Dr. Jan Prins, associate professor in the College of Education (COE) Department of Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Science (KRS), served on the United States Wounded Warrior Coaching Staff at the inaugural Invictus Games, held in London on September 10–14, 2014. With the COE since 1978, Prins is the former UH Mānoa Varsity Men’s Swimming Coach and the founder and director of the Aquatic Research Laboratory.
Inspired by the United States Warrior Games, Prince Henry of Wales (known as Prince Harry) worked to bring the event to an international audience. The first annual Invictus Games included more than 400 competitors from 13 nations. Athletes, both current and veteran servicemen, and women, competed in adaptive sports, such as wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, and indoor rowing. The U.S. Team was comprised of 100+ athletes who competed in sixteen different sports.
“I consider it a great honor to coach our Wounded Warriors, especially at this special international event that recognizes the contribution of our armed forces,” Prins said.
After coaching for Sri Lanka in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, Prins founded Swim Hawaiʻi, a swimming instructional program for the community, where he still serves as director. He would go on to coach the United States Team at the 1992 Paralympic Games in Barcelona and the 1994 World Championships in Malta.
Prins’ current research focuses on the biomechanics of the swimming stroke of elite competitive swimmers and children. He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Swimming Research and the author of Applying Science to Coaching from the Swim Coaches Bible, Volume II.
He is regularly invited to speak at conferences worldwide and looks forward to continuing his work with the Special Operations Branch of the Armed Services.