Longfield Primary School

RTW Longfield 1

Please donate generously to Cancer Research : https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Dan-Thompson11

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Date : 9th July, 2019

Number of talk attendees (total to date) : 750 (4237)

Number of runners (total to date) : 90 (5678)

Run map and details : https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/3829088754

We’ve recently introduced exercise sessions as part of the Run the World school visit menu of options. At first glance this may seem a little odd. The schools I visit in the UK, and most of the schools I visit around the world, have PE Depts who are, of course, more than capable of providing students with a high quality exercise session.

However, the Run the World sessions are a little different. They’re designed to fit in with the Run the World school talks. This means that they need to work in a confined space such as an assembly hall. The students also need to be able to do them in their normal school clothes.

The first talk at Longfield Primary School was to nursery, reception and Y 1 students and I must admit I questioned whether they’d benefit from an exercise session. However, Ms Vlachou – the PE teacher at Longfield (pictured above) who invited me to give the talk – politely insisted. And she was absolutely right. We did ‘Giraffe’ ; ‘Toe Touchers’ ; ‘Spaghetti, Meatball, Cheese’ ; ‘Teacup’ ; and ‘Washing Machine’ together and the students all threw themselves into the exercises with great enthusiasm.

Sessions with the Y 2 & 3 students and then the Y 4-6 students followed with the exercises becoming progressively a little more challenging as the audience got older.

The only slight issue was that the person leading the exercises, i.e. me, couldn’t touch his toes or stand like a flamingo with the sole of one foot on the thigh of the other leg…..

However, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s go back to the beginning and why an inflexible man with poor balance was leading a series of exercise sessions.

I’m currently undertaking a challenge – Run the World – to complete a 10 km run in all 206 countries in the world. (I’ve run in 173 countries to date.) I’m doing the challenge to raise funds for Cancer Research and to promote the importance of an active, healthy lifestyle.

The Run the World junior school talk combines stories from my runs around the world with healthy living advice focusing on exercise, diet and sleep. The idea behind the exercise sessions is to reinforce the advice about the importance of being active and give students a short set of exercises that are fun and can be done at almost any moment in their lives.

After the talks, I went for a 1 km run with the Y 6 students around the school field. The students were great and I’d love to show you a video of the run or the exercise sessions but, understandably, it wasn’t possible to take pictures of the students.

It’s not that long ago that my own daughters were finishing Y 6 and I know it’s an exciting time with the move to senior school just one summer holiday away.

I wish them all the best for the future and hope that they, and all the other students, enjoyed the talk, the exercises and the run as much as I enjoyed meeting them!

And I also hope they will stay involved with Run the World – either via social media (links below) or by joining in the UK, and final, leg of Run the World on Hampstead Heath on 4th July 2020.

Finally, a big thank you to Ms Vlachou and all the other staff at Longfield for the invitation and warm welcome!

If you’d like to help fight cancer then I and, far more importantly, cancer sufferers around the world, would be immensely grateful for any donations to Cancer Research : https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Dan-Thompson11

Please like / follow Run the World on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter because it would be great to stay in touch and because, however silly it may sound, it makes all the travel and running that little bit easier if you think people care!


About Run the World

I'm running 10 km in every country in the world - a total of 205 countries - by the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. I'm doing the Run the World challenge to promote the benefits of sport and physical activity and to raise money for cancer research following the death of my mother from cancer. If you'd like to donate to Cancer Research - https://www.justgiving.com/Dan-Thompson11/ - then I know they'd be very grateful.
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