UB High Performance Centre to Deliver Cutting-edge Sports Development Expertise

UBHPC1The University of Botswana on February 28, 2022 launched a P500 million state-of-the-art High-Performance Centre (HPC). The HPC was officially launched by the Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology, Dr Douglas Letsholathebe. The he first of its kind in Botswana and one of the world’s best, the UBHPC is poised to transform the landscape in human performance from a sports science, health and lifestyle perspective in Africa and even globally.

The UBHPC has been established as regional destination of choice for all-round human and sports performance. Located within a multifunctional University of Botswana Indoor Sports Centre, the Centre is home to some of the world’s leading experts and boasts state-of-the-art equipment.

Having played host to the men’s 4x4m Tokyo 2020 Bronze medalists, the UBHPC also boasts a 3 418-seater Arena, performance laboratories tailored to conduct tests specific to muscular endurance and etrength, power, agility, aerobic as well as anaerobic endurance, speed, acceleration, bio-mechanical analysis and psychomotor.

In addition, the UBHPC offers ancillary consulting service to corporate entities on work-related fitness, rehabilitation, injury prevention, health and wellness activities, and sport event management. Notably, the UBHPC has provided expertise to five national teams since inception as well as more than 120 elite athletes among them Amantle Montsho, Isaac Makwala, Christine Botlogetswe, Nijel Amos and Baboloki Thebe.

Officially launching the Centre, Minister Letsholathebe expressed delight that the University of Botswana was now counted among institutions that offer the best of services to elite athletes and their trainers though cutting-edge technology and expertise.

Dr Letsholathebe observed that over the years, the UBHPC would inspire more downstream activities in the sporting arena and unlock opportunities for the agricultural sector and food industry. Other areas include sports-related marketing, sponsorship, advertising, funding and third-stream incentives poised to make Botswana a sports startup and sustainable gateway in SADC.

UBHPC2“I can imagine the experience gained from this Centre feeding into accident and injury rehabilitation, reshaping our physiotherapy, our high care and our better understanding of healing and restoring processes,” said the Minister.

In her welcome remarks, UB Chancellor, Ms Tebelelo Seretse, said the launch of the UBHPC was testimony to the unique value that the University of Botswana offered to the constantly growing sports sector in Botswana, SADC and the rest of the world.

“This university has been our most reliable source of expertise for forty years now and so it is with great excitement that we watch our alma mater venture into this new role in the sports sectors, which are the biggest entertainment, celebrity and employment creators of all the leisure industries,” said Ms Seretse.

She highlighted that only a university with the strongest commitment to the biosciences and to task-integrated learning would dare to enter into dialogue with the sports world, with its extreme and endlessly evolving hunger for improvement and innovation.

“It gives me great pride to see our National University venturing into this competitive but highly rewarding science and arts discipline,” added Ms Seretse.

The Vice Chancellor, Professor David Norris, also highlighted the difference between a regular gym and a high-performance centre, noting that the UBHPC was a sophisticated facility with modern technology to provide high performance testing to elite athletes. He underscored the need to develop sport in Botswana and said the UBHPC was poised to do just that. Thus, the UBHPC with its interdisciplinary functions, was a one stop shop for a holistic development of elite athletes and other stakeholders.

Association of High-Performance Centres Vice-President for Africa, Dr. Kevin Subban, said the advantages of being a member of the association was that is gives UBHPC access to best practices, expertise and collaborations around the world. Dr MajamaSubban further emphasised the importance of providing a comprehensive environment and knowledgeable staff to run a high-performance centre successfully. He said the UBHPC was another welcome addition to the once Eurocentric association of high performance centres.

Gaborone Central Member of Parliament, Mr Tumisang Healey, observed that the establishment of the UBHPC would bridge the gap between theory and practice to deliver an integrated approach to the development of athletes. In addition, he said UB’s many disciplines would also become integral parts of globally competitive growth strategies once their value was discovered by different sports sectors through the UBHPC.

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