It was a lovely day on Saturday, possibly the last good day of summer, so Alan and the team had the kids out on the playground playing some Tennis for most of the session.
After the usual warm ups it was straight in to the fun and games as the kids paired up. To start with one of each pair would throw the ball for the other to hit back using a tennis racket. After a while the roles would be reversed so that everyone had a turn practising hitting the ball with the racket. Once they were comfortable and in control of the ball when hitting they moved on to both having rackets and passing the ball to each other.
As you can see from the photos it was then time to start passing the ball back over the net. We had two courts with the group split in two, Alan in charge of one court (with assistance from Kody) and Ray on the other. The aim being simply to get the ball back over the net and in to the court.
After a break it was on to our favourite tennis game - King of the Court! This is the game where all the kids line up on one side of the net to take their turn. A leader throws a ball over the net to them and they have to return it back over the net, into the court without the ball being caught. If you succeed it is back to the end of the line to await your next time. If you are less successful then you join the other side trying to catch the ball as it come back over. Last man standing, or woman, is the king, or queen, of the court!
Towards the end of the session, for those who were done with the Tennis we did manage a little game of skittles in the Hall. At the end of the session the coaches decided that Jenny was our star of the week for getting really involved and trying hard. Well done to Jennifer!
Inspired by the gold medal the ladies hockey team won at the Rio Olympics it was time to pick up our hockey sticks once again and brush up our skills. This week saw a great turn out of new and old(er) members alike and Ray got the session underway as usual with a warm up. It was then straight in to some skills practice controlling a tennis ball with the hockey stick.
Once the kids were controlling the ball well it was time to put the practice to the test with some one vs. one games. Each pair had to run from one end of the hall to the other to pick up their hockey stick and then compete for the ball to get it back down the other end to score past Ray in the goal. We saw some good match ups, some great ball control and a few top shots.
After a well deserved break, where we celebrated Theo's 8th birthday, we then split the group in two with one group out on the playground using up their energy playing a game of football. Meanwhile the second group were inside in the hall practising their basketball dribbling and shooting. After a while the two groups switched around so they all got a good go at each sport.
It was great to be back after the long summer break, rested and raring to go. We had a superb session playing some fantastic Paralympic sports. It was not the best of days weather wise so we stayed in the hall. Our main sport was basketball, but without the wheelchairs, and that was followed by some Target Boccia.
Ray led the warm up at the start of the session doing some stretching and a light jog around the hall. It was then on to basketball and we started by practising our ball control and in particular dribbling the ball. We progressed to dribbling around cones and building up speed.
After a short refreshment break we moved on to some shooting practice and then some one vs. one games which combined dribbling the ball and then shooting.
After the one vs. one games we then moved on to some team games with team red against team yellow. Lastly, after a well deserved drinks and snack break, we took things down a notch with a leisurely game of Target Boccia.
Overall it was a good first week back but we were missing some of our regulars (you know who you are) so we hope to see a few more back next Saturday!
Epping Forest Sportability Club is a multi-sports club for young people with mild to moderate physical and learning difficulties.