22 April, 2012

Qatar hosts FIG Age Group Programme Development Camp 2012

FIG Age Group Doha QAT 2012DOHA, (QAT), AGU Office, April 22, 2012: The FIG Age Group Project was introduced on April 17-19, 2012, for the French and English speaking gymnastics developing countries of North and Central-Africa.

The event was hosted by Qatar in the city of Doha Aspire Academy Dome. The federations were invited to attend with a MAG and a WAG coach fully funded by the FIG with the support of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). 12 Asian federations confirmed their participation but finally only 10 federations attend the course with a total of twenty-two coaches coming from: Bangladesh, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Nepal, Palestine, Yemen, Iraq, Pakistan, Lebanon and Qatar. 

The Age Group programme includes a testing and monitoring programme for MAG and WAG physical abilities and technical skills as well as a complete multi-level competition programme with modified 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 testing programme was developed by well-known coach and clinician Dieter Hofmann (GER) and the competition programme by Hardy Fink (CAN), the FIG Director of Education and Academy Programmes and, for the choreographic and artistic elements, by many time Olympic-coach and consultant to the British Team, Carol Angela Orchard.

These three also served as the FIG experts for this course with Hardy Fink as course leader.
Each of them presented different components of the age group project and presented additional theory and practical lectures related to artistry, gymnastics systems, long term athlete development, issues related to intense training of young gymnasts, biomechanics, and strength and flexibility training to enhance the understanding and education of the participating coaches. It was a very intense three days of teaching and learning for all. Because of the languages of the participants, all of the lecture and resource material was provided in French and English.

The participating federations will now study the components of this new project offered by the FIG with their federation leaders and decide if they wish to adopt and implement it within their countries and regions. If the decision is positive, then each federation will be offered an annual monitoring and updating camp in their own countries so that more coaches and gymnasts can be exposed to the information and their progress monitored by FIG experts. In the coming weeks, the FIG will incorporate the learning and observations from these introductory seminars to make small modifications to the program.

Many thanks for the continuing support of gymnastics development and the organisational work go to Qatar Technical Director, Anis Saoud and to Qatar Gymnastics Federation President and FIG Council Member Mr. Ali Al-Hitmi who attended every moment of the course to help assure its success.

FIG Age Group Doha QAT 2012