Among my club’s kids there are three brothers of Colombian roots. They were going to spend a long holiday in Bogota last summer, so I arranged for them to train in Mr Del Valle’s club at Colombia’s capital tracks. Ever the lovely and humble gentleman, thanks to Elías the two older brothers had the opportunity to skate with some of the best athletes in the world, experiencing firsthand the extremely hard work being done daily (as you can see on the video below). Although managing the national team those days, Mr Del Valle was kind enough to check my kids now and then, delivering much appreciated advice. He even went to say that they had good technique, which is sort of a flattering remark for me!
As for the little one (9 years old) he was lucky to learn and train with Cecilia Baena’s club: she can be seen in the video guiding a large group of kids.
The three boys had then the chance to get private lessons with world champ Cristian Diazgranados, with whom they went on correcting specific technique (check a few useful drills in the video).
In short, it was an unforgettable and rewarding experience for my young skaters; we all can witness from the video the impressive infrastructure, the sheer amount of athletes and the relentless work ethic they have over there. No wonder Colombians destroy the opposition in each and every event during the international season!
I’d like to thank my good friend Luis Clement, and a big thanks to Elías, Chechi and Cristian for their input to our sport development day in day out.
M. Bresin (video: Jairo Morales)