Applications are now open for the 2019 Mentorship Programme for coaches of able-bodied and Para athletes who work as such on a full-time basis, as well as for International Referees in their first two years, or National Referees within National Associations of Category 2 or 3; it is a major opportunity to learn from renowned experts who have worked at the very highest level of their field.

Four coaches in total, with one being specific to PTT (Para Table Tennis), and one official will be selected as mentees from the applications. The mentorship program will be based on long-term acquisition and application of knowledge and skills. It focuses on raising awareness and promoting responsibility.

The process will be mentee-centred. The mentor and mentee will be working on a 1 to 1 basis, focused on the needs of the specific person.

The agenda will be worked out between the parties according to the requirements of the individuals. After the initial contact has been established, mentor and mentee will be able to meet on Skype to discuss the main topic of the mentee’s assignment. They will also have the opportunity to draft an agenda focused on achieving the mentee’s aims in terms of their career and personal development, which will comprise a number of scheduled meetings, followed by a week of direct face-to-face interaction, during which the mentor and mentee will work closely together.

For the face to face element, the mentee will travel to the mentor’s place of work (in the case of coaches at the mentor’s base, in the case of officials at a main competition) to carry out assigned tasks and duties under close supervision of the mentor. The aim is to unlock the person´s potential, to maximize their own performance, helping them to learn rather than teaching them directly. The programme concludes with the completion of the assignment by the mentee, which will be published on

In past years, the mentors were authorities like Eva Jeler, Dirk Wagner, Peter Karlsson and Gorazd Vecko in addition to a team of coaching experts at the Chinese Table Tennis College, co-ordinated by Liu Ruizhi.

A maximum total of US$ 1,500 is available to cover airfare and hospitality; mentees are expected to stay five days at the designated mentor centre or, in the case of the officials, at the designated event.

To apply, please see: ITTF Mentorship Programme for Coaches

Deadline for applications: April 22, 2019