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Oklahoma City to Host U.S. Lightweight National Team Operations

by Allison Frederick | Dec 10, 2010
As part of the ongoing structural changes to the U.S. National Team program, USRowing is consolidating its lightweight training center operations at the Oklahoma City National High Performance Center located on the Oklahoma River, a U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Site. The program will be under the direction of head coach John Parker, with the lightweight men coached by Bryan Volpenhein.

PRINCETON, N.J. – As part of the ongoing structural changes to the U.S. National Team program, USRowing is consolidating its lightweight training center operations at the Oklahoma City National High Performance Center located on the Oklahoma River, a U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Site. The program will be under the direction of head coach John Parker, with the lightweight men coached by Bryan Volpenhein. 

Parker served as the USRowing lightweight men’s head coach in 2007 and 2008 and was named director and head coach of the Oklahoma City National High Performance Center in September of 2009. This past summer at the center, Parker selected the under 23 lightweight four, which went on to win a bronze medal at the 2010 World Rowing Under 23 Championships in Brest, Belarus.


Volpenhein assisted Parker when the U.S. won a silver medal in the lightweight men’s eight and a bronze medal in the lightweight women's quadruple sculls at the 2009 World Rowing Championships. Volpenhein was hired as an assistant coach at the Oklahoma City National High Performance Center in August of this year.

“While many lightweights have already relocated to Oklahoma City in 2010, the move will consolidate operations and bring all of the top athletes together in one location,” Parker said. “USRowing's goal with this move is to provide the best training opportunities and the best opportunity for success to the camp-selected lightweight men’s four and other lightweight crews.”

In addition to serving as home to the lightweight national team, the center will continue to serve as a development location for all athletes with national team aspirations, including heavyweight men, open weight women and adaptive athletes.

The Oklahoma City High Performance Center was created in October of 2008 as a partnership between USRowing and the Oklahoma City Boathouse Foundation, with support from Oklahoma City University.  It provides a year-round residency program for male and female athletes that includes subsidized housing, training tables, job mentoring, basic medical coverage, tuition waivers and individual race sponsorship support to the athletes pursuing their Olympic aspirations.

The OKC National High Performance Center is headquartered in the newly-opened Devon Boathouse, a $10 million facility offering the world’s first dynamic rowing tank, a hypoxic training chamber providing high-altitude training, extensive strength and conditioning facilities and state-of-the-art technology.

OKC National High Performance Center programming incorporates all aspects of elite-athlete sport performance with an emphasis on biomechanics, training methodology, strength and conditioning, physiology, video analysis, sports medicine, nutrition and psychology.

USRowing is a nonprofit organization recognized by the United States Olympic Committee as the governing body for the sport of rowing in the United States. USRowing’s official suppliers include Boathouse Sports, Filippi, Croker Oars, Rudy Project, Concept 2, Nielsen Kellerman, Powerhouse Timing and PowerHTV. USRowing also receives generous support from the National Rowing Foundation. For more information, visit www.usrowing.org. USRowing has joined forces with Team Arnstein to help ensure the U.S. team's success leading up to the 2012 Olympic Games under a new corporate sponsorship campaign, The Row to London. For more information, please visit www.teamarnstein.com.

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