In the mid-1980’s a group of enthusiasts came together in order to re-establish a foundation for racquetball instruction. The organization was called PARI (Professional Association of Racquetball Instructors). Previous instructor groups came and left as short-term investments. The group was spearheaded by Connie Martin, who provided a huge resource of programming material to compliment the instruction. She maintained her presence along with a core group of clinicians for a few years. She was replaced by Wayne Barrows and then by Michelle Gould.Â Michelle built on the organization and changed its name to AmPRO (American Professional Racquetball Organization). In 1997 Gary Mazaroff became the director of AmPRO. The IPRO (International) brand was added to promote a world-wide endeavor. The agenda was changed to favor a hands on approach to learning and training as opposed to a higher concentration of theory. The programming portion was consolidated into a different text and was to have been available for a separate license.
USA Racquetball (At that time USRA) maintained control of the organization from the outset, under the direction of Dr. James Hiser. The thrust was the offering of instructional certification courses throughout the United States with the assistance of a group of clinicians. It certified existing teachers and teaching candidates with three levels–basic instructor, advanced, and professional. A small group of the professionals were selected to be the clinicians.
AmPRO-IPRO continues to train and re-educate instructors, coaches, and officials in the field. All professionals in the field require programming skills as well. Working together with venues must be a win-win venture to make racquetball and other court/racquet sports co-exist with other income driving disciplines and activities. In 2003 USRA decided to relinquish the control of AmPRO. The current administration became the CEO while still maintaining a relationship via membership. All current AmPRO personnel must have been a competitive license holder under USRA. This relationship ended in 2009, when the US national governing body for racquetball (having now become USAR) opted to enter the instructional playing field once again, creating another option for consumers. Currently there are two licensures available for racquetball instructors in the United States. AmPRO-IPRO maintains a select faculty working with the current membership base (Instructors, Coaches, Officials) and has representation in close to thirty countries.
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