Tuesday, February 24, 2009

USAT Coaching Program


~Zane Castro

I spent the last week away from Jack and Adam’s Bicycles to re-certify, or make my USA Triathlon Certification current. There is no better way to do so than at the US Olympic Training Center, in Colorado Springs. The venue alone inspires growth. And this time of year with Pikes Peak as a back drop, it's such an awakening time.

As one of the earliest members of the USA Triathlon Coaching Body, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know a number of the U.S. National Program Coaches and even a few athletes. Over the years much turmoil has arisen over: drafting and non-drafting events; IronMan versus the ITU; the overall structure of coaching in the U.S.; and USAT’s role in the entire process. Additionally, there was debate of the centralization of a national program or whether or not we should have a national program.

The week brought world class presenters and coaches covering topics on some of the newest data on running and mechanics, mental preparation, and the broadest scope of periodisation I’ve ever been exposed to in over 12 years of coaching. It was all wrapped in the new decentralized format with a huge change toward the growth and support to the coaches themselves.

I walked away from coaching full time nearly 4 years ago because of the centralization and limitations to coaches desiring to excel at the elite level; this past week was an encouraging step for me to return to what I know I was made to do. The “how” is yet to be considered, but for now I’m pleased to have completed the process and to see the program come around to the new direction that has proven to have worked well for U.S. sports.

I look forward to seeing you on the fit stand at the shop.

Zane Castro

Jack and Adam’s Fit Specialist
USA Triathlon Level II Coach


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