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Western Isles Island Games Association
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Athletics, Cycling and Triathlon Squad Development Weekend
Badaguish Lodges: 24th to 26th October 2014

Badaguish Development Weekend
Sprint Squad at Inverness Running Track

Badaguish Development Weekend
Endurance Squad at Badaguish Lodges

Badaguish Development Weekend
Cycling Squad at Badaguish Lodges

A 26 strong WIIGA athletics, cyclkng and triathlon development squad gathered at Badaguish near Aviemore last weekend (24 – 26 October) for a hugely successful training and information camp. While the upcoming NatWest Island Games Jersey 2015 wasn’t far from thoughts with it being only 8 months away now, the focus was also very much on future games, and creating an on-going development opportunity and pathway. As well as those who have met the WIIGA standards, this new initiative - organised by the athletics team, led by manager, Mairi Levack - also saw others showing potential given the opportunity to be involved. This included a number of promising youngsters, as WIIGA continues to build on recent successes and looks to the future. Follow this link to read a full report on what the cycling squad got up to over the weekend.

The weekend was also a great team bonding opportunity as the younger guys mixed with the more established squad members who have been at previous games. The aim of the camp was to give these athletes – young and old - something clear to aim for, as they see that they can also be part of the Island Games experience with further hard work and progression. The final squad selection will be made in April / May, so there is still an opportunity for all eligible athletes to stake a place in the team.

Badaguish Development Weekend
Dean Robertson giving talk on Nutrition and Diet

There were fascinating information sessions on Nutrition and Diet, and Strength and Conditioning delivered with real passion by Edinburgh based Dean Robertson of Elysium Personal Training; and Jane Williams from Stirling University gave an interesting and helpful presentation on Sports Psychology. In addition to that the endurance runners, sprinters and cyclists also had various training sessions. A busy and rewarding weekend all in !

Badaguish Development Weekend
Talk on Sports Psychology by Jane Williams

Donnie MacLeod who won gold over 800m and silver over 400m at the NatWest Island Games Bermuda 2013 was really encouraged by the gathering – “ It’s been great to see many of the squad who were in Bermuda, and also to see the squad develop and move on with new athletes coming through. Hopefully this can be something that happens every second year, as it really helps to keep the momentum going, and gives you a focus.”

Eilidh Mackenzie, who took gold over 1500m along with 2 bronze medals (800m and 4x400m relay) in Bermuda, thought the training camp was a great idea, particularly for bringing in new squad members – “I think it must be quite tough for people to come into it who don’t know everyone. There are a lot of people who have been there every year. So it’s really important for the people who haven’t been on the team before to be here. There was a really strong team spirit too, which is what it’s all about.”

One of the newcomers to the squad was triathlete and mountain biker, Kirsty MacPhee, sister of double gold and double bronze Bermuda medalist Kerry. Kirsty has been inspired by her sister Kerry’s achievements since then in making Scotland’s Commonwealth Games Mountain biking team, and would love to follow in her big sister’s footsteps – “I plan to work towards Jersey, and I’ll see if I can get stronger on the bike. If I can get the work done you never know. We’ll see!”

Badaguish Development Weekend
Abbie and Jenny doing some work on their relay handovers

Jenny Mactaggart was only 16 when she was part of the bronze medal winning 4x400m women’s relay team in Bermuda. Jenny, who recently started studying at University in Glasgow, was particularly pleased to see many of her peers from the athletics clubs in Stornoway, North Uist and South Uist & Eriskay now breaking into the development squad. She felt it had been a great learning weekend - “It’s been really good to all get together, and I’ve really enjoyed seeing my old training pals from SRAC. It’s been particularly useful to get so much information about diet, nutrition, sports psychology and training that we can take away and work on and find out more about, and I think there’s a really clear development opportunity for all of us. The training was also really good - in particular the chance to do some relay work.

Badaguish Development Weekend
Eilidh and Ross also working on their relay handovers

Badaguish Development Weekend
It wasn't all relay work - Andrew takes flight at the long jump pit

Badaguish Development Weekend
BBC Alba were there to cover the weekend for An Latha

The WIIGA athletics and cycling management teams would like to thank both the NatWest Sports Development Programme for the grant, and West Coast Energee for the sponsorship, which made the weekend possible. There was a real buzz as the Jersey 2015 Games appear on the horizon and, with many youngsters involved in the squad, the future looks very bright for our islands athletes’ continued success over the coming years at the NatWest Island Games!

Badaguish Development Weekend
Relay handover drills were an important part of the weekend
!

Badaguish Development Weekend
Cycling Squad looking to Kirsty for inspiration!

Badaguish Development Weekend

Badaguish Development Weekend
The covered area at Badaguish provided welcome shelter from the rain.

Badaguish Development Weekend
Sprinters at the track in Inverness

Badaguish Development Weekend
Cyclist heading for the hills!

Link to full report on what the cycling squad got up to over the weekend.


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Western Isles Island Games Association
Comann Geamannan Eileanach nan Eilean Siar