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Coach volunteering Initiative between Hallamshire Harriers and SAYLS (Sheffield Academy of Young Leaders in Sport)

Posted on 09/05/11

Halllamshire Harriers, a member of the South Yorkshire McCain Athletics Network have been working with SAYLS for the second academic year: providing an opportunity for young volunteers to get involved in the delivery of coaching at the Club’s athletics sessions.

Last academic year was a bit experimental for both parties, but lessons have been learnt this year and, although still early days in establishing a full strategy, they have a much more structured approach to the sessions than they previously did.

Currently, Hallamshire Harriers enjoy the benefit of 3 young leaders from Y11-Y13 school years: Aroosa, Dipo and Lewis; plus Dan, a student at Sheffield Hallam University who is now in his second year with the club, and has taken on the role of mentoring the others.

The students assist coaches through the sessions, from warm up to delivery, and, as their experience increases, take more pro-active roles in the sessions. Although UKA rules mean they cannot be left unsupervised, it is often possible for the lead coach to stand back and just offer advice.

The club have found that the students interact really well, particularly with the younger athletes, and now regard them as an integral part of the evenings. The three students were introduced to the SY coach development programme, starting with the Fundamentals of Movement course which took place on 30th of March 2011.

One of the students has also joined the club as an athlete, and trains on other evenings. The club are hopeful he will be competing for them this summer in the Young Athletes league.