By Fergus Murray on 30/10/09 at 7:13 pm
ITU Sport Development has announced a ‘new look’ Coaches’ Education Programme that includes several new certificate and accreditation opportunities for coaches from grassroots to high performance level.
ITU views education and development as being a vital link in the planning and application of strategic plans pertaining to long term athlete growth, development and performance. Over the past three years the ITU Sport Development Department has presented level 1 and level 2 coach education certification courses on an annual basis in all 5 regions of the ITU family.
The ITU level 1 Community Coaches’ Education Course is designed to prepare community, club and school coaches to present grassroots and “Tri for Fun programmes” locally with the focus being on skill and technique development for youth and beginners.
The ITU level 2 Competitive Coaches’ Education Course is an applied course that integrates sport sciences with triathlon specific preparation, planning and evaluation of the competitive Junior and U23 athletes.
ITU has a National Federation Coach Education Accreditation Programme in place whereby federations with existing coach education programmes can apply to ITU to have their federation programmes accredited. Currently three national federations have had their programmes accredited with ITU namely Australia (2008), Great Britain (2008) and Spain (2009). All coaches who obtain certifications in those countries since the date of the National Federation’s ITU accreditation are also recognised as an ITU certified coach. All ITU coaching certifications are valid for 4 years from the date of certification after which coaches must reapply for certification and submit the relevant documentation to ITU Sport Development for approval.
In order to grow the coach education programme further to service an even wider community within the sport, the following new courses have been developed for implementation in 2010:
A Youth Sports Leader course which aims to present a basic introduction to the sport of triathlon to school teachers and sport leaders working with youth and community groups has been added to the list of programmes offered by ITU. This 6 hours course makes use of materials included in the ITU level 1 manual and is the ideal course for new and emerging National Federations to offer in order to promote the sport of triathlon and equip prospective sports leaders with the basic skills to launch a triathlon programme in their local community.
To cater for the specific needs of Paratriathlon Coaches, ITU has introduced an IPTC (ITU Paratriathlon Coaching Certificate) which is a 6 hour optional elective course for coaches already in possession of an ITU level 1 or a level 2 certification or accreditation. This course will provide information for certified coaches on coaching matters specific to Paratriathletes.
An ITU Facilitator Certification has been developed which is a “Train the Trainer’ programme for ITU coach education course conductors. This course equips ITU level 1 and level 2 course facilitators with the necessary presentation and teaching skills to effectively present courses in order to maximise teaching and learning opportunities for participants.
The ITU level 3 High Performance course is an applied course that integrates sport sciences with triathlon specific preparation, planning and evaluation of the high performance triathlete. Coaches wanting to attend this course must be National Federation coaches already in possession of an ITU level 2 certification and currently coaching high performance triathletes that race in Continental Cups, World Cups or World Championship Series events with a focus long term on Olympic qualification. The course consists of 50 hours of theoretical course work and an additional requirement of 80 hours of practical to be completed after the course.
The ITU Level 1 and Level 2 coaching manuals have been extensively edited and have been given a new look to bring them in line with all the new ITU coaching materials.
Two triathlon specific DVD’s are also available.
The Try to Tri DVD (also available in Spanish) is an introduction to triathlon DVD specifically targets beginner level programmes.
A more advanced level training resource for junior athletes and coaches is The Triathlon Training Resource DVD which focuses on skill development and training for junior athletes and is especially useful for use in new and emerging triathlon programmes.
National Federations who want to make use of these materials for ITU accredited courses will be able to order the manuals and DVD’s online from the ITU website by the January 1st, 2010.