Dear KNZ Athletes, Parents, Coaches and Friends,
A new era!
With Karate entering a new era, an Olympic era, KNZ are keen to ensure that our athletes have access to opportunities that will enable them to perform to the highest level. With two new policies recently endorsed by the KNZ Executive Board, the Coaching Council and all Regional Councils are actively designing regional frameworks that will allow our athletes to meet the set prerequisites in these policies.
They are a first step in creating visible pathways for you: the aspiring, credible and committed athletes. With this new professional and transparent approach both KNZ and you are held accountable.
What happens next?
As these new policies gradually come into effect, you will have to meet a number of set prerequisites before selectors can consider you eligible for selection. The eligible pool of athletes (those that have met at least the minimum prerequisites stipulated within the policies) will be measured by selectors using the performance based guidelines stipulated in the KNZ bylaws and other supporting performance criteria.
As regional frameworks are gradually being implemented, you must abide by the new policies by attending the available KNZ endorsed events. We are working on having recognized regional tournaments and squad sessions in place by the end of June and on rolling out fitness testing in the second half of the year.
By the time selections for Oceania Championships 2018 come along, you will have had all the opportunities to fully meet selection prerequisites to be considered for selection. For earlier tournaments where the full prerequisite framework may not be fully rolled out in time yet, selectors will look at whether you attended the available sanctioned trainings and tournaments at that time.
You need to note that the prerequisites in the policies are minimum requirements and selectors will look favourably on athletes that have performed beyond this minimum. If you do not meet prerequisites you will be excluded from selection.
What is the envisaged outcome?
This top-down approach will foster those of you already of a higher level and allow you to work towards international elite status. The implementation of the required regional frameworks will lead to a growth in regional capacity, which in turn will lead to more participation at grass roots and development levels.
Having a clear route from the club to the region, from the region to national squad eligibility, and from there to national team selection, will instill responsibility and dedication in those of you that want to set goals and progress. Everybody will be measured by the same guidelines and everybody will be expected to have a dedicated approach to becoming a national team member. Visible – Measurable – Achievable – Credible!
It is envisaged that by end of June 2017, all regions confirm regional coaches, scheduled regional tournaments and squad sessions which the KNZ Executive Board will then endorse. These will become the only recognized events when checking whether you as an athlete have met selection prerequisites. Of course, you should attend as many other events as you can, but the ones we will identify are a must!
Fitness testing will roll out regionally in the second half of 2017 and one mandatory test will take place before the end of this year in each region. After that, there will be a minimum of two per year, and potentially extra ones as you get into the athletes’ pool! Competition for a spot will be fierce.
The July Camp is crucial to meet KNZCC2 2.2(b). Especially if you did not make one or both prior camps! And don’t forget, during this rolling out phase selectors will take into account to what extent frameworks were in place when selecting athletes for upcoming tournaments this year.
They will not hold the lack of infrastructure against you for events that occur within a year from having the full framework operational. However, as outlined earlier, as the framework is gradually implemented, you will be expected to attend those sessions and tournaments as they become available.
We feel that with this new structure in place, you the athletes have a tangible way forward. You know what is required and you know where you all stand. This is what is needed to measure up here in New Zealand with a view to conquer the world stage. It starts now!
Check it out!
You can find the new policies on the Policies Page under the Coaching Council section of the website.
Yours in Karate,
KNZ National Coaching Coordinator and Coaching Council Chair