leading the team with cleverness and grit. Off the field of play, she turns back to her Hawaiian nature. Back to the Napela side. For example when she talks about Italy: “Italy gave me everything, I spent seven years playing there, seven seasons that changed my life. I left a piece of my heart there. I matured as a person and as a player, it’s my second home and I have friends there who will be friends throughout my life. It was an incredible experience, I have not a single bad thought about Italy.”

Funny to say, one of the attackers who she fed more with her wise setting is Sheilla. They played together in the club of Pesaro for three years in a row. On Saturday 11 they will see each other with their respective gritty faces marked by the squares of the net. The former teammates are now opponents, fighting for a gold medal. Exactly like in Beijing, when the starting setter of the final chosen by coach Lang Ping was Robyn Ah Mow-Santos but eventually from the second set the match was just a Berg’s affair.

At the beginning of her Olympic campaign, Lindsey was worried about her knee. She was forced to stop for a whole season in 2009 due to a surgery.

“I was out for nine months. This year my knee was aching terribly for an arthrosis. So I went to Düsseldorf, Germany, where I was visited by professor Peter Wehling, the same doctor who treated Kobe Bryant. I can’t tell how much it was effective, but my knee is ok, no pain so far. I don’t care what will happen after Saturday, then. I’m too focused on this Olympic Games, my last one. I worked so hard on building muscles, especially for my knee.”

Her memories go back to Beijing where she got a silver medal, losing 3-1 against Brazil. “Beijing was unbelievable, I still think that we played beyond our expectations. But this is London. It’s another story, another team. I will seal both these Olympics in my heart as fantastic trials of my life.”

The semifinal apparently was an easy business, but Berg doesn’t agree: “It was not a real 3-0. We were absolutely focused on each single rally, but those girls were amazing. They’ve been also ahead two points. Every time we reached 20 points we started to play perfectly.”

There’s another passion in Lindsey Berg’s life, apart to jump with her hands up and her shoulder close to the net. This passion may even take the place of volleyball, because she’s not so sure to continue. “Fashion, I love it. My project is to open a boutique in Los Angeles with friends of mine. I have an offer for next season and I like it, but I’m not sure yet. I mean, I could even stop and retire: I’m 80 per cent on that decision. I will decide after London.”

London is a fashion city… “Well, I had a 2-hour shopping, I bought something. Don’t worry for my Visa card, c’mon, its’ just money… My passion for fashion helps me a lot. I have another hobby which may become a profession beside the sport I like. When I’m off the court I have the fashion which keeps me mentally busy and it’s a way to refresh my mind. So when I’m back to the gym, I haven’t thought about volleyball for hours.”

 

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Beijing was unbelievable, but this is London. It’s another story, another team
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Additional information

Named USA Volleyball Female Volleyball Player of the year in 2008 and 2011; Lindsey berg has also been selected as the Best Setter at the 2005 and 2011 NORCECA Women’s  Continental Championships, along with the 2003, 2004 and 2005 Pan American Cups