In addition to the competition on the water, the recent IFDS Two-Person Keelboat World Championship in Singapore also provided an ideal opportunity for the region to groom new national sailing classifiers for persons with disability.
From 20-22 March, preceding the IFDS Two-Person Keelboat Worlds, an IFDS International Classification Seminar was held to train professionals interested in becoming classifiers sailing.
Organized by the Disability Classification and Research Centre (DCRC), the seminar took place at the regatta venue, the SAF Yacht Club - Changi in Singapore. Spanning across three days, the accredited seminar was conducted by trainers experienced in sailing classification for persons with disability, including IFDS Chief International Classifier Stephen WILSON from Australia, as well as International and National Classifiers such as Peter ANATASSIASIS from Australia, Ben TAN from Singapore and Charles SIMPSON who flew in from Canada.
The course syllabus introduced general information about the IFDS Functional Classification System and included classification examinations as well as practical sessions such as medical bench examination, boat observations and on-the-sea observations.
Drawing five participants from Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore who were either sports physicians or physiotherapists, this course provided them an opportunity to be appointed as national classifiers for their respective countries.
During the certificate presentation ceremony, DCRC Chairperson Frankie THANAPAL SINNIAH praised the professionalism of the trainers as well as learning enthusiasm exuded by the participants. He also introduced DCRC's initiatives to raise Paralympic standards in Asia which drew positive responses from the floor.
This course was not first of its kind staged by DCRC. In order to keep nurturing professional classifiers whose standards adhere to International Paralympics Committee (IPC) technical rules, DCRC also held the IPC Athletics Classification Seminar in December 2007.
The DCRC is Asia's first centre dedicated to develop athletes' programmes, technical expertise and grow disability sports capabilities. Besides classification seminars and workshops, DCRC undertakes research in the area of sports and equipment development in collaboration with educational institutions including Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
For more information visit www.dcrc-asia.org