This is a special post. One which I’ve been waiting a while to make. I am proud to announce what I believe will be a revolution in the way track and field coaches are educated in this country – the USTFCCCA Track & Field Academy (the site is still in Beta). The Track & Field Academy is the product of many hours of work by some of the top coaching educators in the country. Designed by my great friend and mentor, Boo Schexnayder, the curriculum and course structure has been built from the ground up with updated curriculum presented in a more pedagogically sound manner. Not only is the curriculum tighter and more up-to-date than any others currently being offered, but it improves on other options in the following ways:
- The Track and Field Academy is the only professional improvement program in the sport operated by a coaching organization, with a unique understanding of the problems and issues that coaches deal with in their daily school settings. Our curriculum demonstrates this understanding.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that presents a sequential, organized program of instruction that addresses every aspect of coaching track & field and cross country. While many programs cover the technical aspects of coaching, the Track and Field Academy provided opportunities for professional improvement in many other areas, such as budgeting, recruiting, meet management, and many others.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that provides a true multilevel certification program. We do not grant certificates of completion, but true certification of your training and coaching abilities at these levels and in various competencies. This is an invaluable aid in a coach’s professional development and career advancement.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that is broad based, addressing needs in many areas and at many levels. This represents great opportunity for ongoing continuing education, without the need to exit the program once certifications are achieved. The Academy offers everything from complete certification programs to brief seminars dealing with a myriad of issues in coaching.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that uses up to date curriculum designed by and consistently updated by highly successful coaches. The curriculum is well organized, logically sequenced, and uses the most up to date graphics and visual aids to assist the learner.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that is designed and taught by coaches with extraordinary records of on the track success, as well as high levels of experience and success in coaching education programs and the classroom setting.
- The Track and Field Academy is the only program that offers a variety of delivery options, from face to face learning with top flight instructors to convenient online educational opportunities with user friendly curricula. The Academy uses electronic delivery of course materials, enabling students to take home video clips and graphics as well as text.
As many of you know, I am passionate about coaching education. Much of my success had is due to what I have learned from my mentors and there work as educators of coaches. I love to teach and give back to the coaching community because it was and continues to be so instrumental in my professional development. Several months ago, I resigned from all my executive positions within the USATF’s Coaching Education division. Things were moving in a direction that I didn’t feel was best for the storied USATF Coaching Education program. This was a hard decision as I’d been a USATF Level 2 & 3 instructor and a member of the executive board for the past 9 years. It was a difficult decision but one that was necessary. I have continued to teach several times a month at Level 1 schools and other venues but I halted the curriculum redesign I was doing for the schools and skipped teaching at this summer’s Level 2 school for the first time since I first became involved in the program. I wasn’t the only one. In fact, many other high profile instructors also bowed out of teaching at these schools. That brings us to today….and the start of this new avenue for coaching professional development. The Track and Field Academy is the revolution that will provide coaches in this country a broad based yet comprehensive protocol for coaches to gain the necessary technical and logistical skills of our sport. We have several Track and Field Academy sessions planned in the upcoming months. I am excited to be teaching the very first one in Fort Worth, TX on December 3rd-4th and another at my training center in Raleigh, NC on February 4th-5th. If you have any questions about the program please post to the forum and I’ll answer them as they come. Registration for the courses will open shortly.