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Dad, head coach of University of Manitoba Bisons women's volleyball team and the Junior Bison Gold female 14-and-under club team



Ken Bentley, in his 28th year as the Bisons head coach, got a special Father's Day gift last week -- Ken was named Volleyball Manitoba's elite coach of the year and his daughter, Katreena, the setter on the Junior Bisons Gold club team he coaches, was named the 14U girls' player of the year.

The Bentleys and the Bisons Gold won gold and the 14U Division I title last month at 2014 Volleyball Canada National Championships in Abbottsford, B.C.

"I thought three things about our Junior Bisons team. I'm super-excited that we won and proud of the way we played. No. 2, thank God I'm finished because I've been coaching since the middle of last August, and three, I'm so relieved that I actually won something with my own kid!" Bentley said, laughing. He said Katreena, 13, and his stepdaughter, Julia Arnold, were both underage members of the team. "You don't get moments like that very often, or years like this, really."

In March, Bentley's U of M Bisons won the CIS title, the sixth national crown of his university coaching career. His overall Bisons university coaching record is 986-355 with a 73.53 winning percentage.

Bentley, who calculated he has hit over one million volleyballs during his coaching career, began to focus on his own fitness about three years ago and lost 35 pounds that he has kept off. He attributes his longevity and healthy shoulder/elbow joints to his work with personal trainer Terry Hadlow at the Optimal Training Academy. He tries to work out four times per week, especially through the winter when his university and club teams have him coaching every night for about three months. Maintaining his fitness has helped in his summer hobby of racing motocross bikes.




We have a long circuit at the Optimal Training Academy that we do every Friday, and I really enjoy the camaraderie of a group of people pushing themselves through this circuit. It can be hell, though, when it is 60 minutes long and we are going 35 seconds on and 25 seconds off, and we stay for two stations in a row or go two forward and one back. The banter quickly dissipates at about the halfway mark and it becomes survival.




KEN: I never listen to music when I train. I enjoy music when I am working on my motocross bikes though: the Stones, Roxy Music, John Cougar, a little Eminem to spice things up!

KATREENA: Sing by Ed Sheeran and Dare by Shakira




I think the biggest thing is to forgive yourself if you fall off your routine. Life gets in the way when you are making plans to do other things, especially when you get older and your life gets crowded. Just get back to it and before long you feel a million times better in every way. You need to take the long view. Keep fighting the good fight is the biggest thing to me. Coach Terry just told me that I am on comeback No. 205!




A smoothie is always a great choice when pressed for time. Bananas, Greek yogurt, strawberries, a splash of protein powder.




KEN: Too many! If I had to choose, it would be cherry pie. My grandma used to make the best cherry pie and I still love it although I have yet to find a replacement close to what she used to make, but I am still looking.

KATREENA: White chocolate & cheesecake

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 21, 2014 D16

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