MANILA – According to American consultant Wilfred “Bill” Schnier, the Philippine track and field should include more female athletes in future sports competition’s women’s events.
In the 28th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games held in Singapore, half or 23 of the 46 gold medals were contested in women’s events. But only one Filipina, Kayla Richardson, bagged a gold from the said games. Aside from Richardson, Caleb Stuart, Eric Cray and Christopher Ulboc were also able to take home gold medals from the games.
Of the 36 trackers in the PH Athletics sent to the SEA Games, only 12 were Filipinas.
“We certainly need to have more women because they count in the medals just the same as the men… It’s been my experience that teams that do best have the most athletes, so we have to get them from the little children going up,” Schnier said.
“The grassroots level, training program and coaching also need to be addressed. We only have one female coach in Lerma (Baluitan),” he added.
Schnier, a coach in the University of Cincinnati, was consulted by the Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association to assess and help boost their programs.
Aside from emphasizing the need of more female athletes, Schnier also recommended that male and female athletes alike be trained for long-distance sports events. His statement stemmed from the actuality that no Filipino delegation was sent to compete in the men’s and women’s 5,000m, 10,000m and 20K walk in the SEA Games.