Better collaborated with Team GB to get as many people as possible active in their communities over the weekend. Inspired by the achievements of Team GB athletes and the amazing efforts of local community heroes, I Am Team GB created the Nation’s Biggest Sports Day, which took place on Saturday 24th August 2019.
Staff across the Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) and Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC) Better leisure centres supported with a range of activities available for free at Hammersmith Fitness and Squash Centre, Phoenix Fitness Centre and Janet Adegoke Swimming Pool, and Kensington Leisure Centre. In addition to the activities within the centres, staff attended Team GB’s showpiece Westfield Hero event outside Westfield Shepherds Bush.
This event was organised by Team GB, in partnership with Limelight Sports, where the public could engage with a range of activities as well as meet previous, current, and future Team GB Olympians: Chloe Rogers (Hockey), Laura Kenny (Cycling), and Holly Hunt (Hockey). The athletes spent the day joining in with the activities, alongside Pride the Lion, and completed a Q&A session on the main stage.
The Community Sports Manager delivered a two hour mini tennis session, 10:00-12:00, and Group Exercise Instructors ran a dance aerobics class, 13:0-13:00, FitBeats class, 14:00-14:45, and yoga, 16:00-16:45.
Kensington Leisure Center staff provided information on junior products, memberships (including the free Residents Card), and ran a timed fitness challenge involving a static leg raise, holding a medicine ball. Thirty-one people attempted he challenge, with the longest times in the junior and adult categories receiving a month’s free membership at Kensington. Goodie-bags were also handed out with further information, Spa vouchers, and Better gifts.
Nine different sporting activities were available at Kensington. This included Toddler’s World (with Public Health’s Change4Life Disney 10-minute Shake-ups), racket sports, basketball, volleyball, junior gym, swimming, and yoga.
Three volleyball players supported the event: Elizabeth Reid (London 2012 Olympian), Verere Oyearone (RBKC GLL Sport Foundation athlete), and Widad Nassiri (performance student-athlete). Regular Kensignton user Afrasyab Khalil, who is a national level basketball player and RBKC GSF funded athlete, supported the basketball session. All athletes demonstrated their skills and provided training drills and tips to those that attended the sessions.
Every child who attended also received a gold I Am Team GB medal and I Am Team GB t-shirts were given out to adults.
Hammersmith ran three weightlifting and powerlifting sessions, a junior session 11:00-12:00, followed by two one-hour adult sessions. The sessions were supported by national champions, LBHF GSF athletes, and one Community Sports Volunteer.
The activity was set up on a squash court with various interactive elements, allowing people to engage in part or the whole session. The court was dressed up with I Am Team GB bunting and special balloons to mark the event. Doughnuts were also provided to all to celebrate further.
Five juniors and four adults were able to try the sport for the first time. Three young girls provided some compelling feedback at the end of the session: “I felt strong and proud of myself.”, “It was a really nice experience, I felt really strong after the lesson. 5/5 stars.”, and “I learnt weightlifting during the session and I thought Martin was an awesome coach!”.
Phoenix provided free swimming for all from 1pm, including the women’s only session.
The Community Sports Manager commented, “The participation in the activities across the boroughs was fantastic and as we know that providing opportunities for children to trial new sports, with appropriate exit routes and pathways, can lead to lifelong engagement – I believe the day was a great success.
“The local athletes that attended were brilliant role models and you could see the enjoyment the children felt playing with them."
Please visit our webpages for information on our activities and facilities:
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham