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Belgium women's coach receives Sport Science Award

Dr. Gert Vande Broek with FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F°

Lausanne, Switzerland, April 4, 2014 - Dr. Gert Vande Broek, the coach of the Belgium women’s volleyball team, is the proud recepient of the 2013 FIVB Sport Science Award, which was presented by the FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° during the FIVB Board of Administration meeting on Friday.

Dr. Vande Broek, who is a professor at the University of Leuven, won the award, $5,000 and a special FIVB medal for having brought scientific insights into the practice of volleyball coaching and conducting sport research with unprecedented practical relevance.

How coaches can maximize the proficiency of their players and how coach behaviour can affect both the quality of players' motivation and the extent to which team goals are endorsed has been clarified by Dr. Vande Broek’s work.

"Thank you very much for this award," Dr. Vande Broek told the Board. "It’s not only a big honour for myself but also for my team and for my federation. My federation has two teams at the World Championships so we are improving and having big results, not only youth teams but senior teams as well. This is a big honour for my team. They won the bronze medal at the last European  Championships but the way they did it and how was remarkable. There was a lot of team work and cohesion. They were praised for their leadership skills on the court, solving problems together.

"I would like to thank the Minisity of Sports Chief Executive, the University for giving me the opportunities and the Belgium Volleyball Federation. For myself it is special. In my head I’m a scientist but in my heart I’m a coach so receiving an award is a great feeling personally, thank you very much."

Dr. Vande Broek, who was awarded the Fair Play award at the 2013 European Championship, is the second recipient of the FIVB Sport Science Award after USA’s Dr. Jonathan Charles Reeser, M.D., Ph.D  received the inaugural award in 2011 for his contributions to volleyball.

The FIVB Sport Science award was established in 2010 to recognise significant contributions made in the field of volleyball medicine and science.
The selection process started with nominations from federations, which were put forward to a Selection Committee, which consisted of:

- Coaching Commission President, Mr Stanislav Shevchenko
- Technical Commission President, Mr Jivko Jetchev
- Development Commission President, Mr Saleh Bin Nasser
- Medical Commission President, Dr. Yuichiro Hamu
- Medical Commission Member, Dr. Jacek Kruczynski

The Selection Committee narrowed the choice to three candidates:
1) Dr. Dimitrios Tsoukas (GRE)    Doctor in charge of the Hellenic Volleyball Federation
2) Dr. Gert Vande Broek (BEL)     Coach of the Belgian women's volleyball team
3) Dr. Natalya Babina (KAZ)        Doctor of the Kazakhstan national team

Dr. Gert Vande Broek holds a PHD in Kinesiology and works as chief of staff in the Minister of sports. He published several articles in different Journals like, Journal of Sports Sciences, Psychology of Sport and Exercise, Journal of Teaching in Physical Education.  

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