24 September, 2013

Isle of Man Sporting Excellence Programme returns for second year

Anti-Doping, Media Training and Sports Nutrition are among the subjects to be addressed by top sporting performers and coaches as the Isle of Man Sporting Excellence Programme delivered by Kelly Holmes Education begins its second year.

More than 90 local sports performers and coaches have been selected to attend a day of workshops and presentations at the National Sports Centre in Douglas on Sunday 29 September. Dame Kelly will return to the Island to lead a session on preparing for Major Championships.

Isle of Man sporting hero Ian Sharpe, a swimmer and cyclist who has won multiple medals at the Paralympic Games and many World Championship titles will be attending to share his experiences. Ian smashed numerous records during a career spanning three decades; today he is a successful motivational speaker inspiring a wide range audiences to reach their full potential.


Launched in 2012 to inspire and prepare a new generation of sporting champions, the programme, supported by leading Island businesses Creechurch Capital, Microgaming and SMP Partners, brought together Isle of Man Sport, the Isle of Man Coaches Association and the Isle of Man Commonwealth Games Association.

In addition to elements of physical training, the Kelly Holmes Education programme also offers support and expert knowledge to address the emotional, physiological, psychological and social aspects of being a top sports performer.

The first tangible benefits of the programme were witnessed at the 2013 Island Games in Bermuda in July when the Isle of Man team, featuring many members who attended the Isle of Man Sporting Excellence Programme, topped the table with a tremendous medal haul. Many of the performers and coaches selected for year two of the programme will have their sights firmly focused on next year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Among the experts leading workshops on September 29 will be former cyclist Bryan Steel, a double Olympic medallist and five-time World Champion, experienced journalists and media trainers Sybil Ruscoe and Tom Knight, Sport Psychologist Chris Gooder, who has worked with Arsenal Football Club, and Granville Bennett, an expert on Anti-Doping Education.

Managing Director of SMP Partners, Mark Denton said:

“From the feedback we have received from athletes, coaches and Island sporting organisations, it is clear the first year of the Isle of Man Sporting Excellence Programme delivered great results and real benefits to individuals.

“We were delighted to be able to continue our support as the programme heads into a second year, helping performers and coaches realise their dreams, and ensuring everyone is as prepared as possible for the major events of the coming year, including of course the 2014 Commonwealth Games.”

Roger Raatgever, CEO of Microgaming, added:

“The Isle of Man Sporting Excellence Programme draws on the unrivalled experience of Kelly Holmes Education and the highly qualified tutors and elite performers on board to deliver a unique experience to those sports people and coaches selected to attend.

“The Island boasts so much raw sporting talent; just one year in, it is clear to see that the programme is really paying off. I was fortunate to be able to witness this first-hand at the 2013 Island Games in Bermuda, where the Isle of Man team surpassed all expectations and topped the medal table; a fantastic achievement. Naturally, we are thrilled to be on board for the second year; it’s certainly an exciting time for Isle of Man sport, and we look forward to seeing how the programme progresses over the next year.”

CEO of Creechurch Capital, John Greenwood, said:

“Throughout the first year of our partnership with Kelly Holmes Education, we were able to witness the impact the talent days led by world-class experts had on our athletes and coaches. It made clear the value of focusing not only on the physical, but also on the psychological, social and emotional elements of ultimate performance which may often be overlooked.”

“We heard so much positivity from everyone involved in the first year that we had no hesitation in confirming we would continue our support into year two, especially with a number of major sporting events, including the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, coming up.”

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