FORMER internationals M. Vadivellan and Narinder Singh were among the 24 participants of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) Coaches Education and Certification System Level One programme.
The 12-day course was initiated by the Federal Territory Kuala Lumpur Athletics Association (FTKLAA) and Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF) with support from the Universiti Putra Malaysia Sports Academy.
Besides Vadivellan, the 1,500m gold medallist in the 1987 Korat SEA Games, and Narinder, the winner of the 20km walk event in the 1997 and 1999 SEA Games, the other participants were M. Jayapragasam, K. Nagarajan, Soh Wai Ching, Christopher Soosai, Abdul Hakim Yunus, Chong Hee Kin, Okafor Diamond Ogbeide, Helton Culas, Abas Kasim, Mohamad Nazri Mat Irani, Hajim Amin Salleh, Jeremy Carlson, S. Logathasan, Kiew Sieng Eik, Goh Ching Chee, Jad Adrian Washif, V. Balamurali, Albert Tan Yi Wey, Kok Hui Wei, R. Subendran, Zura Omar and Raynold Peter.
The instructors were Zainal Abas and Mohamad Azam Abu Hashim while former international S. Muthiah, a three time 1,500m winner in the SEA Games, was the co-ordinator. Muthiah, a former national long and middle distance coach, is also a FTKLAA vice-president.
Both Zainal and Mohamad Azam, IAAF certified coaching instructors, covered the topics – general theory, event specific theory, planning, practical – intro of events and practical coaching (practice by coaches- and all participants had to go through a practical assessment, evaluation programme and written examination.
FTKLAA president Leslie Armstrong said the participants were a privileged lot to attend the programme.
“We had about 50 registering for the course but as per IAAF requirements we had to choose only 24. We are confident the successful participants will play an active role in the development and promotion of athletics at grassroots.
“Their initiative will reflect in the state and eventually the country progress in athletics,’’ said Leslie.
MAF president Datuk Abdul Karim Ibrahim said all 24 participants had shown their active interest in athletics.
“All of them have also passed. But now the most important thing is that they should not be proud of having the certificate. Instead they should go to the ground and identify young talents.
“It is their responsibility to be part of the state development and coaching programmes.
“Today we have many foreign coaches in Malaysia. But the local coaches, especially, those who have attended this coaching programme to prove themselves. Their service will certainly be appreciated and they can also look forward to be active in the national coaching programme.
“We have to thank FTKLAA as well as UPM for all their assistance in organising this programme,’’ said Abdul Karim.
Muthiah, who has a Level 4 IAAF diploma in coaching, said the MAF would be looking into organising more coaching courses.
“All those who passed the Level 1 coaching course will be eligible to attend the next level. We have plans to organise the Level 2 course next year. But we will be looking at the coaches who are active as well as committed,’’ added Muthiah.