Eleven candidates, from a range of different backgrounds attended the ten day course. Many of whom had only just started working at Oman Sail, some with minimal practical sailing experience. The Omani candidates have been selected through an intensive learn to sail programme organised and facilitated by Ail Al Shuhaimi. A number of the course sailors have been involved in the project for some time but as part of the race support team and this was their first transition from racing into coaching.
Content of the course was designed so that on completion the candidates had the knowledge to be able to introduce people to sailing in both two person (RS Vision, Laser Vago) and one person sailing craft (RS Q'Ba, Laser).
For pictures of the course please go to our ISAF Connect to Sailing Facebook page here.
The first five days were spent keeping practical sailing exercises and coaching techniques simple, looking at introducing the basic concepts sailing to beginners. The Rockley International Trainers showed the Omani Coach Candidates the principles behind team teaching and how to organize effective learning experiences.
The following five days was spent with the candidates having a go at running their own sessions in both two person and one person boats. This was a steep learning curve and they all committed to putting 100% effort into each session, taking feedback constructively and using it to develop their skills. This attitude to learning was evident throughout the course and both Andy Smith and Tom Wilson, the Rockley International Trainers were very impressed by the Omani commitment and energy for assimilating any information they were given .
ISAF Trainer Tom Wilson said of the Omani candidates, "Having a group of individuals that are all keen to learn and assimilate information and advice passed onto them from more than one coach is wonderful.
"The Omani sailors all worked very hard to develop their own styles of Coaching and over the ten days we spent with them have shown a huge increase in not only Coaching skills but also personal technical sailing skills. If this level of dedication is upheld then there is no end to the achievements that they can accomplish."
By the final day and having seen a good mixture of conditions making things challenging for personal sailing and the delivery of sessions, the candidates were ready to put some of their new found skills into practice, teaching other Omanis and perhaps even those from around the world that come to visit Oman and take part in watersports in this friendly and culturally diverse country..
The Oman Sail project has come on a long way since it started with previous Coach candidates and the new wave of coaches ready to help expand the project and introduce more people to the sport.
Neil Coxon, Director of Training at Oman Sail, said of the course, "Having our Instructors at Oman Sail trained to internationally recognized standards means a great deal to us.
"Oman Sail has a strong relationship with the Ministry of Sport Affairs in Oman [The ISAF Member National Authority] and as such is keen to maintain the highest level of training possible. With ISAF Connect to Sailing Partner Rockley International and the ISAF Trainers we have been able to benefit from exactly this.'"
Both the RS Vision and RS Q'Ba dinghies used in Oman have recently been included in the new ISAF Learn to Sail Training Programme Recommended Training Boat initiative. For more information on this please go to the dedicated ISAF Website page here.
For more information on how your MNA could benefit from a Technical Course for Coaches or any other Training Initiatives why not get in touch with the ISAF Training and Development Manager, Dan Jaspers here.
Sponsor Partners of the ISAF Connect to Sail scheme and training provider of choice for the ISAF Training Scholarship Course, Rockley International is continually working to develop watersports globally. For more information go to their website here.