It has been a busy last few days beginning on Thursday with the training of new watersports ambassadors :o) I was lucky enough to be asked to be one of three watersports ambassador role models. I worked alongside two other great role models from rowing and canoeing (Miriam Luke, Andrew Hadfield) and Tim Baillie came along to do the closing speech.
The watersports ambassadors were being trained as part of a new initiative being run by the youth sports trust on behalf of British Rowing and British Canoeing. The idea is to widen participation and get schools engaged with the sports. The day at Loughborough University brought secondary school students from around the country together. It was a fantastic day with them having the opportunity to try out running watersport based land games, getting them to think about how to link in with local clubs, how to publicise and promote their events and much more. To be involved in such a project is really special. Next week I am on a visit to the hub school Plymstock in Plymouth :o)
For me, the strangest part of the day was signing water bottles ... Something very new to me. The best bit was seeing the young people grow in confidence and work with other students from other schools. Then the nicest thing was seeing and meeting up with past friends from the canoeing fraternity (one of which I met when I was a student at Loughborough university as was now a teacher at one of the schools).
After a busy Thursday, I took some time out on Friday and in the evening I enjoyed a float and chat on the river. Most normal people would probably go to a pub and do the same, but there is something special about sitting on the river and letting the wind and flow spin you around.
Then today, to keep me out of trouble as I am trying to let my body recover from some bruised ribs amongst other things ... I did some volunteer marshalling at the local park run in Leamington! I stood there in the rain and cheered the runners by ... It was once again great to see people just getting out and as I cheered and clapped the last few people round ... The pleasure and joy in their faces as they saw the finish line made me getting wet all worth it. Everyone has to start somewhere and it takes a lot of guts to take that first plunge into getting yourself fitter and healthier. I hope they all continue and events like park run are a fab and brilliant non pressurised community to do it in!
What will the next week hold ... Apart from a fair amount of driving visiting a couple of schools, but I sense it will be very rewarding!