Coaching day review 2023

We were very pleased to support a sixth Orienteering Foundation coaching day in the Lake District in November 2023, kindly organised once again by Derek Allison.

The day was scheduled to use Colonel's Drive in the Graythwaite Estate, but unfortunately the landowners withdrew permission a fortnight before. This led to several frantic emails and calls, but with the support of Richard Tiley (access officer) and Derek (thanks very much to both of them!) permissions were secured at Great Tower, and Derek reused and revised some old club coaching exercises to save the day. See details for the day here

28 individual adult participants were coached by Derek assisted by Jo Cleary, with another 59 in groups from EMOA, LOC, WMJS, CLOK/NN and SROC. This was the sixth coaching day we have run. Great Tower is an excellent area for coaching, with a variety including lots of classic Lakes rock and contour detail, with a modest path network for the less experienced, but maps without paths available for the more experienced. 

As with previous coaching days, Derek chose and checked control sites, planned loops for the individual participants, and hung and collected the controls on the day. For the group leaders he shared OCAD map files, Purple Pen course files, and a risk assessment, so all they had to worry about was planning exercises appropriate to their group, then concentrating on delivering the best possible coaching to their group!

Selected comments from some group leaders:

Thanks to Derek and others involved in putting on the training. It's always great to have the opportunity to train in quality Lake District terrain and having controls put out for us is a real bonus.
Please do continue with this each year and in the Lakes (with event the next day) - we will always come

And from some individual participants:

On the day, it was great to have both Derek and Jo there to talk to before each run, help shape how I approached it, give me some things to think about or try, and then discuss the results after.
One of the first things Derek said on the day was “Do something different - don’t orienteer like you always do.” I found that helpful and enabling as a starting point.
Really enjoyed challenging myself a bit with tougher maps. Individuals running it were very engaging and made me want to return. Overall I was really glad I came and will book on to other ones, and have friends that now want to come too.

Given the continued interest in coaching days, we would hope to stage further ones in the Lakes. We would also be interested in supporting coaching days in other parts of the UK. If you might be interested in organising such a day with our support, please get in touch with Duncan Archer (email hidden; JavaScript is required) or any of the Orienteering Foundation ambassadors or trustees.

Last updated: Sun 17 Dec 2023