Triathlon: Top world triathlon coach returns home

Gwen Jorgensen during the Women's Triathlon at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Photo / Getty Images
Gwen Jorgensen during the Women's Triathlon at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Photo / Getty Images

He spends most of his time in Wollongong, Australia coaching some of the world's top athletes including Women's World Champion and Olympic Gold medalist, Gwen Jorgenson. Jamie Turner is back in the country on a short trip to his hometown of Waitara to support local triathlon club.

This weekend, Jamie partners with Taranaki Toa to bring together members of the club for a special training camp. As members of the club focus on their training for the 2017 events season, the camp is an opportunity to bring together a mix of novices, experienced and seasoned triathlon campaigners.

"This is my community; these are the people that I grew up with. A lot of the folks that I see at Taranaki Toa are people that I knew as a teenager or knew of, because I grew up in Waitara", says Jamie.

Whilst he may be an Olympic Gold winning coach, Jamie feels a strong affinity back to the community and club. "I can still coach somebody who is a participant in our sport and along the same ideals and encourage the same values as I do an Olympic champion.

That's something unique about our sport, it's draw of people is pretty broad."

Taranaki Toa's core values are; manaakitanga (hospitable or looking after one another), aroha (love and care for others), whanaungatanga (sense of family connection, relationship) and pono (integrity, honesty). The kaupapa is what supports the group and continues to be the driving force behind their campaign to improve the health and wellbeing of others especially for Maori. Taranaki Toa aren't exclusive but have recognised that poor health exists hugely with Maori families and they simply want to improve this.

The training camp focuses on supporting each athlete on their hauora journey with a weekend of exercise and activity that aims to push their limits and help them to achieve beyond their own expectations.

Throughout the weekend Jamie will deliver intensive training on all three disciplines with support from local, Les Thorn on the bike run. The schedule is also packed with hauora sessions; mental and emotional, social and spiritual well-being.

Camp goers have signed themselves up for an exciting yet full-on active weekend with one of the world's top triathlon coaches. Jamie is especially excited to give back to the community he grew up in and is in full support of the club's ethos.
More about Jamie Turner and Taranaki Toa

Jamie Turner grew up in Waitara just outside of New Plymouth. His sporting experience as a teenager was in motocross and from 18 onwards was involved in track and road cycle. He studied Physical Education in Wollongong, Australia and whilst studying, fell into coaching when he was working part time in a bike shop when a group of surf life savers asked him to train them.

He aligned himself with Rohan Taylor, Olympic Swim Coach based in Wollongong. After receiving a scholarship from the Australian Sports Commission in 2004, this opportunity paved the way for his coaching career.

Taranaki Toa hosted the Mounga Tri Series earlier this year in Waitara and Opunake. The group which started its humble beginnings back in 2012 and are now reaching over 800 members on their Facebook page as they continue to actively promote health and wellbeing through regular exercise (triathlon being one of those avenues).

- NZ Herald

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