The International Biathlon Union successfully held its first-ever Second Level Course from 23 to 27 September 2023 in Oberhof (GER). IBU Secretary General Max Cobb officially opened the course on 23 September, marking a new milestone in IBU's educational programs.
Oberhof, with its rich history as a biathlon hotspot hosting numerous World Cup events, provided an ideal setting for this course, offering seminar rooms, a great stadium, and all the necessary facilities for a profound and interactive learning experience. The course brought together 20 skilled coaches from 19 different national federations, creating a learning environment filled with shared knowledge and diverse experiences.
The attendees enjoyed helpful sessions by notable lecturers and IBU Educators. Highlights were the days with a focus on the improvement of skiing and shooting techniques with the guidance of Siegfried Mazet and Trond Nystad. The wide-ranging curriculum covered important topics including Skiing and Shooting Technique, Coaches' Soft Skills, Training Science, Anti-Doping, Nutrition, and Equipment.
Hannes Kock discussed the development of training philosophy and making training plans for both junior and senior biathletes. He also covered endurance training for biathletes.
Norway´s Head Coach Siegfried Mazet shared valuable insights on shooting training.
Practical tips on setting up a shooting session and improving shooting technique were provided.
Steffen Hoos shared useful information on waxing, grinding, and other important aspects of skiing material.
IBU Development Director Dagmara Gerasimuk talked about Interpersonal Skills.
Gerold Sattlecker discussed factors affecting performance in biathlon shooting.
Trond Nystad shared his great knowledge of the Advanced Skiing Technique.
Matthias Ahrens served the whole week as an IBU Educator in the practical lectures.
Reflecting on the importance of this course, Gerold Sattlecker, Head of the IBU Academy, said:
With this Second Level Course, we are now running the third stage of our coach education. This is a big step for the IBU Academy. And we are also happy to have such great lecturers in our course.
The pilot Second Level Course not only helped the participating coaches to learn more but also showed IBU's ongoing effort to push the biathlon community towards higher levels of excellence. As the coaches return to their home countries, they bring with them new knowledge and the friendships made during this special educational event. The second and third level weeks of the course will be held in Lillehammer in April 2024 and in Antholz in July 2024.