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Top coaches head wheelchair basketball clinic

Developing homegrown talent priority for future

Organizers of the upcoming wheelchair basketball coaching clinic are excited to be hosting some of the top coaches in the country and hope that it could be a turning point for Powell River Ravens team.

Lindsay Peake is program manager for Powell River Disability Sport Club, a local non-profit organization established after Powell River hosted the BC Disability Games in 2007. The club promotes local para-sports.

She has been working in coordination with BC Wheelchair Basketball Society to set up level one clinics within the National Coach Certification Program (NCCP). NCCP is a program launched in 1974 and delivered in partnership with the government of Canada, provincial governments and sport organizations. The coaching clinics are designed to meet the needs of a wide range of coaches, from first-timers to head coaches of national teams. The clinics help people develop their coaching skills, train in ethical decision making and develop knowledge about sport safety. Peake is hoping that more people in Powell River will be interested in coaching wheelchair basketball as a result.

There will be 12 people taking the course from around the province. Three are from Powell River, while the rest come from Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland, with the possibility of one participant attending from Kamloops.

“I’m hoping it’s a refresher for me,” said Peake, who took the course when it was offered in Vancouver two years ago.

For Peake, these clinics are important for the future of Ravens wheelchair basketball in Powell River as the team doesn’t currently have a coach. “We’re trying to develop our own crop of coaches that we can pull from for our day-to-day requirements,” said Peake. “We’re hoping that maybe one of them will want to step up.” Even though Peake has been a coach for the team in the past, she feels more comfortable as a program manager.

If the team has more coaches and practices in a more organized fashion, Peake believes they could join the BC Wheelchair Basketball Society Division Two league. “It’s more recreational, but we have had games that were quite competitive,” she said.

Tim Frick and Marni Abbott-Peter will head up the three days of coaching clinic workshops. Frick, a resident of Pender Island, BC, served as the head coach of the Canadian Senior Women’s Wheelchair Basketball Team from 1990 to 2009, leading the team to three Paralympic gold medals. Abbott-Peter was a member of Frick’s gold medal-winning team, who now lives in Vancouver and has been coaching wheelchair basketball since 1993.

The coaching clinic will run on Saturday through Monday, February 9, 10 and 11 at Brooks Secondary School. Although most places for the clinic are already filled, Peake said that if there is someone interested in participating there may be one or two places available. For more information, readers can contact Peake at 604.483.8387 or by email [email protected].