|The Bestmed Madibaz Athletics Club, in conjunction with Eastern Province Athletics, will present a much-needed series of coaching courses at Daniel Pienaar Technical High School in Uitenhage next month.
Running from January 10 to 12, the series for coaches and athletes will consist of courses in three categories, to be held simultaneously.
One will be a clinic over all three days, aimed at coaches and athletes. In additional programmes, two courses will be presented for those who aspire to become qualified coaches under Athletics South Africa.
Madibaz athletics manager Nellis Bothma said there was a strong demand for courses such as these in the Eastern Cape. The last one in the region was held in 2010.
“There is a huge need for students and teachers to be given a chance to attend courses such as these,” he said.
“In past years, they have had to attend clinics in other provinces, but now they have a chance to improve their knowledge of coaching in their own region.”
Bothma added that the Madibaz Athletics Club were working with EP Athletics to provide the opportunity for coaches to learn the latest techniques, which they could then apply to athletes at their institutions and schools.
“The course is open to anyone in South Africa and the main aim is to provide knowledge for coaches with the long-term view of improving our athletes across the board.”
The clinic would provide 70 per cent practical knowledge and 30 per cent theoretical information, he said.
“Coaches who are not keen to do the ASA courses can attend this clinic and athletes can enter individually or come with other athletes or their coaches.”
He emphasised that the clinic was different to the coaching courses on offer.
Those who plan to attend will have to choose one of the categories – the coaching clinic or either the ASA Level 1 or ASA Level 2 coaches’ course.
“The Level 1 course is for coaches and athletes who wish to obtain a coaching certificate from ASA. It is open to everyone,” said Bothma.
The course will have four sections – jumps, throws, sprints and hurdles, and middle and long-distance running.
He said attendees were not expected to do any physical activity and coaches would receive an ASA certificate if they passed the open book exam.
Minimum requirements for the Level 2 course were having a Level 1 certificate, having coached for at least two years as a qualified Level 1 coach and having coached at least two athletes who competed in a national championship, said Bothma.
“The Level 2 exam is more advanced and will have a pass mark of 70 per cent,” he added.
The closing date to enter for the courses is January 7.
The Bestmed Madibaz coaches involved in the coaching clinic will be Nico Bakkes (sprints), Leonardo de Villiers (middle-distance), Francisco de Vega (high jump), Karel Gerber (long and triple jump), Ischke Senekal (discus), Jacobus van Zyl (discus), Vernon Oosthuizen (javelin), Zirk Kemp (hurdles), Charlie Koen (hammer throw) and Nellis Bothma (co-ordinator of coaching).
The coaches for the ASA courses will be Hugo Badenhorst (jumps and theory), Gerrie Posthumus (sprints), Juan Strydom (hurdles), Marna van der Merwe (throws) and Ilse Wicksell (middle and long-distance).