Athletes, coaches & medics benefit from Anti-Doping & Sports Nutrition Workshop
National Federations, athletes, coaches, medics and volunteers benefitted from the BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) free Anti-Doping and Sports Nutrition Workshop held in the Eileen Parsons Auditorium at the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College, Tortola on Saturday morning, December 3, 2022.
An anti-doping presentation was made in the evening at the Bregado Flax Educational Center on Virgin Gorda on Friday, December 2.
The workshops, supported by Olympic Solidarity, were held in collaboration with the Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation (RADO), headquartered in Barbados and the Ministry of Health and Social Development through its Public Health Unit (PHU).
In brief remarks at the opening of the workshop at the HLSCC Mr. Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC said, "In recent years, the BVI has produced 2 Olympic finalists, a two-times Commonwealth Games and Diamond League Champion and a junior track and field phenomenon which has brought us to the attention of international organisations such as the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
"As both the National Olympic Committee and the National Anti-Doping Commission, we need to educate our national federations and their member athletes, coaches, parents and volunteers on the processes and expectations for clean sport since lack of knowledge is not accepted as an excuse in the event of a violation."
President Penn also highlighted the importance of combining athletic performance with a healthy diet for optimal results. Honourable Marlon Penn, Minister for Health and Social Development expounded on the topic in his remarks.
"The Ministry for Health and Social Development, through its Public Health Unit, has an agenda that seeks to combat non-communicable diseases in the community and to encourage healthier lifestyles through physical activity and a diet rich in nutritional food. As athletes, it is even more important that you receive the right information that will help you to choose the right food that will help you maximise your output for the results you hope to achieve. I am pleased that the Ministry is positioned to provide this guidance."
The educational workshops explained the anti-doping rules and regulations that guide WADA's mandate for clean sports in all competitions sanctioned by the International Olympic Committee. They included an introduction to the Anti-Doping Education and Learning Platform (ADEL) - the centralised platform offering educational solutions for athletes and coaches - and ADAMS (the Anti-Doping Administration and Management System) for processing and entering data in all anti-doping issues. ADAMS is used by athletes for submitting their whereabouts and can also be used to manage the application and recognition of Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUEs).
The engaging presentations were made by Ms. Marsha Boyce, Communications and Projects Coordinator for Caribbean RADO and Dr. Harlan Vanterpool MD, Chief Doping Control Officer for the BVI National Anti-Doping Commission.
"It was pleasing to see the enthusiasm and keen interest shown by participants during our interactive Clean Sport Workshops in Virgin Gorda and Tortola," said Ms. Boyce who flew in from Barbados for the events. "Education is crucial to the success of the Clean Sport movement. It's important for all athletes and athlete support personnel, for example coaches, managers, physios and doctors to be exposed to the right information and to have access to the relevant resources in the fight against doping in sport. We at the Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organization look forward to our continued partnership with the British Virgin Islands Olympic Committee in support of its anti-doping programme."
Building on the long-standing relationship with the Ministry of Health and Social Development to promote Long Term Athlete Development and health through physical literacy, the BVIOC worked with Ms. Patrice Maduro, Public Health Nutritionist and Ms. Harmonie Brewley-Massiah, National Epidemiologist of the Ministry's Public Health Unit to share critical information on sports nutrition.
"We are keenly aware that BVI's athletes need guidance and information on nutrition and to be able to make the distinction between good and bad - or 'malnutrition, said Ms. Brewley-Massiah and Ms. Maduro. "The session with the attendees - both adults and juniors - was not just an opportunity to share information but also a chance for us to get a measure of the level of awareness and dietary practices of this segment of the community. We plan to conduct more of these interactive programmes with athletes and to make sure that they have access to the support and resources to build and maintain a healthy diet that will lead to optimal physical and mental performance both on the field of play and at work or college."
The session at the HLSCC was attended by representatives for archery, athletics, basketball, cycling, football, netball, sailing, softball/baseball, taekwondo and volleyball. In Virgin Gorda, the presentation was attended by coaches for athletics, basketball, cricket, football, softball and volleyball. Attendees across the board were enthusiastic and appreciative of the new information learned by the sessions.
"This was a really good workshop. We've learned a lot and we feel better prepared for what's to come as we look towards entering the international competition arena in 2023," said Sahbumnim Olanzo Boynes of Boynes Taekwondo Academy.
Clean sport and nutrition workshops respectively conducted by Dr. Harlan Vanterpool and the PHU can be arranged through the BVIOC. Contact 541-7845 for further information.