FIG Artistic Gymnastics Age Group Programme
Singapore (SIN), January 21 – 25, 2013
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, January 29, 2013: Singapore followed the countries of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Yemen and Indonesia in hosting and completing the fifth of a series of Age Group Programme Camps that are being offered by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) to those countries that had indicated an interest and willingness to adopt and implement the FIG Age Group Programme.
Twenty-seven coaches attended this five-day training camp that was held on January 21 – 25, 2013. They represented four countries – China, Hong Kong, Philippines and Singapore. Twelve of the coaches were there for Men’s (MAG) and fifteen for Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG).
The FIG expert and course leader for this camp was Jeff Thomson who is on tour to lead three such camps in a row – Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia. He is the former Men’s Programme Director of Canada and Education Director of New Zealand. He was joined by Tim Lees a former Australian Olympian, one of the Academy Programme’s first experts form 2002 and a high performance men’s and women’s coach.
These camps are intended to expose as many coaches as possible from the host country to the FIG Age Group Programme so that it will be implemented and understood uniformly.
The Age Group programme includes a testing and monitoring programme for MAG and WAG physical abilities and technical skills as well as a complete competition programme with modified optional rules for age-group gymnasts and compulsory exercises for all ages. It also includes a variety of additional information related to developing a systematic gymnastics programme that can lead to high performance. The programme was developed by Hardy Fink (CAN)for the competition programme, Dieter Hofmann (GER) for the testing programme and Carol-Angela Orchard (CAN) for the dance and choreographic content. The just completed second edition of the published programme and manual was used at this camp.
The five-day camp focused primarily on practical work in the gymnasium with coaches and their gymnasts on the various technical and physical tests, the compulsory exercises and the modified optional rules. Some theory background was provided to promote the FIG philosophy of protecting gymnasts during the growth years.
Thank you to Philip Chan, the President of the Singapore Gymnastics Federation and his staff of workers and volunteers. Special thanks go to Ellie Klidzia for all of her efforts in advance and during the camp and to Puay Liang Sng for hosting the camp in his gymnasium.
The introduction of the Age Group Programme continues in the next two weeks with camps in Malaysia, Jordan, Panama, El Salvador and Dominican Republic.