On Wednesday 29 September 2010 Sport Northern Ireland hosted the Investing In Performance Sport (IIPS) Seminar to which representatives of the 34 organisations funded through the IIPS were invited.
The seminar gave the attendees an opportunity to hear of good practice being undertaken by a range of sports and to provide Sport Northern Ireland with feedback on the impact IIPS investment has made on their organisations to date.
Danny O’Connor, Sport Northern Ireland Board Member, opened the Seminar and Jill Poots, Performance Investment Manager outlined the progress achieved to date in relation to the objectives of the programme.
Download a copy of the presentation (PDF 323KB)
A series of workshops took place examining the following themes:
Governance and Management of
Sarah Keane - CEO Swim Ireland
John Beggs - Sport Northern Ireland
Talent Identification and Development
Chris Jones - High Performance Director, Triathlon Ireland
Robin Gregg - Sport Northern Ireland
Increasing Sustained Participation
Chris Webster and Barry Willis - IRFU (Ulster Branch)
Simon Toole - Sport Northern Ireland
Developing Coaching Structures
Ashley Hunter - Coaching Development Manager, Canoe Association of NI
David Smyth - Sport Northern Ireland
Copies of presentations are available to download:
The evening concluded with feedback from the workshops which highlighted the following key messages:
- Governance and modernisation audits are a beneficial process.
- Flexibility in approach is required - as one size governance does not fit all.
- Good governance also impacts on improved athletic performance.
- To effect change, training is required for governing body board and staff members.
High Performance and Talent Identification
- It is important for each sport to understand what high performance looks like within their own sport.
- Sports should develop systems which are appropriate to their own sport.
- Sports should engage and develop coaches within the system to support talented athletes.
- Designated coaching officers raise the quality and quantity of coaches within the sport, subsequently increasing the awareness and importance of coach development.
- Barriers to coach development exist and should be taken into consideration.
Participation and Club Development
- Investment has started to increase participation in a sustainable way.
- Certain structures are still work in progress.
- Club development highlights the importance of clubs within sports.
Concerns were raised by participants about Sport Northern Ireland’s budget beyond March 2011, however Sport Northern Ireland representatives advised that until the Government Spending Review was completed, Sport Northern Ireland did not know what implications public spending cuts may have for the 80 governing body staff whose employment is secured through the IIPS programme.
Initial feedback has indicated that the evening was very valuable for both governing body representatives and Sport Northern Ireland. However Sport Northern Ireland would welcome any additional feedback and suggestions for future events.