Occassional thoughts about orienteering
Monday, April 17, 2006
Two projectsI've spent some time in the last day thinking about two projects. One is to work on a map of the KU campus. We plan to use the map for December's Kansas O' Champs. The other project was an idea I've thought about off and on for years -- to collect information from a bunch of different sources on "high performance" programs and create something like a menu of options.
The mapping project is pretty self explanatory. But, the other project probably takes some explanation.
I have a standard set of questions for thinking about how people train. Take a look at H is for Hammer to get an example.
The idea for looking at "high performance" programs would be to develop a similar list of questions and then answer them for a bunch of different programs (say, GHO, the French National Team, OK Linne, Texas Junior O' Camp, and so on). Answering these questions for be fun and the work could be easily farmed out to three or four interested people. It wouldn't really take much time -- maybe a month to get a good set of questions, maybe a month to get some answers, and maybe another month or two to make sense of the information.
At the end, you'd have a set of descriptions of different programs. You could find commonalities and differences. You would almost certainly get some good ideas. And, maybe most importantly, you'd probably be able to get a good idea of what it takes to implement different ideas.
The outcome of this sort of project, would (or rather "could") be a menu -- a bunch of different ideas with different "prices." I think that would be interesting and useful.
As I wrote, this second project has been an idea I've thought about off and on for years (since at least 1989), it came back to mind when I was reading some discussion on Attackpoint about USOF plans and high performance programs.
I posted a comment to the Attackpoint discussion and made two points: (1) that instead of rushing a plan, it might make sense to identify some different options for USOF to consider (which would probably involve something like the project I described above) and (2) that in my experience the membership of USOF is supportive of the "sport side" of orienteering.
My ideas went over like a lead balloon. Vlad didn't actually dismiss the idea, but didn't embrace it either. That doesn't bother me at all. In fact, I think Vlad would probably be receptive to at least some of what I'd like to look at. I've got a lot of respect for Vlad and he's often got some very interesting (even good!) ideas. Sergey dismissed my second point (I'd even go so far as to say he ridiculed it). Now it may be childish, but when I read Sergey's response, I just thought, "to hell with it." My second thought was that if Sergey is right -- that only about 4 percent of USOF membership supports O' as a "sport" -- it would be irresponsible to advocate for the organization to treat O' as a sport.
My mapping project will certainly be more rewarding. So, on with the mapping! posted by Michael | 7:49 PM
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