TWENTY-SEVEN of 29 coaches from 18 countries in the region, including nine Jamaicans, were certified as International Level One volleyball coaches after a two-week course staged by the Jamaica Volleyball Association (JAVA) and the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) at GC Foster College.

Although two of the candidates ended the courses prematurely due to medical reasons, JAVA president Major Warrenton Dixon believes their goal of improving the knowledge of the game and quality of coaches was somewhat accomplished.

“This we expect will impact the development of the sport across the island and from a regional perspective, it’s a similar thing... If the sport is being developed around the region, it can only have a positive impact on us,” he said.

“Although I don’t believe that one Level One course is going to take us to where we want to... this is the start; the real pudding is the development that comes years after,” he added.

Individual awards were also presented to Kurtwood Lyndon from The Bahamas for being the best participant in both practical and theory, while Jamaica’s Namarie Gordon was the best student overall in the practical and Shantal Carter the best female at practical.

FIVB course director Anthanasios Papageorgiou — who worked alongside Ramiro Hart, an FIVB instructor and Yohanna Mota, assistant director of the Regional Development Centre — said it was an intense course which lasted up to eight hours each day.

He noted that they achieved their main aim, which was to impart knowledge on the various forms of the game and on basic tactics.

“The students got a lot of new knowledge and new aspects of volleyball because we have many different ways to introduce volleyball... this was very good for the participants.

“This was a very important coaching course because we had participants from 18 different countries and for Jamaica, this is a big achievement,” he said.

Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) President Mike Fennell, the guest speaker at the closing ceremony on Saturday, congratulated the participants on completing the course and encouraged them to put what they learnt into practise.