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IOC selects ECU's Walker Center

(Dec. 15, 1998)   —   The International Olympic Committee (IOC), through its Solidarity Commission, has selected the L.T. Walker International Human Performance Center at East Carolina University for designation as an official international high-level training center of the IOC.

The center on the ECU campus was established in the spring of 1997 to serve elite athletes, coaches, trainers and sports administrators from around the world. Much of its work has been to test and evaluate an athlete's physiology and performance and teach athletes, their coaches and others the latest scientific methods for training and improving performance.

"Being chosen for designation by the International Olympic Committeee is indeed a great honor for the Walker Center and for East Carolina University," Chancellor Richard Eakin said.

"The Walker Center, thanks to our outstanding faculty in the School of Health and Human Performance and to the leadership of Dr. LeRoy Walker, has clearly demonstrated to the IOC the value of the services we provide to the world's athletes, coaches and sports administrators. We look forward with anticipation to further success and good news in the coming months."

After a rigorous search process conducted by a team from the IOC's Solidarity Commission, sites in 15 countries were selected. The Walker Center, one of only three sites in the United States, provides sophisticated physiologic and biomechanic testing and evaluation of Olympic athletes from throughout the world.

The center is the only facility in the world selected by the International Olympic Committee on the strength of the testing and evaluation performed on athletes. Other centers were selected for their long-term training facilities or on-site coaching expertise in one or more sports. The other two centers in the United States include the Bolles School in Jacksonville, Florida, and the International Center of Savannah in Georgia.

The United States Olympic Committee will have oversight and coordination responsibilities for the use of the three centers inthe United States by foreign athletes. The USOC has indicated that all foreign athletes coming to the United States for training under the IOC Solidarity Commission scholarship program will be required to undergo benchmark testing and evaluation at the Walker Center before settling in to their training programs at either the Jacksonville or Savannah center. A

lbert A. Delia, executive director of the Walker Center said, "We are most pleased and excited about the opportunities this selection creates for the center. The improvements in athletic performance, as a result of the testing and evaluations that we have completed to deate on elite athletes, have surpassed our own highest hopes. This vote of confidence by the IOC in our work gives the Walker Center the chance to play a significant part in the preparation of athletes for the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000."

Around the globe, the IOC selected centers in: Kenya, Senegal, Canada, China, Iran, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar, Korea, Germany, France, Spain, Nauru, and Australia. ###########


Contact: ECU News Bureau | 252-328-6481