USA Weightlifting Features USA Weightlifting An...

USA Weightlifting Announces New Decentralized Training, Centralized Leadership Model

July 18, 2016, 11:54 a.m. (ET)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- USA Weightlifting announced Monday a new Sport Division plan for the coming quadrennial. Below is a short outline of the program, while a full High Performance Plan and 4-year selection document will be available in the fall. Additional questions can be sent to phil.andrews@usaweightlifting.org or lance.williams@usaweightlifting.org

New Direction for Performance
With the discontinuation of the resident program at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, USA Weightlifting is moving toward a new model for training our top athletes.  Without a designated central program, USA Weightlifting is going to continue to support top athletes and provide resources to enable athletes to strive for the podium. 

The first priority for our Sport Division is to assist our resident athletes in establishing a new central location for training. It is incumbent they find a new personal coach and location they are comfortable with so they can continue their weightlifting career. 

Our top athletes will continue to benefit from our established stipend program; however, our new Associate Executive Director of Sport, Lance Williams, will seek out each of these top athletes and explore additional performance services, networks, or modalities to enhance the individual performance plans through 2020 and 2024 as it relates to each athlete.  This customized approach is result of our new commitment of Centralized Sport Leadership from USA Weightlifting in a decentralized training model.

In addition to Williams, we have hired some of the best talent and technical expertise in Sport of Weightlifting, Pyrros Dimas Technical Director, Sport, Tamás Fehér, Manager of Coaching Education, Pedro Meloni, Events Manager.  This new sport team has each member boasting experience at the Olympic and top International Sport scene for over 68 years combined. 

USA Weightlifting intends to use this Fehér’s experience to further develop our existing Coaching Curriculum and add additional course offerings as well as establish a Coaching Mentor program.  Dimas’ presence will lead our athlete development by offering guidance requested by our coaches as well as lead in competition on the international stage, where he will be assisted by a Marshall card specialist (to be appointed) and the personal coach of the athlete.  As Meloni arrives following his role as Sport Manager for the Weightlifting & Paralympic Powerlifting at the 2016 Games, he will assume his position with USAW and begin running his first event in Orlando, Florida.

Our performance group, inclusive of the individuals listed above and with athlete representation, will evaluate funding requests from athletes, and use USA Weightlifting’s funds according to need, providing additional support to athletes on top of the already announced and extensive stipend program.

USA Weightlifting is excited to have this group of resources available to our members and to lead us through a new era of sport performance for 2020, 2024 and beyond.

As part of this new strategy, high performing facilities housing multiple international athletes will be designed as a Road to Tokyo 2020 Facility. Full details will be made available in due time.

USA Weightlifting will also be implementing a “Certified” training site program for elite training sites without a volume of elite athletes.

This new group will additionally be responsible for other areas consistent with our sport plan, such as a comprehensive talent recruitment platform. Further details will be released on this area as our detailed quadrennial plan is finalized.

“The closure of the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs means that we have to take a new approach to supporting our athletes. Bringing in the correct expertise, together with taking an individualized approach to high performance plans for each athlete means that we are now bring our support to the athlete, and not the athlete to us. We ask for our coaches and athletes to work with us as we implement this plan over the coming months,” USA Weightlifting CEO Phil Andrews said.