Article By: JOE ZEMBA Special to the Press
Three time Olympian and professional volleyball player Tayyiba Haneef-Park appeared in Catasauqua at a volleyball clinic hosted by Barry Lovelace, owner of the Barry Lovelace Athlete Training Academy at Lehigh Valley Christian High School in the former Lincoln Gym in Catasauqua.
Haneef-Park, a 6-7 outside hitter/ opposite who recently played in her third Olympics this past summer in London, used Lovelace's training as part of her workout program.
"This clinic provided local volleyball players and coaches access to a 3-time Olympian player and all the insight and knowledge that comes with that, it was definitely the opportunity of a lifetime for anyone who plays or coaches," said Lovelace.
The Clinic with Haneef-Park took place on Dec. 14, from 6:30-8 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 15, from 8-11:30 a.m.
Haneef-Park was very affable and hit the floor during drills as much as her students. Just some of her recent career highlights:
Haneef- Park was an outstanding college player for Long Beach State in California. Her clinic drew middle school, high school and college volleyball players from Maryland, Ohio and Pennsylvania and a college coach from Ohio. Local college players from Lafayette, Kutztown and Cabrini College. There were 32 athletes who got personalized instruction, including the AVC Player of the Year, Taylor Gotshall, who has been a disciple of Lovelace since her freshman year.
The Olympian didn't miss any of the fundamentals in digging she showed the girls each one personally. Haneef-Park demonstrated both pop-up and roll up on digs.
Haneef-Park fired up the intensity with spikes to the girls who begin play as young as fifth grade. She told them, "be ready to use your body."
Lovelace covered the training part of the clinic focusing on athletic movement with flexible resistance (bands), core training, plyometric training, endurance training as well as footwork and quickness and reaction drills. All of these exercises and techniques are used by club to an Olympic player, and nearly 200,000 athletes worldwide with great success.
The athletes enjoyed the training and had smiles on their face before, during and after the training with Lovelace. Many ask if they can do more at the end of the clinic.
Haneef-Park spent day two on hitting with step-by-step techniques to help the athletes improve their hitting percentage. She spent plenty of time with each athlete where she saw the need. At the conclusion, Haneef-Park talked to the athletes and emphasized the need to work hard off the court as well and to continue to practice and perfect the techniques she showed them. She also brought both of her silver medals and passed them around.
The overall question heard during day two and after the clinic was, "when can you both come back?"
Lovelace said, "This is what I love and this is what Tayyiba loves, which is why I was so excited to be working with her. We both have the same philosophies when it comes to working with young athletes and that is respect them and help them every step of the way. I feel this clinic did that and more."
For more, visit www.barrylovelace.com or call 610-403-3220.
MAJOR INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION: 2012 - FIVB World Grand Prix (Gold) ... Olympic
Games (Silver). 2011 – Montreux Volley Masters (Fourth Place) ... FIVB World Cup
(Silver). 2009 –Pan American Cup (Fourth); FIVB World Championship Qualification
Tournament – NORCECA Pool G (Gold). 2008 - FIVB World Grand Prix (Fourth
Place) ... Olympic Games (Silver Medal). 2007 – Pan American Games (Bronze
Medal) … FIVB World Grand Prix (Eighth Place) … NORCECA Championship (Silver
Medal) … FIVB World Cup (Bronze Medal).