Eng­land Ath­let­ics’ drive for new coaches

Athletics Weekly - - Contents -

ENG­LAND Ath­let­ics hopes a new coach­ing ini­tia­tive can get 10,000 new faces into ath­let­ics and run­ning coach­ing by 2020.

Dina Asher-Smith helped launch the #go­coach scheme last week – an ideal face of the ini­tia­tive given that her great sea­son was or­ches­trated by John Blackie, the same coach she first met as a nine-year-old at Black­heath & Brom­ley in 2004.

“The re­la­tion­ship between any coach and ath­lete, whether at elite or begin­ner level, is piv­otal in en­abling you to be the best ver­sion of your­self both on and off the track,” she said.

“I hope the cam­paign will in­spire peo­ple of all ages and back­grounds to think about be­com­ing a coach or run leader. Our fan­tas­tic sport wouldn’t sur­vive with­out them.”

Blackie added: “Be­ing a coach is in­cred­i­bly re­ward­ing. Not only are you able to share achieve­ments, but you’re also there to sup­port and mo­ti­vate dur­ing any low mo­ments.

“I’ve been lucky enough to work with Dina for 14 years now and share her jour­ney to be­ing the fastest Bri­tish woman in his­tory. The joys of coach­ing don’t just ap­ply to work­ing with elite ath­letes, though. Be­ing a vol­un­teer coach or leader is an ex­tremely worth­while role. I would en­cour­age ev­ery­one to get in­volved.”

Asher-Smith says of her coach: “He’s pa­tient with me, espe­cially when I don’t get things right for the first time, which hap­pens quite a lot! He’s like a sec­ond dad to me and has com­pletely changed my life.

“To just see all his plans, hard work and vi­sion come to fruition, espe­cially with the 200m in Ber­lin, was so spe­cial.”

A new web­site – go­coach. eng­lan­dath­let­ics.org – gives de­tails of the coach­ing path­way and qual­i­fi­ca­tions, plus in­for­ma­tion on anti-dop­ing, how to book var­i­ous cour­ses and how to say thanks to your coach.

Suc­cess­ful part­ner­ship: Dina Asher-Smith and coach John Blackie

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