Sunday, June 26, 2011

American Yacht Club Olympic Youth Clinic

Yesterday at American Yacht Club, Will and I had the chance to help out some of our Olympic US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics to spend some time on the water coaching.

The 420 fleet with Amanda Clark and Erik Stork

Rob Crane keeps an eye on the Laser race course 
What's striking is that although these Olympians are beyond the level of basic coaching, they haven't lost the fundamental skills of motivating kids and breeding what might be the next generation of Olympians. It was an inspiring reminder of the impact any coach can make on a younger sailor's career, especially among these names. Between Erik Storck, Trevor Moore, Amanda Clark, and Rob Crane, each Olympian had only five to seven kids to coach which made it possible to get to know each other for the day.

Amanda Clark talks a team through roll tacking

What was cool for me to see was each Olympian's enthusiasm in coaching and not hesitating to immediately treat each kid as if they had already been that kid's private coach all summer. There were a several great coaching moments whether it was Amanda Clark following a 420 team until they succeeded in a great roll tack or Rob Crane keeping a distant eye on one struggling Laser sailor. It was an experience to see how much these Olympians understand the value of a coach and love to do it themselves. At the end of the day we were able to grab Erik Storck and Trevor Moore to talk about their perspective on coaching. I'd say they had pretty different but complementary responses- check it out below!

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