LONDON, ENGLAND 09/02/2012: Meghan Montgomery and Tony Theriault Canada's Mixed Coxed Four shake hands after wiingin the LTA Mixed Coxed Four Final B at the London 2012 Paralympic Games at Eton Dorney. (Photo by Matthew Murnaghan/Canadian Paralympic Committee)

Victoria, BC – Rowing Canada Aviron is pleased to announce NextGen Hub partnerships with five distinguished Universities. The University of British Columbia, the University of Victoria, Brock University, Western University, and Trent University/Peterborough Rowing Club have been selected as RCA NextGen Hubs – delivering an uncompromising culture of rowing excellence.  The connection between these NextGen Hubs and their local clubs was an integral component in the overall selection process.

The NextGen Hubs will provide all-encompassing high performance services to identified NextGen rowers. Hubs will provide optimal coach to athlete ratios, extensive performance planning, and enhanced technical coaching capacity. Sport science and sport medicine support will also be embedded within these daily training environments.

“I’m truly excited about the engagement of the rowing community in the process,” said Adam Parfitt, RCA Director, Coach and Athlete Pathways. “They care about Canada’s performance and by putting their hands up, they want to share in the responsibility and process of finding and training our next Olympians.

The NextGen Hubs are part of a wider strategy that both replaces and builds on the learning and work done in the Row to Podium programs. Establishing these partnerships is a significant step forward in the overall RCA NextGen Athlete Strategy. This strategy focuses on enhanced programming at a targeted stage in the athlete development pathway. Talent Identification Programming will be conducted within the NextGen program through partnerships with Provincial Sport Organizations, clubs, schools and institutions.

“These partnerships, as part of the NextGen strategy, will help us find more athletes and train them to a higher standard,” said Parfitt. “The engagement from the Rowing Community in this process has been truly exciting.”

NextGen Hubs were evaluated and selected based on an objective criteria and extensive application process. These environments currently have existing targeted Olympic and Paralympic athletes, embedded coaching support, access to elite training facilities and Sport Science and Sport Medicine programming.

RCA and NextGen Hubs will be forming one management committee to coordinate the overall development and strategic direction of the RCA Hub programming. One of the firsts tasks for the newly identified hub hosts will be to assist in the hiring of the Hub coaches. It is these Hub coaches who will help turn the plans into action.