20 students studying to become trainers were awarded a 3600-euro scholarship each


The 3600-euro scholarships established by the Estonian Olympic Committee and the Sports Training and Information Foundation to promote the education of new trainers  were awarded to 20 students in the bachelor’s and master’s programmes at the University of Tartu and Tallinn University.

Toomas Tõnise, the head of the Sports Training and Information Foundation, the scholarship for future trainers aims to foster the formation of the new generation of trainers.

“The success of Estonian sport depends on committed trainers, and every new bright-eyed trainer means new sport enthusiasts and new wins. It is our job to support them on this path,” Tõnise noted.

As a part of the competition for the scholarship, the students had to submit essays about their preparation for the profession and their expectations about working as a trainer. Liina Luik, who competed in the marathon at the 2016 Olympic Games, pointed out in her essay that her experience will be of great use in becoming a good or even a great trainer. Luik is currently studying to be a trainer.

“Very few people in the world can be Olympic athletes, and I would love to pass on this experience to children, teenagers and adults practicing sport as a hobby or aspiring to become professional athletes. As an Olympic athlete, I hope I will be able to better motivate children to take up running because I believe that it is people who inspire you to try, exercise, train, believe and strive for a healthier and more active self are good role models,” wrote Luik, who is a student at the Tallinn University.

Katriin Kersa, a certified level 5 swimming trainer, would also like to pass on the experience accumulated during her athletic career and ‘infect’ next generations with the sport bug.

“Working as a trainer is not like a usual job where you clock in and clock out; it is more of a lifestyle which does not depend on the day of the week or the time. You need to keep doing it all the time to develop. As a trainer, I am a teacher, cook, driver, psychologist, and even best friend when they need me. You cannot do this job without investing your soul in it,” Kersa, a student at the University of Tartu, noted.

Anette Traks, a certified level 5 wrestling trainer who studies at the University of Tartu, wrote that wrestling was magical for anyone. This summer, she and her trainer Jarek Läti founded a new wrestling club, Lurich, in Tartu.

“I would like to be an innovator for the future. Wresting as a sport s not exactly popular with girls. I like training boys a lot, but one of my big dreams is to promote wrestling among the other sex so that a motivated and enthusiastic girls’ wrestling group could emerge. First steps in this direction have been take, and more and more girls are joining the classes. There are no sports for men or women only; there is sport for everyone, in which anyone can be themselves. What matters the most is one’s love of sport,” Traks wrote.

The 3600-euro scholarships for future trainers were awarded to the following:

  • Alvar Johannes Alev, University of Tartu, cross-country skiing
  • Annabel Huik, University of Tartu, volleyball
  • Airike Kapp, Tallinn University, athletics
  • Anette Kasemets, University of Tartu, cross-country skiing
  • Karleen Kersa, Tallinn University, swimming
  • Katriin Kersa, University of Tartu, swimming
  • Kristiina Kresmer, University of Tartu, cross-country skiing
  • Helger Kuusik, University of Tartu, football
  • Marcus Lauri, Tallinn University, personal trainer
  • Liina Luik, Tallinn University, athletics
  • Ranno Maasikmets, Tallinn University, snowboarding
  • Erki Mitman, Tallinn University, athletics
  • Kirsti Mäesepp, Tallinn University, swimming
  • Kirke Pollisinski, University of Tartu, indoor hockey
  • Emily Raudkepp, University of Tartu, orienteering
  • Margaret Rodchenkova, Tallinn University, rhythmic gymnastics
  • Henry Räppo, University of Tartu, triathlon
  • Kätri-Avelin Säärits, University of Tartu, wrestling
  • Ott Tootsi, Tallinn University, hockey
  • Anette Traks, University of Tartu, wrestling

Th aim of the scholarship for future trainers is to provide young people with more favourable conditions for the acquisition of additional knowledge, skills, and experience in their preparation for becoming trainers. Students who study at least in the second year of a bachelor’s curriculum which has been accredited and allows them to apply for a trainer’s qualification at a state-funded of private university in Estonia or abroad could apply for the scholarship.

It is important that the scholarship holders plan to implement the knowledge and skills they acquire in their work as trainers. Hold a valid certified trainer qualification or having applied for one as well as the relevant sport federation providing its opinion about the (future) trainer was an advantage.