Ian Halliday, ChPC
Sport: Sitting Volleyball
Years Coaching: 8
Years Coaching National Team: 5
NCCP Status: Level 3
Twiter Handle : @imhalliday
Previous Games: Guadalajara 2011
What are you most looking forward to about coaching on home soil?
The opportunity to showcase the sport of sitting volleyball at a high level of competition to the Canadian fans. We are still a relatively new discipline of volleyball in Canada and this is a great opportunity to show the country how fast and intense our game is. On a personal level, I am really looking forward to being a part of a home games and feeling the excitement and support of the nation. I was fortunate enough to attend the 2010 Olympics and the 2015 Women’s Soccer World Cup in Vancouver as a fan and it is amazing to be a part of something where a city and a country rallies around a common goal. I can’t wait to embrace that support of a nation in Toronto!
What was the most important part of your preparation as a coach?
In our sport, we do not get the opportunity to compete a lot and especially in big competitions like the Parapan Am Games. Our preparation focuses a lot on our athletes and coaches knowing what to expect in Toronto and how to deal with the many distractions that we know we will face. We have a lot of new athletes and staff in the program with varying levels of volleyball experience and so the education part of our preparations is very important.
Did everything go according to plan? What would you do differently?
The preparations are ongoing and we won’t be able to effectively evaluate until we are at the games and in that environment. We recruited a number of new athletes very late in the season who will be competing at the 2015 Parapan Am Games and so we have had to adjust our education and management planning in order to accommodate all of our athletes.
What would a medal performance by one of your athletes mean to you as a coach?
To see our athletes standing on the podium at the 2015 Parapan Am Games in Canada would be an incredible achievement. That being said, this event is our zone qualifier for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Brazil and so our goals extend beyond just getting on the podium, we want to earn that ticket to Brazil as well.
What did NCCP training teach you that will serve you well in the heat of competition at these Games?
The season planning and periodization education that we received through the NCCP training has been very beneficial in preparing our teams for the 2015 Parapan Am Games. With the games being a significant focus point on our season calendar, it was very important that we have a balanced and well developed seasonal plan in place to ensure that our athletes peak in all aspects of their game, not just the physical and technical.
What tip do you have for development and community coaches?
Myself and our other sitting volleyball coaches are fortunate to be coaching at a level that gives us the opportunity to compete at the Parapan Am Games and other major games. However, it is important to realize the importance of development, grassroots and community sport to create a strong sport system. Although the coaches at these levels often do not receive enough recognition, the work that they do for sport development and athlete development is extremely important. As the sport of sitting volleyball continues to grow in Canada, the importance associated to the development and community coaches needs to increase greatly in order to provide quality opportunities for everyone to play, and to create a strong athlete pool for continued national team development.