Inspirational table tennis coach Tim Holtam has been recognised for his incredible work in the local community by being named ‘Coach of the year’ at the Brighton & Hove Sport and Physical Activity Awards.
Tim has had an unbelievable impact on table tennis in the city, coaching an incredible 30 hours each week at Brighton City Table Tennis Club, Patcham High School, and the local universities.
He said: “I set up Brighton City TTC in February 2007 and I can honestly say it has been one of the most enjoyable things I have ever done. Managing a club has opened so many doors for me and I have met so many new and interesting people. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without the ping pong club to have to go to every Friday evening. It sets up my weekend perfectly.”
He is a level 2 coach, and is working towards his level three qualification. In 2012, he has played an integral role in the City’s Ping! programme, helping the South East region to join in with the popular social ping pong project that has been highly rated by Sport England.
Tim has also developed afterschool clubs at Patcham three nights a week, coached the City College Under 19’s Boys to the national schools final, and taken Sussex University players to gold medals in the BUCS individual championships.
Tim believes that table tennis can do much more than help just physical health and fitness.
He said: “I really enjoy seeing the positive impact table tennis has on youngsters that have ADHD and other behavioural issues. Ping pong was definitely my saviour when I was in year 8/9 and needed a focus in life. Personally, I would like to become more involved with local pupil referral units, special schools and young offenders institutes – I find working with these young people to be most rewarding.
I truly believe that there are no limits to what table tennis can achieve.”
He is committed to using table tennis to develop young people positively and is an expert role model for young people at Brighton City Table Tennis Club, six of whom he has mentored to take their initial table tennis qualifications themselves.
For Tim this is just another way to pay back the sport that has given him so much: “I really enjoy introducing young people to table tennis and motivating them to want to be the best at a sport that has been so good to me.”
If you would like to follow in Tim’s footsteps and begin your own career in coaching table tennis, why not contact the English Table Tennis Association’s Coaching and Leadership Programme Co-ordinator Victoria Crawley on [email protected] or 01424 456205