By Erin Greene on 08/11/13 at 5:12 pm
In the heart of southern Puerto Rico, the small cozy town of Salinas is the home of the outstanding “Albergue Olímpico” (Olympic Hostel) which has all the facilities that high performance athletes need, including a 50m and 25m pool, quiet and calm roads, as well as a state-of-the-art track and several nature trails nearby. All of it in a wonderful green environment away from the chaos of big cities.
Right after the completion of PATCO Development Camp held in the Hostel, which welcomed athletes and coaches from around the country, the first ever ITU/Olympic Solidarity Level I Coaches Course started its activities in the premises of the Olympic Museum of Puerto Rico. The course is part of the assistance program for emerging countries towards the development of sport, supported by Olympic Solidarity through their National Olympic Committee.
Since triathlon started years ago in Puerto Rico, there has never been such opportunity. The Puerto-Rican Triathlon Federation (FPT) worked very hard in order to bring the project to Salinas and coaches were very excited for this chance to increase their specific knowledge on triathlon and all the correlated topics. The enthusiastic group of 20 coaches had a very busy schedule throughout the course due to the discussions in the theory sessions and an animated participation in all the proposed activities of the practical sessions. The level of involvement and commitment of the attending coaches were the highpoint of the course.
Mr. Fernando Delgado, president of the FPT, was very pleased with the curse and the participation of the coaches: “The course is a landmark for triathlon in Puerto Rico as we have been waiting for this project to arrive here on our island for a long time. Due to the combined efforts of the National Federation with our Olympic Committee and ITU, we are now having an chance to provide coaches an unique opportunity to get a lot of specific understanding of triathlon and then they will be able to apply it to develop beginner and youth athletes”.
According to the facilitator assigned for the course (Rodrigo Milazzo, BRA), the main goal of the project was to provide local coaches a suitable learning atmosphere where they could interact through discussions and to experience original triathlon training techniques and practice – this is translated into applied coaching. With that, it will be possible to focus on an overall athlete development process that will bring about positive effects and outcomes to the Puerto-Rican Triathlon.
The ITU/OS Level I Coaches Course is part of the ITU Development program, in conjunction with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), focused on the development of triathlon in emerging countries. Due to the efforts from OS and ITU, coaches, FPT and the Puerto-Rican Olympic Committee were very thankful for all the resources that made this project viable.