By Bunmi Ogunyale
The first edition of the international swimming coaching clinic began yesterday at the Children’s International School, Lekki with over 100 swimming coaches participating.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the week-long event, Managing Director of Insight Sports Limited, Idowu Otukoya said he was excited that after months of rigorous planning, the programme has taken off eventually.
“We are determined to contribute to the development of sports, particularly, swimming in Nigeria,” Otukoya said, adding, “We are even more excited with the calibre and number of coaches that turned up for the programme. And they too are excited and hungry to learn.”
Otukoya said the target was Brisbane 2032 Olympics. “We intend to raise swimmers that can win medals for Nigeria. Remember, Nigeria is yet to win a medal in swimming since participating in the Olympics. We want to change the narrative.”
Nigeria’s first rower, Babajide Egbele, said he was delighted to see the American Swimming Coaches Association certification programme takes place in Nigeria for the first time. “Normally, when you want to do the ASCA programme, you go through levels one, two and three. But here we have it, happening right here in Nigeria, everything lumped in one. I just hope, we are going to have this more often.”
The former Nigeria international praised the effort of Insight Sports Limited and the Lagos State Sports Commission in seeing the programme come to fruition.
Chad Onken who is in charge of international clinics, American Swimming Coaches Association said he was happy to be n Nigeria and was encouraged by the ready-to-learn attitude of the coaches in attendance.