PR2 - 231 participants from 74 countries discover the secrets behind success


231 delegates from 74 nations had a unique opportunity to gather for the first edition of the FINA World Swimming Coaches Conference, held in Singapore (SIN) from January 15-17, 2009. During three days of discussion many successful coaches shared their experiences with an audience interested in learning the latest trends in swimming training. The mentors of 2008 Olympic gold medal winners Kosuke Kitajima (JPN), Stephanie Rice (AUS) and Leisel Jones (AUS) explained how much work and preparation their athletes face on a daily basis for achieving optimal performances.

Other examples of training programmes were presented, such as the case of Tao Li (SIN), the team of Canada, the development of swimming schools in Malaysia or in the importance of early planning for success.

“This conference demonstrates our desire to involve the Swimming coaches as key players of our sport. We need their support so we can have the best swimmers represented as often as possible in FINA events. We need to be visible all year long, year by year and not only every four years during Olympic Games. Together we need to ‘think big’”, said FINA President Mustapha Larfaoui in his opening speech.

Besides the coaching presentations, the participants were briefed about upcoming FINA challenges: the FINA Strategic Plan 2009-2013, the opportunities created by the TV coverage of FINA events, the organisation of the FINA World Championships in 2009 in Rome and the 1st Youth Olympic Games in 2010 in Singapore, and last but not least, an update on the new FINA Doping Control Rules enforced since January 1, 2009.

Another key moment of this conference was the much-awaited and appreciated debate between Mark Schubert, Head Coach of USA, and Alan Thompson, his counterpart for Australia, about the programmes of the two swimming powerhouses on the planet.

Given the enthusiasm generated during these three days, the first edition of this Conference will certainly not be the last one!

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