Hailing from Caracas, Venezuela, Homero Pardiâ€™s affiliation with Championâ€™s Edge dates back to 2003 where he has fulfilled roles as both a Head Coach and Head Director of Camps. Athletes are quick to recognize him in his standard issued Oakleyâ€™s, a sun tan that can only be achieved through avoiding contact with sunscreen and his trademarked, bowling pin-shaped calves.
Pardi currently serves as an assistant coach at Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ. His cache of collegiate coaching experience includes Princeton University (2008-2011), Georgetown University (2003-2007) and Kent St. University (2002-2003). Pardi has also spent time as an assistant coach with the Venezuelan National Team (2001-2002), as well as director of the Venezuelan Indoor/Outdoor Hockey League (2001-2003).
As member of several Venezuelan indoor & outdoor national teams, Pardiâ€™s international playing career from 1996-2004 includes participation in the Jr. Pan Am Championships (2), the Central American & Caribbean Games and the Pan-America Cup.
When heâ€™s not busy coaching summer camps and college hockey in the fall, Pardi dedicates his winter and spring months coaching several high school indoor teams with Mystx Field Hockey Club (PA).
Vitals- in his own words.
Stick: TK Platinum 36.5 chamois grip double tapped
Hockey Shoes: Adidas
International Side: Gotta stick with my South American peeps… Argentina
Will Ferrell movie: Too many to just pick one favorite… but I guess I’ll go with Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. “If you ain’t first, you’re last!”
Q: Indoor season is in full swing these daysâ€¦ How’s the level of play? What do you see as something in general that all high school athletes should be focused on improving?
The level of play is decent and the effort is there. I just wish clubs would put the same effort into outdoor hockey in the spring as they do for indoor hockey in the winter. The execution of basic skills (passing and receiving) remains a constant area of focus; once these skills are improved, athletes will be able to play a more creative style, i.e. recognize passing lanes and play a faster more competitive and enjoyable game.
Q: You’ve coached over 700 camps in the US in the past 10 years (or so it seems). What are some of the things you see as difference-makers in determining a good camp from a bad one?
Wow, 700 camps? 10 years? I guess I just realized I’m getting old!
The main difference is the coaching staff. Coaches should be knowledgeable and fun at the same time. This balance is important because if the coach is “too much fun” the athlete will not learn as much; on the other hand, if the coach is too “serious” the athlete most likely will not enjoy her camp experience as much.
Another important aspect of differentiating a good camp from a bad one is the facility. An Astroturf or Field-Turf surface plays a big role in the overall progression of a camp. The camp coach will be able to demonstrate, teach, execute and evaluate proper skills; the athlete can later take these improved skills and apply them on any surface without sacrificing technique. Running a camp on a proper surface will also make it easier to help the athlete to get rid of bad habits acquired from learning incorrect skills or playing on substandard grass fields.
I would also like to mention field space. I have seen camps that pack a field with over 100 athletes in a given session. This creates a problem when trying to work on things like outletting, small games to goal, hitting, flicking, etc. A well run camp will allocate the right number of players in one session (max 75). I can proudly say that over my time as a camp coach at Champion’s Edge we have worked diligently in taking care of these details (and more) to ensure the best learning experience for our athletes.