Coach Calli O’Brien

Program: Athlete Development

NCCP Certifications:

NCCP Level 1 – Sport Coach

Calli comes to the Calgary Spartans as an Athlete Development Coach after leading the junior Distance and junior Cross-Country program at the St. Albert Mustangs Track and Field Club in Northern Alberta. She previously led the Provincial Junior Development Program for Triathlon Alberta.  

Calli grew up in Colorado Springs, CO and attended high school with many future Olympians who lived at the Olympic Training Centre located there. The focus in high school was on how to incorporate many different sports throughout the day in a natural and playful way. A common after school activity would be to race her bike to the OTC compound, wait for aspiring cyclists to exit, then chase them all the way to a local rock climbing hangout, where the group would go rock climbing for an hour or two before heading home for supper. She also threw discus and shot put (badly) for the high school track and field team.

Calli’s love of running and sport/athlete development was not fully realized until her own kids started competing in their respective sports: her daughter was a swimmer and triathlete, while her son was a nationally-ranked rock climber. Her emphasis in distance training for younger athletes is to build up their aerobic capacities, body strength, and mental toughness so they can excel in whatever sport they decide to specialize in later on, whether it’s track, cross-country or something completely different. She focuses also on play, meaningful social interactions and allowing each child to develop at his or her own pace.

Calli is an NCCP-trained Level 1 Triathlon Coach, Level 1 Sport Coach in Athletics, and has her Level 1 in Cycling as well. She has completed all of the NCCP Multi-Sport modules in both the Level 2 (Introduction to Competition) and Level 3 (Competition Development) contexts. Outside of the NCCP framework, Calli is a Level 1 CrossFit Trainer.

Off the track, Calli works as a Tax Accountant, specializing in cross-border and international taxation. She enjoys backcountry hiking and camping, rock climbing, trail running, and CrossFit. She also continues to support the growing sport of rock climbing by volunteering as a competition judge with the Alberta Climbing Association. 

Favourite quote: “Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.” – Jerry Rice, San Francisco 49’ers Wide Receiver from 1985-2005.

Click here for Practice Schedule

Any changes to posted schedules will be communicated by Coach Calli to all group members.


Please contact our Registrar from the Contact webpage.  Our Registrar will be pleased to welcome you to the Calgary Spartans, help you find the right coach and program, advise you on that to bring to the track and answer any questions you may have.