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Mini ‘Commonwealth Games’ is a hit with schoolkids

Posted: 13 May 2022

Sports students at West Nottinghamshire College have given Mansfield schoolchildren an action-packed day to show off their athletic talents.

Thanks to the national School Games initiative, a government-led programme which delivers competitive school sport to young people across the UK, more than 50 Year 5 and year 6 pupils participated in a mini Commonwealth Games, to celebrate and reflect the profile of the forthcoming Games taking place in Birmingham this year from 28 July to 8 August.

Led by School Games organiser for Mansfield, Nicky Biggs and West Nottinghamshire College’s sports curriculum, the event, held on Wednesday 11 May, challenged the youngsters’ athletic abilities in a hurdle relay, obstacle relay, a speed bounce, long jump, triple jump, vertical jump, soft javelin and chest pushes with a basketball.

Boys and girls from Oaktree Primary, Church Vale Primary, Peafield Lane Academy and Abbey Primary schools were coached through the afternoon’s events by students on the Level 2 Community Sports Leader and Advanced Extended Certificate in Sport and Exercise Science programmes.

Nicky Biggs said: “This is all about inspiring the next generation to have fun with sports. During the pandemic schools were hit really hard, and children missed out on school sports and games and lost the social connections and confidence that comes with physical activity.

“Today is great as they can come out, have fun and represent their school and it’s not all about them needing to be the best athletes. In fact, School Games really prides itself on including children who aren’t top performers and the Commonwealth Games is a great platform to work from in terms of the range of sport activities.

“It’s wonderful to see the college students refining their coaching and training talents as school games rely on up-and-coming new sporting leaders. Everyone has had the chance to overcome their fears and build up some confidence today.”

Level 2 Community Sports Leader student, Riley Newton-Swinn, 16, said: “It has been great fun in the sports hall. We’ve carefully devised activities to suit the children’s varied abilities and needs.

“Their agility, co-ordination and reflexes have all been thoroughly tested and they seem to have really enjoyed this event and got plenty of exercise.”

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