Sunday, January 11, 2009

NCTCCCA Coaches Clinic

I had the pleasure of being invited by the North Carolina Coaches Association to be a guest speaker for their annual coaches clinic.

I spent the weekend in Greensboro, they flew Brooks, Randy and myself up. This event was in conjunction with the kick-off for the International Friendship Freedom Games that Brooks hosts annually at N.C. A&T.

There were a couple hundred high school coaches in North Carolina that attended the clinic. I spoke on the elite side of the 110 hurdle event. I spoke to the coaches for about two hours on the basics of proper technique, elite level training, a typical training cycle I go through, the mentality of elite hurdlers and several other topics.

The coaches were really receptive and were eager to learn everything that I had to say, that's pretty cool. I feel that I'm 26 years old and have an expansive understanding of the event, that a lot of my peers and a whole bunch of coaches don't. That's all thanks to Brooks, LOL.

The thing that the coaches couldn't fathom was the fact that I was an Olympic Medalist and I wasn't elite on the high school or college level. They had a hard time grasping that just because you are not the top ranked high school or college athlete, you can go on to make things happen on the elite level. When I explained to them that I was a 14.25 hurdler in high school, they were like "Well, we had about 10 guys run sub 14 last year." I really emphasized to them that they should never give up on an athlete because they never know who they might have in their midst.

I had a really good time out there sharing the knowledge that I have with people that are really eager to learn.


Coach said...

Its always great when the olympians come to the coaches clinics. Tommie Smith is speaking at ours.

ejheat said...

I am sure all those coaches learned a lot from you and all your wonderful words of wisdom, David. The part that I found great was that you emphasized to those coaches to never give up on their student high school athletes. They might just become the next David Oliver on and off the track which would certainly make this a better world for everyone. This got me going down memory lane with my Kim high school story of about 20 years ago. You never know the effect and impact you have on someones life. Kim and I were great friends from elementary school and she always had a crush on me. Kim had a deformaty to her face that made her look very awkward and different from everybody else. She was made fun of by students really bad calling her "brickface" and it just made me so sad because Kim was such a wonderful, loving, caring girl and very intelligent. I enjoyed her company very much and believed in her. In our Senior year of high school, several students played a horrible joke on her by nominating her as 1 of the nominees for high school homecoming queen as a cruel joke about the way she looked. Of course, she asked me to be her escort and it was not easy for me to do it because I knew that I would be teased and made fun of like crazy and I really did get teased and ridiculed by many people for doing it. But, I knew it was just the right thing to do and it I knew that it would mean so much to Kim. The teachers became aware of what happened, but I do believe that Kim really believed she could be the homecoming queen and to keep a long story short, Kim got the last laugh because she got married to a wonderful man who accepted her and loved her for her. It goes to show that we should never give up on anyone in life and that we all can have impacts on another persons life in ways that we can never imagine. I am so glad I did that for Kim and will always cherish that moment even though we did not become king and queen. The teachers and announcer did keep telling us to step forward into the finalists for king and queen that night on the high shool football field. Oh, what a moment in my life that I will never forget. The beautiful smile on Kim's face and how happy she really was at that moment. I was kind of a king for my queen Kim for that Senior evening during halftime of the football homecoming game. My parents and family and friends were so proud of me and it certainly made me a better person and 1 of the proudest and most special moments of my life!!!!


QT said...

Wow, that's great that you were able to break those coaches out of mental jail! Humans are followers by nature, often too lazy to think on their own and derive their own ideals much less use the word of God as their guide. So not surprised to hear that they believed you have to follow the beaurocratic way to get to the top! I think I'll rename 2009 to be two thousand SHINE...cuz u bling'd 'em wit da knowledge...

They probably would have been really confused if you threw in your spiritual walk of getting there and where you are were obviously Gods vessel to help some coach(or coaches) see the people they are working with as more than the equation of legs and feet and a body that moves on a track coupled with titles!

Keep the knowledge flowin', God is really using you. A beautiful testimony and motivation to be patient with those that choose to follow and therefore doubt...And 1!

Aunt Celest said...

Hey David,

It's a wonderful thing to share knowledge with our youth. It's even more beautiful when our senior people listen. Do you think you would ever be interested
in becoming a coach, or having your own clinic? Anything new about your house?

Aunt Celest

Aunt Celest