Have you ever heard of Vaulting Exchange?
Vaulters have travelled around since forever. Going to competitions or international clinics in other continents is a routine for young athletes of this equestrian sport. But recently, a new kind of interchange has become quite popular among vaulters.
Vaulting Exchange is an opportunity for those who would like to travel and give classes in exchange of lodging and food. In fact, our very own Adele Feuerstein is one of these athletes: She has just came back from Peru, where she spent 2 months giving classes.
In a world that is more and more social everyday, it was just a matter of time until the vaulting world invented it’s very own Airbnb and we at VaultingNews are great enthusiasts of new ways to share and grow into a more creative sport.
Vaulting Exchange is not only a benefit for the vaulters who get to travel, but it could be a good deal for the clubs that receive them:
Let’s just say it might be a much more interesting option than bringing expensive foreign teachers for clubs that might still not have the technical development to receive their trainings.
It’s also not just an option for experienced european vaulters. If you have been vaulting for sometime and would like to travel while adding something to another vaulting community: This might also be an option for you. (Let’s just remember that some experience with teaching is also very important).
We have talked to Bamdad Memarian, a young vaulter from Köln, Germany – for those of you who don’t remember him, I’d higly recomend wacthing this video as soon as you can – he has travelled to South Africa, Zambia, Swaziland, Mauritius and Australia and has worked with a few of Africa’s most promising athletes – Viki Damiani and Lambert Leclezio.
Bamdad has helped in the creation of a vaulting club from scratch in Zambia. He didn’t just go there to teach, he contributed to raising young athletes and creating a new sport. In the end, the young German vaulter brought all of them to Europe to participate in the first ever World Championships for Jrs.
Later on we will tell you more about Bamdad’s adventures, but, for now, let’s learn more about this whole Vaulting Interchange story.
1. If a vaulter wants to do what you did, travelling around and getting involved with vaulting, what is the best way? Contacting the national federations?
I was only employed by the national federation in Mauritius, which was a special case because of the FEI Africa Cup taking place. I think the vaulting community is so well connected these days if someone wants to go to another country to coach vaulting I would advise to contact people who have already been there or vaulters from that country.
2. Do you think this is an option for a young vaulter who wants to travel and get some coaching experience?
Yes, I think it’s a good opportunity when organized and planned correctly.
3. What was your goal with this trip? I imagine you wanted to share your knowledge, but I can also suppose you ended up learning a lot yourself. What lessons do you take back home?
I wanted to travel and have that foreign experience but also to help develop vaulting in other countries. I am very proud that I could help vaulters from 4 different countries on their journey to the junior world championships in Ermelo.
Most of my coaching career was with high performance athletes in Germany so for me to coach and develop vaulting in countries were vaulting is at a very low level or even something completely new, was a new experience for me and was something I had to learn along the way. For example: I would never have thought I could be so excited for the kids I coached in Mauritius taking part in the FEI Africa Cup, a competition which is mostly in walk.
4. Each nation organizes it’s vaulting community in a different way. What do you think are the main differences between the places you have visited? Do they practice in a different way? Are clubs any different from one place to another?
It’s quite hard to tell because everywhere I went I worked with vaulters from different levels and had different roles. It’s interesting to see how people do things differently in other countries.
5. In the past, if a club in my home country Brazil, for an example, wanted to bring a coach from Europe, it would have to pay an extraordinary amount of money. But today with a more connected community and new ways of sharing experiences, we see young athletes wanting to have this international experience you had. What do you think are the pros and the cons of receiving aninterchange vaulter?
In my opinion a country can profit a lot from receiving an interchange vaulter or coach but I think it’s equally important to assist the existing coaches that they don’t need to rely on foreign coaches in order to continue progress. That is something I put focus on when giving clinics especially in places where they had very little knowledge about vaulting.
Would you like to be an Exchange Vaulter? Talk to us and maybe we can help you.
Credits for the pictures: Bamdad Memarian and Arjen Van der Speck