Australian help for swimming officials

Australian help for swimming officials SUVA, 18 OCTOBER 2017 (FIJI TIMES)--- Over the past four days 42 swim coaches from around Fiji took part in a upskilling workshop hosted by the Fiji Swimming Pacific Sports Partnership (PSP) Lets Swim programme.

The workshop has been held to train club coaches to be accredited and certified as coaches and instructors. PSP Let's Swim co-ordinator Trisa Cheer has been overseeing the workshop from Saturday to Tuesday after getting in touch with the Australian Swimming Coaches and Teachers Association (ASCTA) four years ago. Australian Haydn Belshaw has been coming several times a year since.

"Trisa got in contact and said we would like someone to come over and help train and educate our coaches so I was sent by ASCTA" Belshaw said. Over the weekend there have been three different courses. On Saturday and Sunday Belshaw ran an OSEP assessor course and an ASCTA mums and toddlers course. "We did an assessors course with Lets Swim development officers so that they can then go out and assess teachers, helping within the learn to swim programme."

On Monday and Tuesday Belshaw has been working with swim club coaches taking them through the ASCTA teachers of competitive strokes programme. "We have ten swim clubs in Fiji with clubs sending their coaches to become accredited and certified." After the program the results will go back to Australia to be officially certified. These programs are the only ones happening in order to advance swim training in Fiji.

"Currently we only have a few accredited coaches and we want to increase that number," Cheer said. "The competitive strokes programme is the "initial stage of learning to be coaches with the group mostly made up of ex-swimmers looking to stay in the sport" Belshaw said. With more than 300 registered swimmers and 3000 children going through PSP swim programmes, having qualified coaches is important.

"We also train teachers and community youth leaders so that they can take ownership of the programme and start them in their own schools." Cheer hopes that in running these programmes the skills taught will extend beyond the 42 people present over the past four days and extend into the wider community and schools....PACNEWS


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