Friday evening saw www.sensiblesoccer.co.uk and grassroots partner The Football Fun Factory deliver a fantastic event with over 150 parents and children in attendance despite the challenging weather. The event was held at The Adrenaline centre Haslingden in conjunction with the Rossendale schools sport partnership and was aimed at providing an opportunity for nursery and reception children to experience a first taste of sporting activity and fun through football and general agility and co ordination based games. The night also catered for primary school football enthusiasts to meet like minded people, receive coaching from some of the worlds most prominent coaches and experience a once in a lifetime opportunity to be coached by a Premier League and European Champions League winner.
An introduction to sport at this age is of paramount importance and even more so in current times amid the uncertain global health backdrop. Academic and public health research suggests that those introduced to sport at an early age are far more likely to explore and continue, far less likely to develop heart disease, diabetes, suffer with obesity and mental health challenges among other medical issues and in turn are far more likely to progress to higher levels of academic attainment. The evidence suggests these children will also benefit and progress successfully in the workplace and develop good social health as opposed to those children who do not engage in some form of sport or outdoor activity. Other additional skills developed include communication, teamwork, decision making, social confidence, problem solving, anatomical awareness and an inquisitive nature in a practical and interactive environment.
The night was a roaring success with extensive positive feedback from all involved.
“I brought 3 children with me reception and nursery ages and wow their self confidence shot through the roof, after no more than a minute cajoling them into the arena which I must admit looked a whole bundle of fun the minute we opened the door and the bright colours hit their faces they were off. The only issue I now have is they all said can we go again tomorrow LOL” Jay Parker (Parent)
“My son plays in a football team already and has a coach but this event was a real different twist and certainly got the energy pumping, he was wet through at the end of the hour, a great way to spend any Friday night after a week at school, one very happy and hungry boy when we got home” Donna Taylor (Parent)
“Hattie is just starting to play football and is a new reception year pupil at primary school, I loved how the cartoon like and colourful environment helped her engage and start to understand and explore some of the skills to help her play football.” Chloe Pickering (Parent)
Founder and director (FFF) “This is what its all about, look at all those happy faces out there and you can just feel the energy and vibe coming off the sports hall. Football is a game to be enjoyed and loved, its not all about being a professional and we are here to take the sport to the masses and to all and to create smiles. It’s a fun factory after all and that’s the goal for me.”
In my world I can get bogged down in the all encompassing media and demand and quest for high performance. This is what its all about though, I started on my local back street and it became a life obsession for me. However so many of my friends and family also started at the same time and still have an interest and passion to this day. This is what its all about and its difficult now to be able to just go out and play and meet friends compared to what it was like in my day. The reason why my company www.sensiblesoccer.co.uk have partnered with Luke and TFFF is because this idea and culture recreates that initial spark in a modern and safe way. Anything we can do to support schools and grassroots in delivering the facility or possibilities and experiences to young children can only be a good thing.”
Every school in Rossendale had shared this event with their families and to see so many children from each school being active was a very pleasing aspect of the evening. Chris Willan, local Rossendale Headteacher, who is leading the Ready Set Rossendale project “Once again Rossendale is leading the way in creating opportunities for our local children to move, smile and play. It is essential that we continue to deliver events to all of our children in order to inspire more physical movement which in turn develops better health outcomes for all. To have both Mike and Luke supporting this project and taking the time out of their day to encourage is wonderful to see.”