The innovative Coaches Circle, launched recently at Lumine Golf & Beach Club, Costa Dorada, Spain, has been greeted with enthusiastic reactions from attendees ranging from ‘absolutely brilliant’ to ‘it would be a crime if it didn’t continue’.
Staged by the PGAs of Europe at one of Europe’s most exciting new golfing destinations, the Coaches Circle took place in tandem with the Heads of Training Summit and instantly earned its place as a major golf educational initiative or, as one delegate put it: “A must..”
The Coaches Circle brought together National team and elite player coaches for two days of intensive knowledge sharing on all aspects of the game from theory and practical sessions on the short game to discussion around long term athletic development and talent identification. Two heavyweights on the subject, Dr Ernst Zwick and Professor Dave Collins were also on hand to share their expertise and take questions in what proved to be an informative series of sessions.
Thirty delegates were expected for each of the events but 36 attended each of them and their collective and individual responses suggested that they would welcome the occasion to be repeated as and when appropriate.
The Coaches Circle was aimed at those coaches involved in National/junior/regional team coaches and those coaching Elite Players as defined by a player competing on a recognised 1st, 2nd or 3rd level tour.
The Coaches Circle provided a forum which allowed the coaches the opportunity to come together and discuss cutting edge technologies, share good practice and develop new skills and knowledge. Advanced short game techniques along with presentations and discussions around the use of TID (Talent Identification and Development) formed the basis of the two days meeting.
The Heads of Training Summit covered subjects such as: training for career development, the core essentials of education and training, the implications of the Golf Stand project, issues around possible changes to amateur status, continual professional development and the philosophy of Right Coach, Right Place, Right Time, all of which were very well received by the audience which had come from all corners of the globe, with representatives from Canada, South Africa and Hong Kong joining those responsible for training from all around Europe.
The PGAs of Europe’s Director of Education Tony Bennett, who organised and supervised the event, said, “We specifically selected our keynote speakers for their expertise and ability to promote discussion, this proved to be a big success as the quality of discussions at both events surpassed our expectations.” He went on to say that, “We had the right audiences for both events, made up of individuals who were prepared to share their knowledge”.
Lumine Golf & Beach Resort and the Gran Palas Hotel, in the Costa Dorada region of Spainhosted both events. Tony Bennett commented that the staff at both facilities had been very helpful and extremely efficient which had made the organisation and delivery of both events very simple.
Among the leading coaches to enthusiastically welcome the Coaches Circle was former England Head Coach and PGA Master Professional Keith Williams, an experienced PGAs of Europe 5-Star Professional with a distinguished CV who is now head coach to the Czech Republic Federation.
“It would be an absolute crime if Coaches Circledid not go ahead,” he said. “We’ve reached a stage in the evolution of coaching that we need to be looking at new methods, how the golf swing develops, new technology etcetera. It needs a central organisation to run it for all of the countries and the logical organisation is the PGAs of Europe because it has the entire infrastructure to do it and, with R&A support, it is already in place. The Coaches Circle will get one hundred per cent support from me.”
Other comments included
- Lee Parker (Director of Training, PGA of Hong Kong): “I came here seeking knowledge…to keep up with trends in the golf industry. There is a wealth of knowledge within the PGAs of Europe. If we can tap into that it is a huge benefit. What I would like is a data base for smaller PGAs to link into. It’s very clear that if smaller PGAs don’t move forward we will get left behind.”
- Mike O’Brien (Director of Education and National Coach for PGA of Poland): “There were good topics, very incisive, good information and a chance to network, an opportunity to sit and talk with other coaches. Golf training changes so quickly now. It (the Coaches Circle) could be staged on a regular basis, every year or two years.”
- Glenn Cundari (PGA of Canada): “It’s been a fantastic opportunity for national coaches to share experiences and challenges. I think it’s important to get out and see what other coaches are learning. Is there a future forCoaches Circle? It’s a ‘MUST’. The world of teaching and coaching is changing so rapidly.”
- Jeroen den Boer (PGA of Holland): “I’m always interested in new ideas, so this was the place to be. How can the PGAs help elite coaches? By bringing us together like this.”
- Martin Briede (Director PGA of South Africa): “It’s been absolutely brilliant. I’ve learned a lot, especially about the short game, and I can’t wait to share it back home. I thirst for knowledge about golf and this is a fantastic forum for us all to get together and become better coaches.”
Lumine as a resort and Costa Dorada as a region were welcomed with matching enthusiasm. “National coaches and Heads of Training from countries as far asHong Kong,CanadaandSouth Africatogether with many European delegates enjoyed the unique and exquisite services offered by the Gran Palas Hotel and Lumine Golf & Beach Resort in the Costa Dorada region ofSpain,” commented Jonathan Mannie, Chairman of the PGAs of Europe Education Committee. “The staff and personnel at both venues offered fantastic service and made the occasion here an unforgettable experience that I’m sure will be repeated again sometime in the future.”
“It has been a privilege for us to welcome some of the leading opinion formers in European golf this week and showcase our credentials,” commented Calle Carlsson, General Manager, Lumine Golf Club. “We are committed to raising the profile of Lumine and golf on the Costa Dorada so the support of organisations such as the PGAs of Europe is crucial to us moving forward. With two championship golf courses on-site we are striving to host high-profile professional events, and following last month’s successful staging of the PGAs of Europe Fourball Championship we believe we are getting close to realizing that goal.”
The PGAs of Europe www.pgae.com