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Harry Marra: Ashton Eaton’s Gold Medal Decathlon Coach

Even Usain Bolt has acknowledged that Ashton Eaton is currently the World’s Greatest Athlete





 

We’re honored to have Eaton’s coach, Harry Marra on the show. Marra is one of the leading lights of ultra-elite track and field coaching. He’s been instrumental for over four decades in helping some of the world’s best decathletes become world beaters.

The show is hosted by sports psychologist Glenn Whitney.

Harry Marra touched Decathlon gold the first time way back in 1996 in Atlanta, with Dan O’Brien. He has coached throughout every Olympic Games cycle since then, and helped seven different decathletes score over 8,000 points.


Eaton currently holds the World Record for highest score in the Decathlon, at 9,039 points, set at the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Harry touched decathlon gold the first time way back in 1996 in Atlanta, with Dan O’Brien. He has coached throughout every Olympic Games cycle since Atlanta and has helped seven different decathletes score over 8,000 points.

Harry is based at University of Oregon at Eugene. At present he is working simultaneously with Eaton and top Canadian decathlete Brianne Theisen. Not coincidentally Eaton and Theisen are enaged to each other.

Key topics
– The coach and athlete have to become one in their communication skills
– Ashton Eaton’s Decathlon amounts to only 18 verbal “cues” i.e. “perpendicular” for the long jump
– Thorough preparation makes the Olympics feel like a simple dual meet
– A few (Oregon) athletes are so intense sometimes you have to tell them to lighten up, have some fun
– Eaton and other top Oregon athletes mean business; no messing around
– Top goal is to develop trust. You achieve it by being consistent with your athletes
– Behind most successful coaches is a supportive spouse