#development, #WrestleBirmingham

UWW-KIMBA partnership helps Ahinsa win Sri Lanka’s first CWG medal

By United World Wrestling Press

CORSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland (August 17): The Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, which concluded on August 8, saw some thrilling wrestling action, with athletes from 10 countries finishing on the podium. New rivalries were established in the process and history was rewritten, the latter being true in the case of one wrestler in particular.

Nethmi AHINSA (SRI) won the bronze medal in the women’s freestyle 57kg category, sharing the podium with Hannah TAYLOR (CAN), who also won a bronze, silver medal winner Anshu MALIK (IND) and gold medallist from Odunayo ADEKUOROYE (NGR).

For Ahinsa and her country, though, the medal will hold a special significance. The bronze, after all, was Sri Lanka’s first medal in wrestling at the Commonwealth Games. And Ahinsa, only 18 years old, was the youngest to win a medal.

Ahinsa’s medal is also a testimony to the success of the UWW’s developmental programs.

Ahinsa had been a part of the Crysbro Next Champ Program, which is run by the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka. As a part of the program, the schoolgirl from the country’s North Western Province was sent to Hungary, where she got exposure to training and competing with some of the top-level athletes.

AHINSANethmi AHINSA (SRI) won a bronze medal in the 57kg weight class in Birmingham.

The UWW funded and supported her three-month training program at its partner center in Hungary, the Kozma István Hungarian Wrestling Academy (KIMBA), in collaboration with the NOC of Sri Lanka, which expressed its gratitude towards UWW and KIMBA.

The partnership between UWW and KIMBA came to fruition during President Lalovic’s visit to Budapest, Hungary, last year in December. During his trip, a partnership was initiated with KIMBA for the global development of the sport. Under the agreement, it was decided that KIMBA would host several international wrestling events, training camps, seminars and other programs.

The positive impact of the collaboration is for all to see, and Ahinsa’s medal at the Commonwealth Games underlines the importance UWW places on such developmental programs.

#development

Women in Sport: Coaches begin the WISH Programme

By United World Wrestling Press

London, England (August 22) – Women in Sport High-Performance Pathway (WISH) kicked off the first edition of the programme on 23 May.  WISH was designed to equip women coaches with the potential and ambition to gain roles at elite coaching levels within their sports. The programme is specifically designed to help coaches develop their sport-specific skills, leadership skills and behaviors and build confidence. United World Wrestling is participating along with seven other IF’s and is being supported by Olympic Solidarity, the University of Hertfordshire, and Females Achieving Brilliance (FAB).

United World Wrestling selected three coaches to participate in the first edition. Those coaches include Martine DUGRENIER (CAN), Aline DA SILVA (BRA) and Carissa HOLLAND (AUS). They recently had the opportunity to attend the Residential Session at the University of Hertfordshire (August 14-20).  “The WISH Programme was really well conducted," said Carissa Holland. "We not only learn about leadership qualities and skillsets, but I learned a lot about myself (especially coming out of the recent Commonwealth Games in Birmingham).”  

The residential session was a weeklong event where the coaches attended working sessions and participated in learning activities with the 24 other coaches in attendance.  Some of the key learning points included leadership skills, creative problem-solving, creating connections, mindset, having uncomfortable conversations and visualizing the future, among many other topics.

WISH
Participants of the WISH programme gather for a photo. (Photo: United World Wrestling)

“The residential week was great. We had the opportunity to meet great people all around the world and learned from experienced well accomplished people," said Aline da Silva. "It was very inspiring. I have learned to embrace a leadership role, to empower others and enjoy the journey! I’m excited to see where the program will lead me over the next 20 months,” said Martine Dugrenier. “The week was more than I expected; I shared a lot with the coaches and improved my knowledge about my leadership. I came back home excited to improve all I learned there and keep the connections.”

The WISH Programme is a 21-month programme.  These coaches will continue meeting with the WISH Leadership Team and work with their leadership mentors and sport-specific mentors.  WISH was originally piloted as the WSLA High-Performance Coach Programme.

UWW participated in the original pilot program with four coaches. After a successful experience, the WISH Programme was developed and expanded to include participation by more International Federations.  UWW has renewed its participation in the outstanding programme.