It wasn't that long ago that there weren't any classes or sports
sessions available to young children in Blaenau Gwent.
Until, that is, the local authority decided it was high time
that if you were aged between three and eight years old, then you
should be able to join in the fun!
But the sports development team at Blaenau Gwent didn't want any
old sport sessions. They wanted to offer sessions that would teach
fundamental movement skills (it's what we call physical
Not only did they want children to learn how to run, throw,
catch, jump and skip but they wanted to teach parents the
importance of these skills too.
Victoria Price explains, "We wanted our children
in the area to have a head start. If they were given the basic
skills, taught in a fun way, it would mean that they would venture
to sports clubs with confidence. It would be more likely that they
would enjoy a range of sports and continue playing them."
So Little Life was set up back in January 2012. It teaches young
children all the fundamental movements through mini versions of
sports such as football, tennis, netball and gymnastics.
With a handy investment of £6,500 from Sport Wales and the
support of community clubs in the area such as Tredegar Netball
Club, Ebbw Vale Junior Netball Club and Valleys Gymnastics Academy,
local children are now reaping the rewards.
Parents are even given homework to do. They receive practical
ideas and skills to teach at home so they too can help their
children with physical literacy.
And the results?
- 79% of parents felt their child's confidence had increased
- 79% felt their child's skill level had grown
- 73% had seen an increase in their child's agility, balance and
- Local sports clubs have also noted a huge difference in skill
Victoria adds, "One parent explained that his son
was shy and didn't interact that well with other children. But
being involved in the Little Life sessions has really brought him
out of his shell. He is sociable with the other children and is
more confident. His Dad also said that he has much more energy and
Parents get in on the action at Ebbw Vale mini kickers too! They
are the first sport's centre in the area to let parents have a go!
It took a bit of extra planning and some arm twisting of parents
but the response has been brilliant. It means a greater number of
children can take part in the session as the parents can help teach
the skills - once they've been shown by the coach of course!
If you would like to find out more, contact Victoria Price,
01495 355324, firstname.lastname@example.org
Twitter: @BGInspire Facebook: BG