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Ground-breaking Level 1 Female Instructor Course held in Dubai

MIES  (Switzerland) - The drive to bolster the basketball coaching profession for women gained momentum in Dubai, UAE, when 15 coaches from Asia, Europe and Oceania attended the first-ever FIBA World Association of Basketball Coaches Level 1 Female Instructor Course.

National Federations were invited to nominate and submit candidates to take part, with a total of 20 countries applying to be part of this inaugural course. 

The course, which ran from June 20 to 22, had the aim of equipping potential instructors with skills such as presentation methods, concepts and approaches, and their application to effectively present to other coaches.

The Instructor Course is the latest step in supporting Women in Basketball, one of FIBA's strategic priorities for the current cycle of 2019–2023.

As part of its aim to increase the role of females at all levels of the sport, one of the goals is for National Federations to recruit and develop more female coaches at all levels.

An example of the commitment to women was seen in 2020 when FIBA's Central Board introduced a rule that requires national teams to have at least one female coach on the bench in all youth world and continental tournaments.

Patrick Hunt, the World Association of Basketball Coaches (WABC) President, along with WABC Executive Committee member Peter Lonergan and WABC Instructor for Instructors, Arnika Patil, conducted the course.

"I am very proud of the work the WABC has undertaken to support FIBA's National Federations in empowering their coach instructors and promoting Women in Basketball," Hunt said.

"This course has been designed to educate, motivate and develop female leaders who are coaches and coach instructors. This week we've witnessed candidates sharing their knowledge, challenges and visions and empowering each other."

Among those attending was Maureen Kris Belen, one of the first female coaches from the Philippines Basketball Association. 

Belen said: "This experience has been life-changing and is definitely on top of my list as I get to work and learn with some of the best female coaches all around the world. Kudos to FIBA and WABC for giving us a platform to enhance our knowledge about the sport, forming a one-of-a-kind group and providing us with the skills to help uplift women in basketball by teaching coaches in our country and abroad."

Another candidate, from the Czech Republic, was Milena Moulisova. She is the Head of Youth Basketball Coach at the Czech Basketball Federation.

Moulisova said: "The Instructor Course was something that I was dreaming about as a coach and lecturer over the last few years because I just really wanted to improve, especially as a lecturer and also as a woman with a leading position in the federation.

"It is incredible how the group of women from all over the world with different backgrounds were immediately on the same page with great enthusiasm, impact, hard work ... ready to share and inspire each other. It happened only thanks to the environment that has been established by the WABC staff.

"FIBA has once again shown a steadfast commitment to fulfilling the objectives set out in its strategic priority Women in Basketball, and specifically the attention to elevating females in the coaching profession. Also, one of the big bonuses of the course is definitely the networking."