Junior Committee 3/12/03 Meeting
Chorley Athletic & Triathlon Club
Junior Committee first meeting
3rd December 2014, Southlands High School, 7.15 for 7.30 start. Will end by 9.30pm
Notes from meeting 3rd December
Attendees: Richard (coach & parent), Steve Thomas (coach), Jane Bowles (coach, parent & swim admin), Marc (Parklands admin), Andy Lavin (cycling admin), Stan Jewel (Club XC Secretary), Hayley (parent), Melanie Singleton (parent), Amanda Chadwick (parent), Ruth (coach & junior), TJ Hughes (Triathlon admin & parent)
Apologies: Sarah , Karen Hancock, Janet Brookes, Ruth , Simon Townsend
Stan agreed to Chair the meeting. TJ agreed to take notes & distribute
The meeting covered a lot of areas concerning juniors in Chorley, all positive, but with areas for improvement. Parents were keen to support coaches to put in the required structure within the club to ensure safe, insured sessions, that were enjoyable for young people to attend.
Context a junior committee had been discussed at recent coaches meetings as a way of allowing the coaches to coach. There was also concern that some sections got a lot of information, whilst others get very little. Communication is a key concern that the coaches would like to be addressed by this group. The coaches meetings from now on must be about coaching and junior development issues, not admin tasks if the club is to continue to develop. There’s a need for more structure within the junior coaching to develop juniors through disciplines and skill areas, as well as develop them into joining the senior section.
Stan raised a concern that 5 disciplines, (XC, Track & field, Fell, Triathlon, Road/Trail) for juniors within the club was too much & should the section focus on certain events and do them well. There was certain agreement about doing things together, as well as coaching for events/disciplines in a structured way.
It was agreed that the social side of the club and particularly events was important to juniors. This is especially important with secondary age juniors who don’t necessarily want to become elite sports people, but want to keep fit and have fun. There needs to be a balance between promoting competition and the needs/wants of juniors. It was felt that a Grand Prix that was clear at the start of the year i.e. by 1st January 2015, would help juniors and parents understand how much fun events could be, and encourage teams.
It was felt that the Monday & Thursday athletic sessions were missing a “Meet & Greet” element. The club is confusing, and parents/juniors aren’t aware of what things are/what goes on/what they can get involved with. Hayley, Melanie & Amanda offered to work this, with Janet Brookes on a Monday. Marc said he’d do his best on , but may need to recruit another parent to support this task.
A paper information leaflet was agreed as a good idea which covered the basics and gave information for parents/juniors. This would be given up front and would also be the content used on the new website. The following areas were agreed to be written, which would include information about events Chorley encouraged/:
Junior Athletics overview Richard
Junior Triathlon overview Steve
Track & Field Ruth
Athletics training sessions (Holy Cross & Parklands) Richard
Athletics training sessions other? track? Simon?
Cycling training sessions Steve
Swimming training sessions Jonathan
Road / Trail ?
Basics of club, how it works & what you need to know Amanda, Melanie & Hayley
It was agreed that training logs which incorporated some of this information in a loose leaf folder which juniors looked after were to be encouraged. Session plans, progress markers and event details can be listed in these. Ruth said they’d been part of her junior development from early secondary age, and would encourage the club to do this. Ruth to share her templates for use in these.
Communication is a key concern. For example Holy Cross don’t have a key contact for the booking, so the Monday coaches had no idea until they turned up for the session that it would be outside. Phones had been talked about at committee, as an SMS system is cost prohibitive for the club at the moment ( £1000 a year). It was agreed this was a good idea to have a phone for each session with an administrator looking after it. There was some discussion about whether this would be for the coach or the administrator to use. To be discussed at the next coaches meeting & approved at committee.
Those who attended felt the weekly training fees could go up to stop some parents using the club as a . It was felt that numbers needed to be curbed somehow, and this would be one way of cutting numbers at the athletics sessions. It was mentioned that even though an increase of £1 a week wasn’t much for many, for those who did a lot of competitions, it could be a considerable jump with shoe & equipment costs as well.
A discussion was had about badly behaved children, and the coaches said they were going to start clamping down on this, and advising children and parents about unacceptable . This is another way to ensure sessions are safe and fun for juniors and coaches. If continued to be an issue, steps will be taken with the child/ concerned.
It was agreed that if juniors don’t attend sessions for 4 weeks in a row with no contact with the session , the juniors place will be removed and it will be necessary to rejoin via the current club method in the future.
Overall it was felt that club rules, and higher weekly fees could be stood, so that people committed to attending coaching sessions & coaches could plan sessions better. It was mentioned that cycling & swimming attendees paid up front for half term, and this worked well with apologies being sent when someone couldn’t attend. No action was agreed, but it was agreed as an idea to trial. The rules need to include dropping junior off with coach or admin support, and collecting from the at the end of the session.
There was some discussion about enforcing juniors to compete, with mixed views expressed. It was agreed that competing can develop confidence in a number of areas of a juniors life. However concern was expressed about pressure being put on juniors when the focus in the club is about support, development and enjoyment. There needs to be a balance. It was agreed that more events would help with this, as well as new ways of communicating to parents & juniors about opportunities and fun, team events.
More trained coaching assistants were needed to ensure the club could continue to grow.
Events to attend were discussed briefly. TJ had pulled a diary together of known events across a few disciplines, including triathlon, Mid XC and Track & Field, and Chorley run events. Coaches to agree Grand Prix & promoted events, as well as events. Concern was expressed about this year’s Grand Prix, being unknown to many in the club, and the points system changing and juniors not being /mentioned despite having competed in a lot of events over the year. Recognition of all juniors attendance, progress and achievements was agreed to be important.
It was agreed that there needed to be weeks where there was no training and rest was enforced for coaches & juniors. Coaches to agree at next meeting & communicate to sections.
It was noted the club had Junior Captains who juniors could communicate with, (Hannah Lavin & Jacob Hughes). There needs to be a way for them to feed into the junior committee to ensure athletes voices are heard as well as parents.
Next meeting Wed 7th January 7.15 for 7.30 9.30pm. Venue TBC. 2 coaches to attend each meeting. 1 parent to attend coaches meeting so that communication could be shared both ways & support put in place.
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