My blog is starting to really tell the tale of how many events I’ve covered so far in my Gold Challenge – but I’ve realised that I’ve not posted about them all. So here’s a quick run down of all the other events I’ve completed so far, with a quick picture of two for posterity’s sake…
Thanks to the LTA, we did our Gold Challenge tennis at the National Tennis Centre. Fantastic facilities and 3 excellent sessions with our LTA coaches.
One drills session on drills, one on fitness and one on shot technique where I learnt that I’m currently hitting every shot in completely the wrong way.
Hard work but very useful.
I’ve never played hand ball before but I’ve seen it on television in Continental Europe and always wanted to try it. It’s a bit like playing football using your hands – or basketball with a goal rather than a hoop. Either way its great fun and a good work out.
In my first session of trampolining I encountered equipment different from the trampolines you may have tried in people’s gardens – far more bounce and no safety nets. Somewhat nerve wracking as a result but you can also do a lot more than you can on a garden trampoline. Some of the more experienced people were 20-30 ft in the air doing multiple flips and tricks. I managed to semi master the ‘arse bounce’ (there may be another name for it…), the 360 degree turn and the star jump.
The second (and final) trampolining session saw me joined by a few Gold Challengers so we all pushed ourselves. Managed a few mini(scule) routines and learnt the front drop where you land horizontally, face down, on the trampoline. Also learnt that the real name for a ‘bottom bounce’ is a seat drop.
If you do go trampolining then try doing a normal two footed jump just after you get off the trampoline. You’ll only manage to jump a few inches – very weird sensation.
Joined the charming Baynes family – two adults and three girls under 10 – for an introduction to archery. The Baynes family are doing the Family Activity Challenge on behalf of STARS – http://www.stars.org.uk/ – and were being filmed by BBC East Midlands.
It all took place courtesy of the Bowmen of Glen Archery Society – http://www.bowmenofglen.org/ – in a field just outside Great Glen in Leicestershire. We started off with the targets at 10m and, under the watchful eye of Terry Jobson and his fellow bowmen, we were soon on target and even hitting the odd inner and outer ‘gold’. The rain then started sheeting down but I’m really looking forward to shooting longer distances (the Olympic distance is 70m…).
And finally, a quick note to say that September saw me take a trip to Oxford University who are one of our charity partners. I was invited to speak about the Gold Challenge at their alumni week-end – it was part of a session on the Olympic Games and it was a fascinating audience. In particular, I met Sir Roger Bannister – the first man to run a mile in less than 4 minutes (atOxford’s Iffley Roadtrack.) True sporting legend and a charming man.
That’s it for now – but I’ve got canoeing, athletics, boccia and synchronised swimming to come so stay tuned…