10 Oct 2016

Situated high in the Andes, the Colombian capital city of Bogota was the home for a recent ITTF Level Two Course; proceedings commenced on Tuesday 27th September and concluded on Sunday 2nd October.

The expert on duty was Ramon Ortega Montes, alias Moncho, the Development Officer for the Latin American Table Tennis Union.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

A total of 19 coaches attended. In addition to Bogota, course members travelled from Antioquia, Cundinamarca, Risoralda and Valle; most being full time coaches, in villages, cities, Universities or clubs.

 Home for the whole itinerary was the High Performance Centre; fully equipped with court mat, classroom and all the necessary requirements for practical sessions, the venue proved ideal.

“At the High Performance Centre, as well as table tennis, there is tennis, fencing, volleyball, archery, athletics and others”, explained Moncho. “We worked in groups; defining key words; each day became more and more tiring as theory meetings and practical sessions filled the day.”

 A full schedule, the ITTF Level Two Course being somewhat more demanding than the ITTF Level Two agenda; nevertheless, the response from all concerned was extremely positive.

 “I enjoyed the course a great deal, I realise that my function as coach is more important than being a player”, said Cesar Hernandez. “So I will change things in my way of training to apply so new techniques I never thought not possible.”

An explanation is made to willing students (Photo: courtesy of Ramon Ortega Montes)

 The response was echoed by John Jairo Rodriguez.

 “I´m used to the methods and didactic approach used you use as I work at a university as teacher and we use the same methods”, he said. “Congratulations, I hope you will never change such kind of methods, even if they are very tough; I´m so tired that I will need to sleep one full week.”

 A tired but satisfied student; Orlando Castro was very much in the same mould.

 “I have studied so much, in the evening each day two hours and in the morning, getting up very early, another three to four hours; I´m very tired but all the knowledge I gained compensates”, he explained. “I realized that many things I did are not with the technique explained; I will work very hard to change and to be able to teach it to the players. I´m really tired but also really happy”.

 Delighted coaches and there was a delighted Technical Director, Jhon Cruz was more than pleased with the efforts made.

 Notably with the recent success of Lady Ruano, winning the ITTF-Latin American Cup earlier in the week and more recently Paula Medina being crowned South American champion, the level amongst female players is very promising. Now attention needs to be directed towards their female counterparts.

Overall 16 students completed a full attendance; eleven students gained the required pass mark.

A practical session takes place (Photo: courtesy of Ramon Ortega Montes)
High Performance and Development Ramon Ortega Montes