Montreal, June 17, 2015 – Coaches at Judo Canada will welcome a new member to their ranks beginning next month as Jean-Pierre Cantin takes over the reins of the Junior and Cadet programs at Montreal’s National Training Centre.
“I always wanted to develop high performance judo in Canada, that has always been a dream for me,” confided the former Olympic athlete, who came ninth at the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games, and who was part-time Junior National coach from 2001-2009.
“It’s almost a return to the source, let’s say. I am already accustomed to the Canadian system and know it well, I speak both languages, people know me. My integration should be fairly quick and easy, and most importantly, I will be able to be effective right away.”
The addition of Jean-Pierre Cantin to the pool of National Team coaches will enrich the depth and breadth of expertise already in place. “Jean-Pierre will permit Judo Canada to provide its athletes with increased coaching excellence. He is a complement to the group, which already comprises Michel Almeida, Janusz Pawlowski, and Sasha Mehmedovic. Our athletes will have a world-class training team,” commented Nicolas Gill, High Performance Director and National Head Coach at Judo Canada.
Cantin will officially take up the position as of July 6th and leaves July 8th for his first international mission – a European tournament with several of the country’s best junior judokas.
Two important competitions are already on his schedule, namely the Cadet World Championships in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina from August 5-9th, and the Junior World Championships from October 23rd-27th in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.
The Quebec-made vision is straightforward: “Athletes’ skills must be developed; they must be capable of training that will enable them to transform into solid senior-level athletes as soon as possible.”
“I will assist them in making the aforementioned transition as quickly and adeptly as possible at the National Training Centre,” added Cantin, who will balance explaining and supporting Judo Canada’s training system to athletes and parents, as well as maintaining ties with provincial structures and organizations.
“People often have difficulty with change because it represents the unknown, so I need to explain that it’s not really an unknown thing because it’s valuable to train more, but, that there is a proper way to do just that,” mused Cantin.
Yet Cantin’s expectations for results remain modest, “I’d like to tell young athletes to step onto the tatami and gain experience – if there’s a medal at the end, even better. I myself will really be focusing on their performance and development in terms of judo itself.”
After having dedicated his energies to his own club – Les Dragons – over the years, the former coach of New Brunswick’s Provincial Teams considers that now is the time to move from Oromocto, New Brunswick to Montreal, Quebec. “I found someone to replace me; all I’d really like is for my former club to continue to develop.”
Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada