When I first met Steve for the interview about the position I had mentioned to him that I was interested in Cerebral Palsy and potentially wanting to do some research in the field. By week 4 Steve had introduced me to an athlete that had been constrained to a wheelchair due to a freak sky diving accident. With the intent of me developing a training program to teach him how to throw shotput. An opportunity like this, particularly for me is a dream come true and especially so early on. Meeting Elijah was truly an inspiration. Here is a kid that has had a passion for athletics and running his entire life. When he was younger he used to run marathons of up to 18km. He use to train by running a at least a mile every day. I have never seen a kid his age with so much motivation and drive. There was no way he was letting that wheelchair slow him down. He is truly an inspiration no matter how young or old you are there is something to be learnt from his passion for life and getting the most out of it no matter the circumstances. Then as he developed unfortunately the cerebral palsy developed to. That didn’t stop Elijah though. He still has that same passion for athletics and running, he will not let his disability hold him back. The first time I saw him he had a smile on his face and it stayed there the entire day he was at the field with everyone. He was making jokes with me and the other kids. He has a wonderfully supportive mother and family that understands his disability and his capabilities but aren’t afraid to let him push the boundaries and better himself and his disability. I look forward to working with him and seeing him develop into a competitive shot-putter and laughing alongside him as we do it.
With the AIS Athletics Track being closed, the UC Ginninderra Athletics Club is offering all athletes aged 12-years to Masters the chance to participate in the only grassroots competition in North Canberra for senior athletes this year. The Tigers are based in Belconnen on Ginninderra Drive.
There is free Club training sessions available on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at Charnwood Athletics Field from IAAF and Athletics Australia accredited Coaches in all event disciplines. Entry to the Track is paid by the Club through the generosity of our sponsors.
Members of the ACT Secondary Schools Track and Field team are most welcome to Come & Try with us.
Little Athletes (Under 12 to Under 17) can join the UC Tigers for free and wear their Little As uniform when competing. Older athletes have the biggest choice of registrations from grassroots social memberships to a full membership with AACT. The Club uniform is the best value in town at $25.
Athletics ACT has selected 132 athletes in one of their strongest teams ahead of the 2017 Australian All Schools Championships. Among the selected athletes are 23 Ginninderra Athletes (past and present) including registered members of Ginninderra Little Athletics Centre.
Among the new faces is first time State Representatives at a senior level Kayla Hetaraka, Nathaniel Halpin, Annick Theron, Thomas Brewer (former GLAC) and Paul Genders-Dibden.
Congratulations to every athlete who made the team and all the best for Nationals which is only 6 weeks ahead.
- 14G Sydney Shaw 3,000m Walk
- 14G Kayla Hetaraka Discus Shotput
- 14B James Lemon 800m 1500m High Jump
- 14B Nathaniel Halpin AWD 100m 200m Long Jump Shotput Discus
- U16G Holly Abbey 100m 200m
- U16G Rebecca Guest 100m 200m 400m
- U16G Annick Theron 100m
- U16G Molly Sturgiss 200m 400m 200m Hurdles
- U16G Hannah Cadden 400m 800m 3,000m 2,000m Steeple
- U16G Layla Rowntree 800m 1500m 3000m 2000m Steeple
- U16G Claire Solomon 1500m
- U16G Charlotte Rauraa Discus Hammer
- U16B Austin Tetteh 100m 200m 400m
- U16B Jacob Davill 800m
- U16B Raage Noor 3000m
- U16B Jacob Todd 2000m Steeple
- U16B Jeremy Maranan 100m Hurdles 200m Hurdles Long Jump
- U16B Eden Thomas AWD 100m 200m 400m
- U18G Angela Riach 3000m 2000m Steeple
- U18B Thomas Brewer 100m 200m
- U18B Mitchell Baker 5000m Walk Shotput
- U18B Paul Genders-Dibden High Jump
- U18B Stephen Fraser Discus Shotput Hammer
This was my first experience of the athletics meets held on the weekend. The motto of the club is Family Fun and Fitness. This was really felt whole heatedly on Saturday. The Charnwood field was just buzzing with good vibes and smiling faces on both parents and kids. There was something for everyone to be involved with even if you weren’t an athlete competing yourself. There were games set up for the really little kids and their parents. To keep both the parents and little brothers and sisters of the athletes entertained whilst they were off racing. The vibe was not overly competitive but more geared towards enjoying yourself and having fun. The organization of the events and day was superb. There were a few opening day issues with technology but everything was dealt with swiftly and competently as to not disrupt proceedings. Even I was encouraged to be involved in some of the events even though I had no prior experience with the events. No one seemed to care they just wanted me to get involved be a part of the fantastic day and enjoy myself. I do recommend coming down to Charnwood fields just to be a part of that atmosphere, its electrifying and I guarantee you will enjoy yourself even if you’re not an athlete.
After my experience on the weekend with the track meets Steve approached me with an idea. He wanted me to develop a weights program for the sprint athletes to improve their strength and explosiveness. Now this development of a program is something that is directly related to my profession and interest. I was excited to get started and develop a program for a coach rather than a professor. Because a coach can give me much better practical feedback. I was also very pleased that Steve presented me with this option as a way to develop and improve my own professional skills that I would be using throughout my career. I developed the program and had him evaluate and provide feedback. Which was both constructive and interesting because yet again it was a moment where I was able to see the transfer of theoretical knowledge to practical application. This was only by week 3 and Steve had moved from the general preparation phase of training to the skill specific phase of training.
This was the first week of sprint training. Going into sprint training from a coaching point of view I was a little bit more confident. I had already had some exposure to the techniques and science behind it during one of my University courses. So I understood their warm up and training routine from a performance development point of view. This in itself was a really nice experience. Because as a University student there is a common term amongst the students “Course Fatigue”. This is the point in your university studies where you start asking yourself, “I like what I am learning but I am getting a little bored of it and is this really what I want to do for the rest of my life”. So working with Steve and the sprinters in a real life practical setting and understanding the science behind it from day one was an amazing feeling. That feeling in itself reinforces the fact that all the hard work and study I have been doing is worth it.
I was worried about the athletes not accepting my knowledge and coaching as a lot of these people have been sprinting for a long time and bound to know more about the sport than myself. I found the complete opposite was true. Everyone participating in the sprint training are passionate about the sport and just want to get better. Meaning that they are more than happy to take on advice from anyone and everyone. For example something I found extremely heartwarming, is the fact that the age varies within the training squad. It is just so wonderful to see that no matter what age the person is everyone is willing and able to share their advice and lend helping hand. Whether that be an older guy/girl helping a younger kid out or vice versa. It just illustrates that idea that everyone has something to teach and learn, and that attitude is certainly harbored by both Steve and the club in general.
During this first week of training sessions Steve modeled my development off the athletes. What I mean by that is there are 4 stages of training in athletics, those are; general preparation, skill specific training, competition preparation, and transition. When I joined the athletes were in the general preparation phase. Steve began teaching me the basics about how to be a coach. Things like how to talk to your athletes, always compliment first and give constructive criticism after for example. Other things like always standing back and observing and recording so you can refer to it later. He taught me the general skills of being a coach whilst he was teaching his athletes the general skills of sprinting. Which made me feel like I wasn’t being thrown in the deep end and told to figure it out but rather guided and mentored the same way he does his athletes. Which also gives you the sense that you truly are being brought into the new team.