Diagana's indoor track is housed within the Centre Départemental de Formation et d'Animation Sportives du Val d'Oise (CDFAS), located in Eaubonne, France.
Since its creation, this sports hub has been considered a center of excellence for sports, a facility entirely dedicated to the pursuit of maximum athletic performance, so much so that it is part of the Parcours d'Excellence Sportive established by the French Ministry of Sport.
And to maintain this facility at the highest level, in the summer of 2018, 700 thousand euros were allocated, intended to renovate the athletic track and the stands.
Thanks to this investment, it was possible to proceed with the replacement of the previous MONDO sports surface, Sportflex Super X Performance, with more than 12 years of use, with a new athletics track with SPORTFLEX SUPER X K39 surface.
The CDFAS athletics facility, inaugurated on October 23, 2018, remained, thus, extremely performing: a 200 m ring and elevated curves, certified World Athletics: a certainty so that the facility will be a training venue for the international Olympic teams that will participate in the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
"The French department of Val D'Oise has always wanted to entrust CDFAS with the social mission of promoting the development of sports practice. It is therefore in this spirit that, from the very first years of its creation, the center has been able to welcome the clubs, committees and associations of the territory, as well as develop a range of services in line with the requests of the national Federations, in particular to host their centers of excellence and/or the French youth teams" - ARNAUD ZUMAGLIA, General Manager of the CDFAS in Eaubonne.
The CDFAS indoor athletics track is located inside the athletics hall and occupies an area of 3,000 m2. Dedicated to former world champion and sports icon Stéphane Diagana, it hosts the daily training sessions of the LIFA Pole Espoir Athlétisme athletics team, 46 athletes training daily on this surface:. 23 girls and 23 boys divided into 7 groups, covering the different sports disciplines (speed, hedges, long jump, pole vault, hammer throw, march and multiple events).
The facility is operational 41 weeks a year to ensure that the athletes can train constantly; in total there are 15 hours of training per week, so almost 600 hours total per year for each athlete, as told by Olivier Marchand, sports technical consultant and director of the center of sporting excellence in Eaubonne and head of the speed and steeplechase group.
Intensive training on an extremely high-performance athletics track like SPORTFLEX SUPER X K39 allows the athletes involved to achieve extremely satisfying results, without fatigue or overload injuries:
“It is difficult to distinguish the impact of the surface on frequency or the absence of injury. However, what I can say is that the track, while meeting the performance criteria, is in no way a source of additional injury. (Regarding Achilles tendinopathy, ed.) we do not detect trauma of this type in our groups, regardless of the disciplines practiced. MONDO athletic tracks do not generate this type of trauma. A well-trained athlete, such as those who train at our facilities, does not suffer from training almost exclusively on a Mondo track. These tracks do not cause trauma, even though they are very high performance. They possess all the necessary qualities for carrying out sports activities such as those we practice here.” Olivier Marchand confirms.
The athletics track at the Diagana Stadium is the most widely used indoor track for athletics competitions in France. The only World Athletics certified track to be open to the public in the Ile de France.
With such a track record, a surface capable of meeting the performance demands of the world's best athletes and a facility equipped with the most advanced rehabilitation equipment, the Stadium could only be chosen as one of the training poles of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
And it was the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team that won this stunning venue as its headquarters.
"We visited the Olympic and Paralympic Preparation Center in Colorado Springs in January 2020. We met with their teams on site and were able to delve into their working methods in detail, which allowed us to achieve their high quality standards. We are then sensitizing our teams, training them and creating exchanges with "experts" in each of the areas of activity in order to obtain the appropriate collective and individual expertise at the appropriate time.Several U.S. federations will be coming to CDFAS before 2024 for trainings, depending on international competitions. This will also be an opportunity for us to define the needs of each individual athlete in order to offer the most appropriate service in July, August and September 2024." - recounts Arnaud Zamaglia, General Manager of CDFAS in Eaubonne.
And in preparation for these important appointments, the CDFAS is planning a further renovation, which will also allow it to renew the outdoor track, currently a surface made with a cast system, replacing it with a prefabricated MONDO surface: "The current outdoor track has definitely reached the end of its life. Given the technical needs of our users, and given the arrival of the American team, it seemed appropriate to adapt our facilities to international technical criteria to allow athletes to train in conditions similar to those of competition. It is with this in mind that we plan the renovation of each of our spaces." Zamaglia concludes.
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