Dr. Andy Van Neutegem leaving Wheelchair Rugby Canada for Own the Podium

(Ottawa, ON – Jan 26) The Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association (CWSA) announced today that Dr. Andy Van Neutegem will be leaving his role as High Performance Director of the Wheelchair Rugby National Team Program to become the Director of Sport Science, Medicine and Innovation at Own the Podium, effective March 1, 2018.

“This is a bittersweet announcement for wheelchair rugby as Andy has been instrumental in the growth and development of the program for more than 10 years.  His contributions have had an indelible impact on the Canadian program and his friendship has been, and will continue to be, one of the most valued in my career” said CEO Catherine Cadieux. 

Dr. Van Neutegem has made significant contributions to wheelchair rugby in Canada, in the areas of program planning, research and innovation, coach education and athlete development.

He was the driving force behind the creation of the wheelchair rugby-specific coach education program, developing content for all three levels of the program with the notable achievement of wheelchair rugby being the first sport in Canada to receive context approval from the CAC for its High Performance Coach curriculum.  

Dr. Van Neutegem and the high performance team also developed a best practice Gold Medal Profile and Podium Pathway – an essential blueprint that will guide the development of Canadian wheelchair rugby athletes for many years to come.

Competitive success was also achieved during his tenure with Team Canada winning two Paralympic medals (one silver and one bronze), one World Championship medal (silver) and a gold medal at wheelchair rugby’s first appearance at the Parapan American Games in 2015.     

“On behalf of our entire organization, I’d like to thank Andy for his invaluable contributions and commitment to wheelchair rugby in Canada.  I know that he will be a valuable asset to Own the Podium and we wish him continued success in the future,” said Vice-President, Laurel Crosby.

A message from Dr. Andy Van Neutegem:

“For the past 10 years, I have had the privilege of working with the most amazing team of players and staff from Wheelchair Rugby Canada.  I leave my position of High Performance Director with incredible memories and friendships that I will cherish for the rest of my life.  I will always be indebted to Cathy Cadieux for the opportunity to work with wheelchair rugby and to the many players, coaches and staff who have enriched my life, and that of my family.  Although moving on is a difficult decision, I am excited about my new role with Own The Podium.  Wherever my travels and work take me, I will always be cheering for wheelchair rugby from the stands!  Go Canada Go!’”

About Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association
Since 1972, the Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association (CWSA) has provided world-class programs and services to Canadians with disabilities and helped them to change their lives through the power of sport. CWSA is the National Sport Organization for wheelchair rugby and supports the sport from the grassroots level (through the Bridging the Gap program) to the club level (through the Podium Club program) up to the national team level.

For more information, please contact:
Ben Parker-Jones
Communications and Marketing Coordinator
Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association
Tel: 613-523-0004
Email: ben@cwsa.ca