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Ottawa Lions summer camp – where your coach is an Olympian

By Ottawa Sports Pages, for Ottawa Lions Track-and-Field Club

Tim Nedow wears many hats.

He’s the summer camps director for the Ottawa Lions Track-and-Field Club, helping organize programming for young athletes ages seven to 14. He’s the Lions’ youth program director, as well as a high school and university throwing coach. He’s got a degree in computer game development.

Oh, and he also happens to be a two-time Olympian.

Nedow competed in the shot put at the Tokyo and Rio Olympic Games. The 32-year-old was a silver medallist at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games and he’s twice won bronze at the Commonwealth Games.

This summer, he’ll be busy with the Lions’ popular summer camps. Hosted at the Terry Fox Athletic Facility next to Mooney’s Bay, the camp aims to develop all-around athleticism.

In the morning, campers will focus on various track and field disciplines before diving into other activities in the afternoon. They’ll use the space around Mooney’s Bay to play soccer, baseball or other sports, visit the beach, and explore Canada’s largest playground and nearby hiking trails.

The bonus of summer camp is the extra time to develop skills, Nedow highlights. Unlike youth practice, which is an hour and a half, campers will have up to four hours each morning to dive into a discipline.

“It’s a great introduction to the sport,” Nedow underlines.

He would know. An accomplished athlete in shot put and discus, Nedow has jumped head-first into coaching since retiring after the Tokyo Olympics, which took place in summer 2021.

He had coached his brother Tom when he was in high school, helping him to a throwing scholarship in the United States, but first started formally coaching with the Lions in September 2022.

In addition to the club’s regular programming, Nedow also visits schools to give students a chance to experience a Lions-style youth practice, and he works with Ausome Ottawa, an organization that provides athletes with autism safe opportunities to be active.

With few paid jobs in Canadian track-and-field, Nedow jumped at the chance to take on the Lions’ job. He’s found it to be a very rewarding gig so far. Nedow coaches kids ages six to 12 in the club’s youth program and helps them learn the basics of track and field.

“The thing I like about my practice is when the kids are really hungry to participate and want to be there,” Nedow signals. “They give me a great effort and it’s so much fun.”

Now retired from competition, Nedow’s world has opened up. Many athletes pack on the pounds when they stop training for high performance, but Nedow always found it difficult to add the extra weight needed for his power sport. He’s down 30 lbs. since retirement.

Nedow still throws every once in a while, but he’s using his time and freedom to explore other activities. He’s rock climbing and golfing more, instead of just training.

And he’s coaching. This summer, with the sun shining and Mooney’s Bay glistening, Nedow will be enjoying his new passion.

“[The campers] have a chance to hopefully fall in love with track and field,” he highlights, “just like I did at their age.”

Find out more about the Ottawa Lions’ summer camps on the club’s website.

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