Charity launches online After School Sport Club to fill void created by lockdown

Children across the UK are being encouraged to ‘stay active and keep up their after-school sport’ by former sports stars and children’s charity the Youth Sport Trust.
After School Sport Club launches today online

A new online After School Sport Club will launch today (12 November) to help fill the void of school and community sport in children’s lives created by the latest lockdown.

Created by the Youth Sport Trust, children will be able to tune in from home and enjoy being led through a range of fun, exciting and challenging activities which will help young people stay fit and healthy while also supporting their broader personal development. The daily online ‘club’ sessions will be led by YST athlete mentors including former British sprinter Jeanette Kwakye and Paralympian Kate Grey.

The first After School Sport Club will start at 5pm today led by World Champion inline skater Jenna Downing and last for 30 minutes. The club will then run every day at 5pm from 16 November for five weeks until 18 December.  

Ali Oliver MBE, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust, said: 

We know during the first national lockdown children’s activity levels fell impacting on their physical and mental wellbeing. Now with grassroots community sport on pause, we need to be creative to find new ways of helping children and young people to stay active and have fun playing.

We don’t want children to miss out on grassroots sport and extracurricular activities because of Coronavirus and that is why we have come together as a charity and called on our athlete mentors, to launch one big, online sports club that children can access – wherever they are. 

After School Sport Club is just one of the ways we are living out our commitment to help every child enjoy the life changing benefits of play and sport. Sport has the power to unite us like nothing else. It has the power to improve physical, social and emotional wellbeing like nothing else, and heaven knows we need it now more than ever.

Every day, After School Sport Club will have a different theme based on which skills athlete mentors focus on for children to develop. They are: 

  • Adventure Monday – this might involve getting children to do floor wall climbing and map reading all within their living room or home space 
  •  Tuesday Play – Imaginative play utilising resources in the house to create games and activities to get active 
  •  Wild Wednesday – High tempo competitive activities involving personal challenges  
  •  Thinking Thursday – Introducing cognitive challenges for children through movement. Games could include active noughts and crosses, and introducing an element of competition – whether that be against themselves, the clock, their siblings or remotely against friends 
  •  Fun Friday – A chance for children to let loose and have some fun. Dancing and doing what makes them feel good 
 
Jenna Downing, World Champion inline skater and athlete mentor for the Youth Sport Trust will kick off the first After School Sport Club. She said: 

After School Sport Club is going to be so much fun. I think I speak on behalf of all the YST athlete mentors when I say that we can’t wait to launch and help children and young people fill the empty sport void in their lives that has been created by this lockdown. 

"Staying active and engaged in sport is one essential way we can help mitigate the damage being done to a generation of young people during these challenging times. After School Sport Club will teach skill development and physical literacy but most of all it will be fun and a chance for children to connect through sport.

Sessions will be broadcast live for children and young people through the Youth Sport Trust’s YouTube channel and access is free. 

For more information, please visit www.youthsporttrust.org/AfterSchoolSportClub

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