Monday, February 3, 2014

High Performance Committee Update

I'll be the first to admit that the High Performance Committee's (HPC) communication over the past few months has been lacking. We've been busy re-writing the Athlete Handbook, selection criteria, recruiting new committee members, finalizing a contract with Toni, reflecting on 2013, and looking forward to 2014. This isn't really the best excuse, since it's also our job to make sure you all know what we're doing to support our athletes. So, without further ado, here's an update of achievements throughout 2013, and our plans for 2014!

2013 was a busy year for the HPC. Here's a quick summary of our year:
  • We engaged Toni Louhisola in a volunteer capacity as the senior Team Canada coach. Toni worked mainly with the WOC athletes; however he did also work with some HPP athletes on a one-on-one basis. Toni did a great job connecting with athletes and working to improve their potential at WOC, considering the length of time they had to work together.
  • Toni Louhisola visited Canada for 5 weeks in May/June; beginning in New York for the Team Trials before heading to Ottawa, Calgary, Cranbrook, and Vancouver. Toni worked with HPP athletes and local club members. He held training sessions and presented his theory of “Orienteering Thinking”. 
  • We engaged Brent Langbakk as the National HPP Junior Coach for another year. Brent worked in an advisory role, successfully finding local coaches for each of the junior HPP athletes. Brent worked with the coaches to assist them in developing physical and technical training plans for the athletes. Brent stepped down from this role in the fall, and we have yet to find a replacement head coach. 
  • Both WOC and JWOC were a success this year, with some solid results from our athletes. Brian Graham was able to step in as JWOC coach, as Brent was unable to attend JWOC. From a logistics standpoint, Stefan Bergstrom and Meghan Rance did excellent work as team leaders for JWOC and WOC respectively. 
  • We attended to two appeals; both of which were dismissed by external arbitrators. 
  • We began a strategic planning process, for both short and long term planning. The HPC will be including athletes and other community members in this process over the coming months. 
  • The HPC conducted major reviews of several of its key policies and documents including the Athlete Handbook, Athlete Agreement, Selection Policies, and the Orienteering Canada Appeal Policy. These changes are reflected in the 2014 versions of all these documents.
There are two main areas of focus for the HPC - continuing the administrative support for our current programs and events, and planning and executing big picture items. With this in mind, here's a list of the items we'll be focusing on for 2014:

  • We will continue to support our athletes with the endless paperwork and logistics surrounding major European competitions, including World Cups, WOC, JWOC, and WUOC. We have an amazing team of volunteers who are assisting with this process ~ thanks to WOC Team Leader Meghan Rance, JWOC Team Leader Stefan Bergstrom, and Tori Owen, who's assisting with World Cup registrations. 
  • The Rising Star award will be presented again this year, but with a change to the application process. Now members of the orienteering community can nominate athletes who qualify for the award. Details can be found here
  • We will work with Canadian clubs to offer the Canada Cup Elite Series, as a means to encourage more high level, local competition for our athletes.
  • We are in the process of finalizing a 2-year contract with Toni Louhisola to work with the senior athletes for WOC 2014 and 2015. 
  • We are working to engage a coach to work with the junior athletes.
It's been a few years since Orienteering Canada released it's Long Term Athlete Development Guide. This year the HPC has started looking at supplementing the High Performance Program to with an LTAD Pathway to provide better support and competition opportunities aligned with the LTAD for athletes as they progress through its Learn to Compete, Train to Compete, and Train to Win stages. Stay tuned for details throughout the year.

As ever, we're always looking for positive and enthusiastic volunteers. We're looking for people to help with the day to day admin work, as well as those with experience who can help develop or support elite athlete programming. Please send an email to if you're interested. Likewise, if you have any questions, comments, ideas, or feedback surrounding high performance orienteering in Canada, please get in touch. We love to hear from you!

Talent + Dedication + Support  Performance + Growth

No comments:

Post a Comment