Volleyball Canada’s move to Richmond next year means the Langley Events Centre will also be impacted.
Beginning January 2017, Volleyball Canada’s women’s national team training centre will move west to Richmond from Winnipeg.
And while the Richmond Olympic Oval will serve as the team’s home training base, the LEC will serve as the home court for some of the women’s teams local competitions.
This should also benefit the Trinity Western Spartans volleyball program.
“I think it will be really advantageous for us to have access to the people who are training here full-time, so we can come and play scrimmages or we can have our women come and watch or we can have a national team coach come to our practice as a guest coach,” said TWU women’ assistant coach Lies Reimer, who was part of the bid committee that brought the team to Richmond.
“Anytime you can have touch points with the national centre of your sport, it’s only going to inspire athletes to pursue it longer and to see themselves in those shoes. So, the closer it is to where we live and train, the better.
“Also, logistically, the access we have to the centre will be really helpful as far as having more people tryout for Canada on a regular basis. I think it’s beneficial because we won’t have to travel far for national team tryouts and our athletes will feel more comfortable and those little things can make a difference.”
With the centre in Richmond and their competitive venue in Langley, the Spartans will have every opportunity to see the best volleyball players in Canada and, with that, have a better understanding of what it takes to get to that level.
“There’s an inspiration component to it,” said Spartans coach Ryan Hofer.
“With our national team close by, the best players in the country will be right around the corner. Whether it’s going to watch them play or getting the chance to train with them or just having them in to talk and connect, I think it’ll be a real encouragement to have that vision right next door.”