Swimming Canada announces new Coaching Mentoring Initiative

Federations News

A new coaching development program that recognizes the considerable value of the mentoring process in facilitating a coach’s development was announced on Nov. 17, 2009 by Swimming Canada.

“Coach mentoring is seen as a critical component of the coach’s developmental pathway,” said Ken Radford, Technical Director for Swimming Canada. “To this end, Swimming Canada has secured funds to support mentorship opportunities.”


This three-tier program will focus on International opportunities with the senior teams and junior teams, as well as domestic mentoring occasions within the High Performance Centres and Swim Academies in Canada.

“We have great coaching knowledge in Canada, and one of the best ways to develop our young coaches is to expose them to what our best coaches are doing while training or competing, and really learn from them,” said Pierre Lafontaine, CEO and National Coach for Swimming Canada.

National Coach Pierre Lafontaine and his coaching staff at World Championships have already offered hands’ on experience to a young coach within the senior national program competing in Rome.

As well, National Junior Coach Ken McKinnon will benefit from the expertise of Dave Johnson and Randy Bennett in mentoring a coach while attending the 2009-10 Junior and Youth Tour in Australia.

One fully funded opportunity is offered to a Canadian swim coach to mentor at each of the two Swimming Canada National Training centres in Vancouver and Montreal, as well as the High Performance Centres Swim Academies in Victoria, Calgary and Toronto. A total of five mentorships funds of $2,500 are offered.

Lafontaine says that his Canadian coaches will definitely get valued lessons at home. Internally renowned coaches Tom Johnson and Jozsef Nagy of the National Swim Centre in Vancouver, Benoit Lebrun National Swim Centre in Montreal, Randy Bennett of the Victoria Swim Academy, Jan Bidrman and Mike Blondal of the Calgary Swim Academy and John Rodgers of the Toronto High Performance Swim Centre are amongst the mentors that are eager to develop the next Olympic medalist, but also craft the next wave of Olympic coaches.

Details on the Swimming Canada 2009-10 Coaching Mentorship Program can be found online at https://www.swimming.ca/CoachingMentorshipProgram.

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