As Football is the national past time you would have thought we play it quite a lot at Epping Forest Sportability Club but in fact we only play it once or twice a year. But as the sun was out and we dont get to use the Oak View school field that often we took the opportunity to practice and play some football.
We started as always with a warm up with Ray leading the twisting, stretching and jogging before Ollie led a quick game of tag. It was then straight out on to the field to practice football. Alan had laid out a square using cones and the kids had to get a ball each and then move around within the square keeping the ball at their feet. First it was using both feet, then left foot only, then right. That led to a traffic light game where Alan called out Red, Amber of Green - red meant stop with the foot on the ball, green for go to move around with the ball at your feet and amber was to pass between your feet quickly.
The last skill game in the square was a good one - the aim being to be the last one left in. The object is to control and protect your own ball while kicking other people's balls outside of the square. If your ball leaves the square then you are out until the next game. It was a great game not only for practicing ball control and movement but also had a bit of strategy in it, Do you leave your ball briefly while you try and kick an opponents ball out or do you try and protect your ball whilst getting near an opponent. Tom one the first game using the first method but got caught out in the second game as when he left his ball to go after an opponent someone else kicked it out. I think it was Kerrie that ended up winning the second game.
After the games in the square were over the cones were re-arranged in to a slalom formation and the group split in to three teams. The members would take it in turns to go up and down the course around the cones, with the ball, before passing to the next person waiting in line.
We then moved on to some games splitting the groups in to two teams - reds and yellows. With Nick and Tom both in the Red team there was certainly a lot of energy and commitment. Coach Alan was on the opposing Yellow team and thanks to his silky skills they were comfortably in the lead by half time. We had a well earned rest going back inside for a drink and snack.
In the second half the tide turned somewhat and between Callum, Nick and Tom the reds stormed back in to the game. With a last ditch goal they rescued an honourable draw.
At the end of the session the coaches awarded the star of the week award to Tom for not only partaking very well throughout the session but for also making sure his team mates all joined in and had a go. Tom's sportsmanship is top notch! Unfortunately, by the time we got back inside and completed the certificate Tom had left already so we dont have a photo of him with his award, and he will have to collect it next Saturday,
Join us again then when I think a game of Cricket is on the agenda - weather permitting of course!
Epping Forest Sportability Club is a multi-sports club for young people with mild to moderate physical and learning difficulties.