Training: In order to set up a coaching academy in the country, a pilot project focussing on training the coaches is underway in Thimphu.

A total of 20 coaches from 12 National Sports Federations (NSF) are taking part in the week-long programme at the office of Bhutan Amateur Athletic Federation.

The Foundation in Youth Sports Coaching Course is designed to communicate theoretical knowledge to the participants that would add to their technical knowhow on particular disciplines.

Programme coordinator, Namgay Wangchuk, said that to become a certified coach of any given discipline, technical and tactical knowledge as well as theoretical knowledge is important.

“Many of our coaches are technically sound but now they have to also be competent in theory,” he said. “Any individual who wishes to pursue a career in sports have to undergo this training.”

Participants had to sit an online examination to test their understanding of the topic.

Namgay Wangchuk said the programme is designed to address the shortage of qualified coaches in the NSFs and to promote quality training in the federations. “Currently there are limited number of certified coaches in our federations, which restricts us from taking the games to the masses,” he said. “This project will help us build a base for our long-term goal of establishing a coaches’ academy in the country.”

A participant from Bhutan Volleyball Federation, Tshewang Nidup, is the only coach the federation has currently. He said that while most of the participants are technically sound in their respective disciplines, they lack the academic aspect. “Theory is an essential part of coaching. The quality of athletes we produce will depend on theory and practical sessions we impart,” he said.

Namgay Wangchuk said that by the end of the training, seven coaches will be selected who will then start training the new batch of coaches. “This will be our initial step in starting a coaches’ academy,” he said.

The programme that began on February 29 is being organized by the Bhutan Olympic Committee with support from Swiss Agency for Cooperation and Development Project.

The training will conclude tomorrow.

Younten Tshedup