Randy Wilber to speak at Para Athletics Coaching Conference

Physiologist Wilber will share his Team USA experiences at inaugural conference this December in Colorado Springs, USA. 08 Oct 2015
Randy Wilber

Randy Wilber

ⒸUnited States Olympic Committee

IPC Athletics has confirmed that the USA’s Randy Wilber will be another one of four keynote speakers at the first Para Athletics Coaching Conference, which will take place 12-13 December in Colorado Springs, USA.

Wilber will join a stellar line-up of speakers from the world of high performance para-athletics who will all present on the theme "Destination Rio 2016 - preparing for prime performance."

Currently the Senior Sport Physiologist at the US Olympic Training Centre, Wilber will speak on the topic of “The Junior Elite Athlete: Physiological Characteristics and Training Considerations.”

“It is indeed a great honour and I am looking forward to presenting at the first-ever Para Athletics Coaching Conference,” Wilber said. “I congratulate the IPC on organising this conference, which I predict will grow in popularity among the IPC Athletics community in the years to come.”

Wilber has been at the United States Olympic Committee for 23 years, working closely with numerous Team USA coaches, and Olympic and world champions such as Michael Phelps, Missy Franklin and Apolo Anton Ohno.

His work has focused on areas of altitude training, heat and humidity acclimatisation, blood chemistry analysis, overtraining, international air travel (jet lag), and exercise-induced asthma.

“Although there are some unique physical challenges in working with para-athletes, many things are no different versus able-bodied athletes,” Wilber said. “For example, in my area of physiology, ‘overtraining’ is a big problem among both able-bodied and para-athletes. And therefore, the strategies for preventing overtraining are essentially the same for both.”

Among the key messages Wilber hopes his attendees will take away are: the importance of diversification over specialisation for junior elite athletes; identifying ‘late bloomers;’ and how to nurture passion from the athletes.

The Para Athletics Coaching Conference is targeted at high performance directors, national coaches, classifiers and team support staff including strength and conditioners, nutritionists and physiotherapists.

Featuring a mixture of keynote speeches and panel discussions, attendees will also have the option of attending a number of workshops during the conference.

Joining Wilber as keynote speaker are five-time Paralympian Chantel Petitclerc and Vice President of Paralympics Ireland Liam Moggan.

Petitclerc is a winner of 14 Paralympic gold medals and will be Team Canada's Chef de Mission at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. The Canadian, who in March was awarded the IPC International Women's Day Recognition Award, will speak about athlete perspectives in advances in training and coaching.

Moggan is currently serving as a coach education developer at Coaching Ireland, and will speak on psychology and its effects and importance to para-athletes.

Also confirmed to speak at the event are:

- Guido Bonsen (NED) - Head coach of the Dutch para-athletics team since 2009 who will talk about the key factors in running and jumping with prosthesis.

- Lawrence W. Judge (USA) - National Chairman of the USA Track and Field for Coaches Education who will give a lecture on developing training methodology for seated and standing throws.

- Ciro Winckler (BRA) - Professor of physical education at the Federal University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. He will speak about the right training environment for visually impaired athletes.

The final keynote speaker will be announced in due course.

Registration for the event is now open via the IPC Athletics website.