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Swimming Canada’s coach development programs set to launch for 2022

News –

By: Rebecca Cheverton

Swimming Canada’s 2022 coach development programs will be kicking off on Feb. 2. A total of 64 coaches will have the opportunity for professional development through a series of virtual sessions either through the Select or Advanced Coaches Group.

Since 2014, Swimming Canada has developed and provided a number of professional development opportunities through the Select Coaches Group with the aim of developing a sustainable stream of High Performance Coaches. The program is an integral part of Swimming Canada’s mission to be amongst the world leading swimming nations.

In addition to this group, the Advanced Coaches Group, which was developed last year, is catered to coaches that Swimming Canada has worked with over the last number of years, many who have been members of the Select Coaches Group in the past.

Marta Belsh, who has been coaching for almost 25 years, has been a member of the Select Coaches Group and will be a part of the Advanced Coaches Group again this year. The coach from the Fredericton Aquanauts Swim Club, explained the program has been a great opportunity to gain sport specific coaching knowledge and to help support her athletes and program.

“Swimming in general is constantly advancing and changing, like all other sports. Being part of the program helped me stay current and relevant to all those changes,” said Belsh. “It was also an opportunity for network and connection especially during [the] pandemic where so many times we ended up in isolation.”

This year’s program will be run with Elton Fernandes, Sport Scientist with Canadian Sport Institute Ontario and Physiologist with Swimming Canada’s High Performance Centre-Ontario. He will work with the Advanced Coaches Group during two virtual sessions to develop a Targeted Training Set Document.

“I’m really excited for this year’s Select Coaches program and looking forward to the sets the Advanced Coaches Group will develop for our Swimming Canada Targeted Training Sets document,” said Ken McKinnon, National Development Coach and lead of the Select Coaches Group. “With Elton’s leadership I’m confident the document will be a useful and practical tool.”

Martin Gingras, of Montreal’s Pointe-Claire Swim Club, will be a member of the Advanced Coaches Group for the second year in row. Gingras, who has been coaching for over 25 years, said he is really interested in this year’s topic and thinks it will be a lot of fun.
“The next part is going to be more about physiology […]. It’s going to be something that I will be challenged [on] because this is what I do every day. I will for sure learn new things from talking with somebody who understands and studies the human body,” said Gingras. “I’m going to be asked to explain why I’m doing certain things in my program and that person will challenge me.”

The Targeted Training Set Document developed on the Advanced Coaches Group sessions will be the foundation for three further calls with the Select Coaches Group. Elton Fernandes will also work with this group and will focus on energy systems, targeted set design and the progression of key sets over the course of a macro-cycle.

“Using last summer’s Select Coaches Program format as a guideline we’ve developed a template that will highlight leadership from our Advanced Coaches and lots of opportunity for discussion in small groups of likeminded coaches focussing on set design and set progression development,” said McKinnon. “Two key areas of technical content for coaches.”

Gingras said that being part of these coaching groups has been a valuable opportunity for him to continue to grow as a coach. He explained that after coaching for 25 years it would be easy to continue doing the same thing in his program but he wants his next 20 years of coaching to be better than the last. That is why he takes every opportunity to continue learning about swimming, coaching and connecting with other coaches.

“I think it’s like a slingshot for the rest of my coaching career,” said Gingras.

Belsh also sees the program as having a big impact that will help her with the rest of her coaching career.

“Having sport specific information and application is hard to find so this is a wonderful opportunity. I love learning and expanding my own coaching knowledge,’ said Belsh. “Being selected to the program is a privilege and it gives me motivation and confidence to pursue my coaching career further.”

This first session for the Advanced Coaches Group will take place on Feb. 2 and the Select Coaches Group will begin on April 27.

Appointed Coaches:

Select Coaches Group

Name Club Prov
Allen, Ryan CNBO NB
Babi, Endi BTSC ON
Baker, Judy WDSC BC
Bates, Miranda TCSC NS
Bennett, Haley RAC BC
Bergeron, Marie TORP QC
Blais, Alexandre SHER QC
Blouin, Jonathan SAMAK QC
Bond, Paulina WES ON
Burton, Haylie WCW ON
Chantaj, Mark SRAYS AB
Chung, Vincent CHENA BC
Cormier, Chris HTAC NS
Daly, Justin SPART BC
Dawson, Alex GPP AB
D’Souza, Brett ESWIM ON
Earle, Duffy MPM NL
Ellul, Chris SCAR ON
Gaudreau, Jaimie PRSC AB
Hitchings, Steven GOLD SK
Hyslop, Janet KSS ON
Keith, Vicki VVF ON
King , Savannah McGill QC
Laoubi, Salim ELITE QC
Lapointe, Nick UCSC AB
Lavallière, Jean-Michel CHP-QUE QC
Longtin, Dominique CAMO QC
Macdonald, Amanda ROCS ON
Mcleod, John TBT ON
McGrann, Mark HTAC NS
Melanson, Melanie CVAC NB
Miles, Zoe SWAT NS
Moores, Sierra UBC BC
Munro, Baylee OSC AB
Nichols, Laura GMAC ON
Nieuwstad, Craig RODS SK
Panizza, Tommaso MANTA MB
Poirier, Amélie RED QC
Ramirez, Roman SJL NF
Renaud, Olivier WS ON
Rolland, Nadine LLOU QC
Roy-L’Écuyer, Chrystèle NN QC
Serediak, Lesley OSC AB
Simonson, Carl UCSC AB
Sirup, Leanne DST BC
Stewart, Jy PSW BC
Toro, Eddie NYAC ON
Varga, Edit NEW ON
Wiechec, Sonia CAMO QC
Wilson, Scott VPSC BC
Zucchi, Lucien RDCSC AB

Advanced Coaches Group

Name Club Prov
Allen, Jason GO ON
Arkhurst, Greg CAMO QUE
Belsh, Marta FAST NB
Birmingham, Paul EKSC AB
Brooks, Michael NN Que
Burton, Don OSA ON
Gingras, Martin PCSC QC
Henze, Dean SLSC ON
Hoeben, Tina KISU BC
Johnson, Wendy CASC AB
Novak, Robert ESWIM ON
Pettifer, Robert RAPID BC
Tissira, Abderrahmane SFU SK