VICTORIA—Triathlon Canada has ramped up its investment in strengthening the paratriathlete development pathway by welcoming Lisa Mensink as the organization’s first ever paratriathlon pathway coach.
Mensink began her coaching career as an assistant coach at the Kronos Triathlon Club in 2009 before taking on the head coach position five years later. In 2015, she transitioned to the performance coach role at the Calgary-based club. Mensink will provide a boost of support while working with head coach, Carolyn Murray, towards achieving Triathlon Canada’s goals of deepening its pool of high-performance paratriathletes and helping them reach their performance goals.
“Lisa is going to play a critical role in leading the work with our provincial partners to introduce more athletes with a disability to our three-discipline sport, while also leading their development through the performance pathway,” said Phil Dunne, high-performance director, Triathlon Canada.
“Triathlon Canada has developed a medal-winning para program that has enjoyed steady success over the last decade. We want to ensure this tradition of excellence continues well beyond the 2024 Paralympic Summer Games. Adding additional coaching support to our high-performance programs earlier in the pathway provides an opportunity for support and collaboration with our clubs, provincial partners, and enhances the ability to nurture the talents of the next generation of athletes while preparing them for the next steps in their continued progression from development to the elite level.”
Under Dunne’s leadership, Mensink will support the identification and transition of all newly identified paratriathletes in the pathway to LA 2028. The new position will lead all athlete talent identification initiatives and provide coaching support to new athletes entering the performance pathway, allowing Carolyn Murray to focus on Triathlon Canada’s elite paratriathletes in the lead up to Paris 2024.
“I’m excited to take on this new role within Triathlon Canada to further develop the Para performance pathway while, most importantly, supporting new up and coming paratriathletes navigate this pathway and achieve their goals,” said Mensink.
A former professional triathlete who raced World Triathlon Olympic distance events with the Dutch National Team (2007-2015) and Canadian National Development Team (2006), Mensink lined up against Carolyn Murray at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
She has gained extensive experience since transitioning to the coaching ranks, working with development athletes in Alberta. Using her experiences, both athletically and through continued education and mentorship, Mensink has been on a mission to make an immediate and long-lasting contribution to the athletes’ success and to further the development of para and non-para triathlon in Canada.
Mensink has played a leading role developing club and provincial training programs to coaching at elite competitions to attending multi-sport Games. She has been Team Alberta’s manager for triathlon at the 2017 Canada Summer Games, as well as the head triathlon coach at the 2019 Western Canada Summer Games, and most recently, the 2022 Canada Summer Games.
Mensink is an NCCP Certified Competition Development Certified Coach, an NCCP Certified Swimming Fundamentals Coach, and a Coach Mentor/Evaluator.
Triathlon Canada is the governing body of the sport in the country. Triathlon Canada’s more than 22,000 members include athletes, coaches, and officials from the grassroots to elite levels. With the support of its valued corporate partners – 94 FORWARD, Training Peaks, Subaru Canada, Z3R0D, Tribe Solutions, Champion System Canada, BOCO Gear Canada, ZiZU Optics, Outway Performance Socks, SCICON, SportsShare and FulGaz – along with the City of Victoria, Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee, Canadian Paralympic Committee, and Own the Podium, Triathlon Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic and World Champions in all race disciplines. For more information on Triathlon Canada, please visit us at www.triathloncanada.com.