A provincial coaching award was a “big surprise” for ￼￼Adam Ingle, who lives in the Guildford area of Surrey and coaches with Vancouver Velocity Speed Skating Club.
Each week in the fall and winter months, he volunteers close to 25 hours of his time to coach speed skaters.
On Monday (May 28), viaSport British Columbia announced Ingle as its 2017 regional/provincial Development Coach of the Year. At the same time, Comox resident Lauren Lan was named recreational/grassroots Coach of the Year, for her work in the cycling world.
Contacted by phone Monday, Ingle said he was told about the award in mid-April.
“I was not even aware that a nomination had been submitted, so it was a big surprise when I was told,” Ingle said. “I still haven’t seen the nomination that was submitted.… To be recognized in speed skating would be a big deal, and I have won the B.C. speed skating association’s coach of the year award before, I believe in the 2014-2015 season, before I left Prince George, but to be honoured among all sports in the province is quite a thrill for me.”
Ingle grew up in the Surrey area and later moved with his family to Prince George, where he got into coaching his speed-skater son.
“At a competition event, his coach wasn’t paying a whole lot of attention and I stepped into the coach’s box. That was 14 years ago,” Ingle recalled.
Upon moving back to Surrey three years ago, he got involved in coaching at the Velocity club, based in Kitsilano.
“I’m there three days a week in-season, and once or twice (a week) in the off-season,” Ingle explained. “My son’s older and stopped skating a number of years ago, and in fact I took on coaching much more after he stopped skating, which isn’t the usual way of doing things but that’s how it worked out.”
It’s all volunteer work.
“When you consider the actual sessions, the travel and all that, the planning and communications, it’s probably 20 to 25 hours a week during the peak part of the season, from September to March,” Ingle noted, when asked how much time he spends coaching.
viaSport British Columbia is a not-for-profit organization “created with the support of the Provincial Government in 2011 to lead the province’s sport sector to build a stronger, more effective system that brings more families to the field of play, more fans into the stands, more athletes to the podium, and more sports events to the province.”
The organization’s 2017 Coach of the Year award winners will be honoured during BC Sports Hall of Fame’s 2018 Induction Gala, held Thursday (May 31) at Parq Vancouver casino. Both Ingle and Lan will each receive a bursary.
In an award bio, viaSport says Ingle is known for “being the cornerstone” of the Velocity club in Vancouver. “(He) encourages the importance of goal setting and works individually with his athletes to attain milestones. His invaluable presence has led to increased focus and dedication for the club’s athletes. An NCCP certified coach, Adam continues to further his coaching knowledge by seeking mentorship opportunities with national and international level coaches.”
Ingle coaches both short- and long-track speed skating.
“The closest refrigerated long track facilities are located in Fort St. John and Calgary, and I will travel there to coach, yes,” Ingle said. “In the southern part of B.C. it’s mostly short-track, because that can be done in the hockey rinks, but I try to encourage skaters to do long-track as much as possible.”
Trained coaches are “catalysts for positive experiences that extend well beyond sport,” according to viaSport CEO Sheila Bouman.
“Because of their leadership, athletes are empowered to realize and develop their untapped potential,” she stated. “It’s our pleasure to recognize these phenomenal leaders and their commitment to give back to their community.”