We had our first really fabulous day of the year in terms of weather this Saturday so it was great to get outside and enjoy the sun. The session started with some warm games including a gentle jog around the playground, some games of What's the Time Mr Wolf? and finally some parachute games. As you can see in the photos below it is a colourful and fun activity and the kids love it.
Once the warm ups were complete it was in to our main sport of the day which was Golf, or more specifically putting. The coaches laid out markers as Tees, cones to show alleys in which to put through with a hoop at the end of each that acted as the hole / target. The kids loved it as it was a test of not just hitting the ball in the right direction but also getting the pace of the ball correct. Hit it too hard and it would go flying past, not enough and it would not reach or bounce back off the rim of the hoop. Like any game of golf there was frustration and joy in equal measure.
After a short drinks break it was back to the putting and some games that the coaches had come up with. Firstly a number of cones were scattered around the playground and the kids had to collect as many as possible by hitting them when putting. Alexander won that game by collecting 9 cones. Then the game was switched to using the numbered yellow cones and the kids worked in pairs. The highest score won so hitting a cone with a higher value on it was the key. This game was won by the partnership of Daisy and Phoebe.
We finished off the session back in the hall with some games of Boccia. The group split in to the red and blue team with each aiming to get as many of their coloured balls in to the hoop of the same colour.
Our star of the week award winner this week was Daisy for her excellent work in the Golf and the Boccia. A very well done Daisy (pictured to the left with Ollie)
Next Saturday is the last of the spring term so dont miss out, especially as there may be a visit from the Easter Bunny!
See you there!
With the weather slowly improving we managed to get outside on to the playground for a session of football this week. It wasn't the warmest of days but with all the running around it was good enough to get out in to the fresh air. The session started with some warm up drills, running around on the playground. It was then out with the footballs for some skills practice starting with dribbling the ball.
As always, as the session progressed the more complex the drills became. So after some basic dribbling of a football around the playground we moved on to a traffic lights game. Similar to when we play the game for other sports when the leader held up a red marker it meant stay still with the ball. A yellow marker meant move the ball from side to side while standing on the spot. A green marker meant go and to dribble the ball around the playground. The last to react to the change in colour each time is out.
The next progression involved using cones to move and dribble the ball around them. Then passing the ball was introduced so some moving the balls around and between cones before passing to a team mate who was waiting for the ball to take their turn.
Alan and the coaches then laid out a course in the shape of a figure of eight and the kids had to dribble the balls between the cones as they went around the course, trying to not go outside the cones along the path.
The last skill left to practice was shooting and so the kids did that by firstly dribbling around the cones and then shooting at the goal. Sometimes it would be an empty goal and so it was just about the accuracy of shooting between the posts. At other times we had Callum, our resident goalkeeper, between the sticks adding an extra challenge to the shooting practice.
The second shooting drill was called "Rapid Fire Shooting". This involved 3 balls placed on coloured spots and a cone which was the starting position. Each competitor had to run from the cone to the first ball and shoot at the goal, then they had to race back around the cone and to the second ball, shoot and back around the cone once more before shooting with the ginal ball. We had three sets of balls arranged at the same time so three kids could go at the same time. It was fast and mixed speed with accuracy in shooting.
After the main break, to recuperate with a drink, snack and small talk, we rounded off the session with a small sided match (about 6-a-side). Putting to good use all the skills practiced throughout the session and making full use of the whole playground it was a great way to end the week.
Our Head Coach Alan Prentice attended Loughton Town Council's AGM on the 13th where he picked up a certificate for Financial Assistance for this coming financial year as the council have kindly awarded the Sportability Club £600 towards our running costs.. Alan can be seen at the back of the photo below with the certificate, along with all the other groups that were awarded grants
This week was the turn of basketball as the main sport to be played, which is always a favourite with the kids.
We started with a warm up as usual and then the basketball started with practising some basic skills so first up was bouncing a ball with one hand then switching to use the other hand once instructed. This soon moved on to bouncing between hands, so using alternate hands each bounce. Lastly the coaches asked them to control the ball whilst bouncing it as high as possible, then as low as possible. Using these skills they then played a Traffic Light game led by Ollie but ably assisted by Liam. When the red cone was held up that meant stand still on the spot holding your ball. Yellow was bouncing the ball on the spot and green meant move around the hall bouncing the ball. The last to do the instruction at each "switch" would be out. After all that activity it was then time for a quick drinks break.
After the drinks break the practice continued with a Slalom course to navigate around a layout of cones. From there the coaches then incorporated moving the ball around the body during the slalom run. There then followed some shooting practice. With two nets, one at either end of the hall, it was easy to set up a circuit so the kids queued to take a shot at one end and once they had their shot they passed the ball to the next shooter and then went to join the line for shooting at the other end of the hall (and so on).
After the main break for drinks and snacks we finished off the session with some 1 vs 1 games before playing a full team game. The one vs one games consisted of the kids starting under a net. On the whistle they then ran to the other end of the hall where the ball would be thrown in by a coach and then it was first to come back down the hall and score a basket. Even if you gained control of the ball initially once you had a shot the ball was back in play if you missed so the other player would likely to be waiting to grab the ball and have a shot themselves.
By this stage of the session the younger ones were screaming for some time to play in the ball pool so Ollie and Teagan took some of them down for the last half hour or so.
At the end of the session the coaches conferred and awarded the star of the week to Charlotte. Basketball is her favourite sport and she always excels when we play it. Well done to Charlotte!
I unfortunately wont be there this Saturday as I will be in Brussels for the day - if I get the chance I will sort out Brexit while I am there too! Enjoy the session which will be based around football - weather permitting. Although a very popular sport it is not one we play a lot of so come along and join in.
It was great to be back after half term and with the weather feeling more like spring than winter we had our first session of tennis of the year.
The day started, as always, with a warm up led by Ray and Ollie - this involved a game of What's the time Mr Wolf and another tag game.
Then it was out with the tennis rackets and balls and first up each child had to practice balancing the ball on the racket as they moved around the hall. This then progressed to bouncing the ball on the racket as they moved. Lastly they then switched to hitting the ball downwards so bouncing the ball between racket and floor as they moved
we then went on to play a traffic lights game led by Ollie. When Ollie held the red cone aloft it meant stand still and balance your ball on your racket. Yellow cone meant bounce the ball on the racket whilst standing still but a green cone meant go and that meant bouncing the ball whilst on the move around the hall.
Next up was a Slalom course. Ray and the team laid out lanes up the length of the hall. They kids then had to go along the course going around the cones. To start with it was just balancing the ball as they moved but then it got trickier as they were then asked to bounce the ball on the racket whilst on the move
After a drinks break the fun continued with a game called "Build a Burger". This is where small groups work together to balance tennis balls between rackets as they move up and down the hall. As they complete a lap another person joins the group and adds another layer to the burger. So what starts as a tennis ball between two rackets then has another ball added on top with another racket holding that in place. As the layers build up it becomes harder to keep the whole stack stable and soon the whole lot can fall apart if you are not careful
The tennis games concluded with some general games across the nets and then a game of King of the Court. Ollie led the game throwing the ball over the net to each player in turn. They had to hit the ball back over the net and get it to bounce inside the court without getting caught out. Get caught or fail to get the ball back over and in to the court then you were out and you joined Ollie in trying to catch the others out. The last player remaining was the King, or Queen, of the court. This is a great game as it gets progressively harder to survive as the number of fielders grow throughout the game as more people are out.
After a final break most of the younger kids went to the ball pool whilst the remainder played some Benchball, as you can see in the photos below.
Epping Forest Sportability Club is a multi-sports club for young people with mild to moderate physical and learning difficulties.