Michel Assouline with David Botana at 2019 Tryon CPEDI3* and National Championship. Photo Courtesy of Lindsay Y. McCall.
Colorado Springs, Colorado – February 23, 2021 – United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee has named Para Dressage Chef d’Equipe Michel Assouline as 2020 Paralympic Coach of the Year. Michel Assouline started with the U.S. Para-Equestrian Dressage program in May 2017. His innovation and persistent drive to grow the sport and expand the program has impacted the whole Para Dressage community. Through the pandemic, Assouline has helped several athletes work through emotional pressures and reposition athletes’ training schedules by utilizing technology and focusing on enhanced communication. His efforts include online judging, direct coaching through PIXIO, group meetings, and one-on-one meetings, which proved effective when athletes showed performance improvement at the 2020 Adequan®/USEF Para Dressage National Championships October 23-25. In three years, Michael has built a Para-Equestrian Dressage Coach Certificate Program that was rolled out across the country during the latter part of 2019 and early 2020 that received high participation with 32 coaches going through the program. In March 2020, the U.S. Para Dressage Team ranked No. 1 in the world having achieved scores that would have tracked Team USA to be on the podium at Tokyo 2020. At the heart of Assouline’s success is his ability to work with each athlete and build a specialized program around them to improve their development and performance, which can be seen in Roxanne Trunnell, who is currently ranked No. 1 in the world in her grade and overall across all five grades.
For more information, please visit www.USPEA.org.