Youth Talent Pathway coaches representing at the European Discus Conference

Last week we were delighted to have two Youth Talent Programme coaches attend and represent England Athletics at the European Discus Conference in Tallinn.

Jess Arnison with Kristjan Ceh at European Discus Conference

Jess Arnison from Leigh Harriers and Mike Martin from Trafford AC were amongst 99 coaches from 29 European countries who came together in Estonia for three days of insightful theoretical and practical sessions led by the very best coaches and deliverers in the field. These included world silver medallist Kristjan Čeh (pictured with Jess), coach Gerd Kanter, and Olympic Champion Daniel Stahl’s current coach, Staffan Jönnson!

As a young coach, attending the conference was a fantastic personal and professional development opportunity for Jess:

“Attending the European Discus Conference was an incredible experience for both increasing my knowledge of the sport and expanding my network to elite coaches around the world."

“There were many styles of coaching on display, all coaches with a wealth of knowledge and proving that not all coach and athlete dynamics are the same, yet their success is undeniable. I am looking forward to taking the ideas I gained back to my personal group and also into my role on the Youth Talent Programme."

“I am very grateful to England Athletics for the opportunity to attend such an amazing event and for their investment into my development as a young coach."

Discus Conference presentation by Mo Saatara

After the conference, Mike reflected on his experience:

“Attending the European Discus Conference was a truly enriching experience, offering the invaluable opportunity to learn from some of the most elite coaches and athletes in the sport, creating a unique environment that fuelled learning and collaboration.

Discus Conference weights demo

“This experience will undoubtedly enhance my approach to coaching within the Youth Talent Programme and on a personal level, incorporating new insights and strategies gained from elite coaches and athletes.

“The key takeaways served as a poignant reminder that coaching is diverse and athlete-centred, reaffirming that numerous paths can lead to success. This has fuelled my desire to continually broaden my perspective and reinforced my commitment to continuous professional development.”

Speaking on the opportunity, National Event Group Lead for Throws Nick Ridgeon added:

“It was fantastic to be able to work with Jess and Mike and I am grateful that on behalf of England Athletics we are able to invest and support the development of coaches throughout England. Not only will their learnings help those currently on our Youth Talent Programme, but their new knowledge will also benefit their training groups back at their home clubs.”