More Than Medals Program in Thailand Proves Successful

By Tim Foley

SUKHOTHAI, Thailand (May 31) -- United World Wrestling this month launched its More than Medals in Thailand. Aided by the IOC Sport Department and the Olympic Solidarity program the initiative’s aim was to start the process of developing well-rounded, long-term development programs for cadets and coaches of active national federations.

In addition to hands-on training session, the program was highlighted by an Olympic Education course and English lessons.

A ten day event, the More than Medals program included a training camp for cadets and a technical course for Level 1 coaches. In total 60 athletes and 49 coaches from 19 countries attended the course, which was held by the Sukhothai Institute of Physical Education in Thailand.

“There are not that many international events in southeast Asia,” said Chari Onanong a women’s coach from Thailand. “More than Medals motivated us to develop wrestling in Thailand. It’s extremely important for the development of wrestling for us to be closer to athletes and coaches on all levels.”

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The training camp offered athletes and coaches a unique learning experience under the guidance of United World Wrestling educators and high level experts in coaching.

“It was great to see coaches and athletes from different countries working together for wrestling,” said United World Wrestling Regional Developmental Officer Andrey Vorontsov. “We achieved good results with this project and it will have a positive impact on development of wrestling in Asia.”

Two-time Olympic medalist Tonya Verbeek was also in attendance as a United World Wrestling Ambassador. The Canadian coach added additional on-the-mat expertise and insight while teaching from the classroom setting.

Le camp d'entrainement a offert aux athlètes et au coach l'opportunité unique d'apprendre sous la tutelle des éducateurs d'United World Wrestling et des experts de haut niveau en coaching.

"C'était génial de voir les coachs et les athlètes de différents pays travailler ensemble pour la lutte" déclare le responsable du développement régional d'United World Wrestling Andrey Vorontsov. "Nous avons réalisé de beaux résultats avec ce projet qui aura un impact positif sur le développement de la lutte en Asie."

La double médaillée olympique Tonya Verbeek était également présente en tant qu'Ambassadrice d'United World Wrestling. La coach canadienne a pu faire profiter les inscrits de son expérience sur le tapis et de ses conseils tout en enseignant.