Sunday, 02 April 2017 07:40

Jon Chetham - Coach of the Year 2017! Featured

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Volleyball England awarded Jon Chetham the title of Coach of the Year 2017 at the National Cup Finals on Saturday.  The Volleyball England annual awards include a number of categories and recognise the success of so many volunteers within the Sport of Volleyball.  Coach of the Year is a hotly contested category and Jon fought off competition from over 20 other entries to take the title this year.  He was presented with his award at the National Volleyball Cup Finals in Kettering on Saturday by Janet Inman.  After receiving his award Jon then presented the winners medals and trophy to IBB Polonia who had just beaten Sheffield in a thrilling final.



There are so many of you within our Club that give up your time to help support us all in playing volleyball and encouraging others to do so.  Therefore this year in addition to Jon's nomination (which you can read below) we also nominated:-

-      Young Official of the Year – Sophie Lomax – who many of you will have seen refereeing Riga games and those of other local clubs; and

-       Club of the Year – to celebrate everything we have achieved as a Club over the last 12 months with expanding membership, tie ups with the local Universities and more participants than ever at the Thursday Club night sessions.  

Young Official was ultimately won by Jake from Nuneaton and Club of the Year by South Hants Volleyball Club.

We would like to say a massive thank you to Sophie and everyone else that volunteers and gives up their time to keep the Club operating for all of our benefit.  There is a huge amount of effort that goes on behind the scenes to keep us all playing and to ensure we can continue to share our love and passion for the Sport.  We couldn’t do it without you all – so a MASSIVE thank you!

Coach of the Year 2017 Award entry

Jon qualified as a coach many years ago and many local clubs have benefitted from his coaching experience.  He started coaching CWR NVL ladies in 2012.  Jon said he would help out "temporarily" until we found a coach.  5 years later…we've not let him escape and here's why! 

Development of volleyball

Jon's passion and enthusiasm for volleyball is outstanding.  He goes above and beyond to develop the sport and invests personal time and energies. 

- Coventry University - Jon brokered a relationship between CWR and Coventry University providing students with local playing opportunities.  Students are embedded within our team – Jon writes up their scholarship reports/attends feedback sessions.  He is helping the University establish a formal volleyball programme - including finding a paid coach.  In the interim, Jon has given up time to coach the University teams.

- Junior development – recognising young players as the lifeblood of the sport, Jon always supports junior volleyball.  He identifies talent within the Club, provides supported playing opportunities and encourages attendance at regional junior sessions. 

- Links - His links with Rugby and Nuneaton have enabled Riga to signpost new players to other club's where appropriate - truly collaborating and ensuring the region benefits rather than just one Club.


Commitment to coaching

Jon's commitment is unquestionably amazing. In one weekend he coached four Riga home games plus the Coventry University training before back to work on Monday for a rest!

  • Training coach – Jon plans every session, copes with changing numbers, varies sessions and brings creativity - be it using tennis balls to improve spiking action or devising engaging drills each week.  He runs sessions with our two teams where individual skill levels vary - his training ensures everyone is involved to their ability and helps build true club spirit.
  • Match coach – Jon is always calm and promotes fair play and sportsmanship.  He videos matches (and sometimes training!), watches hours of footage, travels to watch opposition matches, prepares the statistics (which he's been on training for) and shares information with us to help us get the best performance. 
  • Off the court - is just as impressive and creative - he organises treasure hunts on away weekends, quizzes at Christmas meals - all to bring the team together.  His approach is fully inclusive regardless of background of individuals. 
  • Club support – Jon is always willing to offer his experience and advice to others.  He's helped Riga NVL men (who have no coach) at games - a massive boost to team morale - and encouraged Nick Chemin to get qualified as a coach and register. 

Above all, what makes Jon's coaching style special is his emotional intelligence to read players feelings and address these.  He communicates with everyone helping to keep up morale and ensure individuals achieve their volleyball potential. 

Consequently, our membership is growing significantly from 2012 where we had 10 regular players.  Now, we have 35 female members – 13 registered as NVL players that regularly attend training and games.  

Bottom line is – we'd be lost without him.


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