What do you get when you cross a Netball Club with a YM Student Team?
At the start of Term 2 a few members of the YM student team and I found ourselves sitting around in the cold wind on the side of the netball courts one Wednesday afternoon waiting while our family members trained with their respective STA Netball Club teams.
An idea was born! 🐣
As the YM student Team motto is to ‘spread active travel fever’ we decided to bring our bikes the following week and offer to run bike games for the siblings who are waiting.
I checked the idea over with the Netball Club President (luckily a previous YM Champion) who helped me to send a notice to all the club families.
We chose to run games session between 4:30 and 5:30 to best serve the multiple training times of all the St A netball teams to give siblings and parents the opportunity to play on their bikes while their netballer family member trains, and also for the netballers to join in either before or after their own netball training.
I found a great resource to use to help with structuring the games. I downloaded this from the ACT’s Department of Transport’s website.
It was prefect because it has a whole section for basketball courts and also sections for grass, which is what is available at our local netball courts.
I handed over the booklet to one of our YM student leaders who took on the task of coordinating the sessions himself. I don’t simply sit back though (otherwise I’d get cold!) I get to participate in the games and only offer guidance when necessary.
A crowd favourite is consistently the ‘elimination circle’ which has been nicknamed the ‘circle of death’ ☠️ The sessions also have time trials, follow the leader, bike chasey, track stands, dodge etc.
Although at first we only focussed on St A families who are involved in the St A Netball Club, the word spread quickly and throughout the weeks we have had just as many participants from the rest of the school as we have had from the Netball Club. Other parents are joining in and tell me that they are also having a lot of fun too!
This initiative has an amazing community atmosphere with parents and students from all year groups mixing together. We have been extremely lucky to be able to join up with the STA netball team to bring the initiative into the light, both literally and figuratively!
The bike handling skills that students are learning through the hours upon hours of bike games will help them with confidence in difficult situations, such as tricky traffic, well into adulthood - supporting a lifetime of confident active travel.
Additionally the initiative has provided an opportunity for the YM Student Team Leaders to practice their leadership skills in group facilitation and delivery of engaging sessions.
This story is related to Bike Education sessions (4)
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