Get the ready, set, rar­ing to go for life

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By LEE-ANNE ED­WARDS

If the re­ac­tion of the nearly 700 kids at the Get Set Go launch is any­thing to go by, then the lat­est move to in­crease the ac­tiv­ity level of school chil­dren is al­ready a hit.

Four Porirua schools joined oth­ers from Lower Hutt and Welling­ton at the ASB In­door Sports Cen­tre in Kil­birnie on March 29 for the launch.

De­spite the huge num­ber of young­sters present, all were en­thu­si­as­tic par­tic­i­pants in ses­sions clev­erly de­signed to leave no-one out.

Get Set Go is an Ath­letic New Zealand pro­gramme for chil­dren aged four to eight, that aims to de­velop the ba­sic skills they need to ef­fec­tively par­tic­i­pate in sport and games. A range of ac­tiv­i­ties have been de­vel­oped that help kids learn to run, jump, throw, catch and work as a team.

It’s a re­sponse to big changes over the past 20 years in the way chil­dren use their leisure time, said Get Set Go man­ager Karen Lau­rie.

‘‘The in­flu­ence of elec­tronic me­dia and com­puter games means that the level of out­door play has dropped. Kids are still play­ing, but not as much as they used to so some may not have mas­tered those ba­sic move­ment skills.’’

The feed­back from teach­ers and coaches in schools and clubs us­ing the pro­gramme has been ex­tremely pos­i­tive, she said.

‘‘A key theme emerg­ing from this feed­back is how the pro­gramme has given them the knowl­edge base and tools they need to teach ba­sic skill el­e­ments to chil­dren, but in a fun, play-based ap­proach that chil­dren re­ally respond to.’’

Prin­ci­pal fun­der, Ki­wis­port man­ager Peter Wood­manAldridge, said his group was pleased to bring the pro­gramme on board to be­come part of the Fun­da­men­tal Move­ment Skills Pro­gramme.

‘‘Com­pe­tence in these foun­da­tion move­ment skills plays a cen­tral role in healthy cog­ni­tive, so­cial, phys­i­cal and emo­tional growth,’’ he said.

Oth­ers help­ing fund the pro- gramme in­clude Sport Welling­ton and New Zealand Post.

Over the last 18 months Ki­wis­port has in­vested $492, 540 in the over­all project, which has seen 17,212 chil­dren from schools across Porirua and the Hutt Val­ley re­ceive at least one block of eight lessons.

The Fun­da­men­tal Move­ment Skills Pro­gramme also in­cludes Learn to Swim, Movem­prove – the Gyms­ports NZ foun­da­tion pro­gramme – and Foot­ball in Schools.

‘‘These foun­da­tion skills will help the kids to gain con­fi­dence, there­fore giv­ing them the self­be­lief to try their hand and many dif­fer­ent sports, cre­at­ing many new op­por­tu­ni­ties for them,’’ said Mr Wood­manAldridge. ‘‘Chil­dren who de­velop com­pe­tence in these im­por­tant build­ing blocks in early pri­mary school years have been shown to have greater par­tic­i­pa­tion lev­els in phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity ex­pe­ri­ences, both through­out later school­ing and in adult life.’’

In­for­ma­tion on the Fun­da­men­tal Move­ment Skills pro­gramme at sportwelling­ton.org.nz

Team­work? They’re on the same side but Jayde Burns, sec­ond left, is de­ter­mined to hold back Ngati Toa School team-mates Ella At­tree and Shayla Wi­neera-roberts. Mean­while Dazmin Me­t­u­ariki, far left, and Liam Mor­ri­son check out where the op­po­si­tion is.

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