All Kenyan marathoners start women’s training camp

Kenyan long-distance runner Mary Gugi The 33-year-old woman said she often felt alarmed while training as a young athlete in Nyahururu, a town in Kenya’s Southern Rift Valley. Ngugi founded Nala Track Club, Kenya’s first all-girls training camp. Young athletes in her Naratrak club are mentored and mentored by female coaches.

“We needed to provide them with a safe place to be themselves, a place where they could train without feeling like they were always in the shadow of a man,” she said in an interview. olympic dot comNgugi explains that although she has fond memories of camping, she knew other girls and women weren’t sharing their experiences.

“I was lucky. “The boys kept chasing their dreams. It’s the girls’ fault that they forgot their dreams when they had a baby.”

Young female athletes are also being manipulated by agents and administrators, Ms Ngugi shared, explaining that athletes feel pressured to comply or be ejected. Coming from a humble background, I don’t want to go back there.

October 2021, Agnes TiropA talented 25-year-old long-distance runner who represented Kenya at the Tokyo Olympics has been murdered in his home. The shock and horror that followed prompted athletes like Ngugi to speak up and stand up for those who were victims of gender-based violence.

Ngugi originally formed the Women’s Athletics Alliance “to help the next generation avoid the suffering experienced by so many female athletes.” She realized more needed to be done to support young female athletes. And I thought it wasn’t just about mentorship, just talking to these girls. Something needs to be done to give them a safe place,” Ngugi said.

The Nara Track Club was born and now has 5 athletes aged 16 to 22 with plans to expand to 12 runners. Ngugi’s camp not only supports training, but also pays for the athlete’s education and encourages them to attend school. Note that many young women who train in camps have had to drop out of school because the camps do not support their education or their parents. I can’t pay my tuition.

126th Boston Marathon.Photo: Kevin Morris

“We also want to empower them to have a say in society, not just on sports issues. When they are there, they can communicate and speak up.” Ngugi is also working to encourage female coaches and mentors.Collaboration with her former coach Francis KamauAthletics Kenya, and the UK-based Women’s Coaching Network train women coaches in her hometown.

Ngugi’s short-term goal is to have female coaches working alongside the girls at the Nara Track Club, but she also hopes to encourage fellow athletes to consider coaching once she retires from the sport.

“I want to be on an Olympic team that has not only male coaches, but also several female coaches.

All Kenyan marathoners start women’s training camp

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