OTTAWA, ON (November 4, 2021) – Table Tennis Canada congratulates Thorsten Gohl, Table Tennis North’s Executive Director, who tonight will be awarded the Coaching Association of Canada’s (CAC) Impact Award at their virtual 2021 Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala.
Gohl, who is also an Arctic Winter Games and Canada Games coach, and the Chair of Table Tennis Canada’s Coaching Development Committee, has been involved with table tennis in the Northwest Territories for the last eight years. During this time, he has prepared athletes for multi-sport games nationally and internationally and worked with over 15 communities in the Northwest Territories through Table Tennis North’s outreach program.
“On behalf of Table Tennis Canada, I congratulate Thorsten for this great honour,” said Adham Sharara, President of Table Tennis Canada. “Thorsten deserves the award for his tireless work in developing sport in the North. We are very proud that our Coaching Development Chair has been recognized by the Coaching Association of Canada and that his efforts are making a difference. Table Tennis Canada is lucky to have Thorsten as one of its dedicated volunteers. We are very proud of his achievements, and we wholeheartedly congratulate him for receiving the CAC’s Impact Award.”
The CAC’s Impact Award is presented to an individual or organization in recognition of their creation of an innovative event or program that has benefited the sport and coaching community. Earlier this year, Gohl, along with other sports collaborators, introduced a new pilot project in Hay River, NWT which combined table tennis and hockey to improve hand-eye coordination and reaction time. Seven goaltenders aged nine to 15 participated in the program and learned a variety of table tennis drills and games to enhance their balance and reflexes. Due to the pilot project’s success, Table Tennis North and its partners are now looking to start this program in the Sahtu and Beaufort Delta regions by 2022.
The award also highlights the Female Mentorship program that Gohl started and has overseen since 2020, which brings coaches from the three territories together. The program has brought in international speakers like Arctic Winter Games coach Steve Rowe from the United Kingdom, National Junior Team coach Maxime Surprenant from Quebec, and former National Team player Julia Charbonneau from Ontario. Presenting virtual sessions that bring female coaches closer together and starting the process of educating them for the 2023 Canada Games and beyond is a great initiative that will continue to grow.
“There are many innovative programs happening from coast to coast to coast and even beyond the Canadian border. From the Olympic Games movement to playing on an ice table in the middle of a frozen lake in the Northwest Territories, finding fun and effective out-of-the-box projects brings sports together, like table tennis and hockey,” stated Gohl. “The importance of supporting our youth and providing them with knowledge and guidance is key to helping them stay active and to become the best version of themselves.”
“Thorsten Gohl is a force in creating a legacy of women’s leadership in communities throughout the North. His mentorship program for female coaches and the hockey and table tennis program are designed to have a lasting impact in changing the sport landscape for young children, and in setting the stage for the next generation of women coaches,” said Lorraine Lafrenière, Chief Executive Officer of the Coaching Association of Canada.
Watch the virtual live cast of the 2021 Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala via the CAC’s YouTube channel. The broadcast will begin at 7:30pm ET.