Elaine Ward has tirelessly given to the sport of race walking for almost two decades running both the North American Racewalking Foundation (NARF) and North American Racewalking Institute (NARI).
Since 1986, the North American Racewalking Foundation (NARF) has been promoting race walking in many ways. The Foundation first acted as a referral service for people seeking contacts to learn race walking or to connect with other race walkers. Many magazines and newspapers used the Foundation as an information source and by 1990, NARF was receiving an average of 4,000 calls, emails, letters or faxes a year. The Foundation offers video and telephone coaching, judging information and supplies, as well as information on how to establish clubs, put on races and conduct workouts for different levels of walkers.
Recognizing a need for instructional materials, the Foundation produced numerous videos and books and they are available for sale from the Foundation along with titles from other publishers. Producing a number of newsletters over the years, the Foundation now publishes a Quarterly Bulletin for members and donors supporting the Olympic developmental activities of its nonprofit Institute.
In a two year partnership with the USATF National Race Walk Committee, NARF started a regional/national ranking ladder including Canada in 1993. The ranking was done by five-year age groups with specific time qualification standards as well as judging and certification standards. The ranking ladder was discontinued in 2002.
The Foundation’s web site, http://members.aol.com/RWNARF, features calculators for calculating times at different distances at different ages. It also provides an age-grading calculator for those using age grading to assess how they are doing in relationship to the best in their age group, as well as how their times hold up over the years. Icabod’s Racewalk 101 is equally popular.
If you want to contact NARF, you can write or call them at:
North American Racewalking Foundation
1203 S. Orange Grove Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91105-3345
The North American Racewalking Institute (NARI) is the non profit companion to the North American Racewalking Foundation. NARI has been a major contributor to the race walking program at the ARCO Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California, since its inception in 1997. A state-of-the art training facility, the OTC provides a unique resource for both resident and visiting athletes preparing for international competition. Over the years, NARI has also given financial assistance to high school and collegiate race walking programs, put on training and awareness camps, and sponsored several national championships.
Recently, NARI initiated the Al Heppner Scholarship Fund in honor of this talented and loved athlete. Curt Clausen, Vince Peters, Jeff Salvage, Diane Graham-Henry and Elaine Ward form the Scholarship Committee. The purpose of the Fund is to aid aspiring Olympians.
NARI's activities are made possible by the tax deductible donations of individuals, businesses and charitable foundations. The officers and Board of Directors are volunteers so that all donations go directly to Olympic development programs. Race walking has a true friend in Elaine Ward, the Institute's founder and President. We look forward to enjoying her accomplishments for many more years