Building on the success of last year’s virtual programme and in response to the UK’s third national lockdown, the SPAR Lancashire School Games has launched a new virtual programme of activities, designed to keep children across the county active and achieve their 60 active daily minutes.
Inactivity levels amongst children and young people have soared during the coronavirus pandemic, with the closure of schools, gyms and sports clubs significantly affecting children’s access to regular sporting opportunities.
Dominic Holroyd, Children and Young People Development Officer at Active Lancashire said, “The number of children meeting the government’s recommend 60 minutes of exercise has significantly decreased since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. Without regular P.E. classes and competitive sport, there is a real danger that many children will not meet the recommended daily allowance, which is essential in maintaining good physical and mental health.
“The SPAR Lancashire School Games virtual programme offers downloadable resources for all age groups, in line with school P.E. curriculum and is designed to be fun and engaging. Our network of Lancashire School Games Organisers have created ‘Stay at Home Heroes Challenge’ videos and interactive activities that meet government guidance and can be adapted to small spaces with equipment found in the home.
The SPAR Lancashire School Games is the county’s largest youth sporting programme, engaging over 100,000 school children in 2019. Hosted on the games’ website and social media channels, the programme is organised and delivered by Active Lancashire and 14 Lancashire School Games Organisers.
During 2020, the games went online to great success, engaging more schools than ever before, hosting a ten week virtual programme of activity, a virtual sports day and an Active Mile challenge, which saw families across the county travelling 28,500 miles together.
Dominic added, “It is so important for children to be active. Physical activity not only helps to protect against obesity and diabetes, it also helps with concentration levels, mental health, self-confidence and good sleeping patterns. We are calling on parents, teachers and carers to ensure children are given the opportunity for daily exercise, whether that be through cycling, walking, running or by signing up to the Virtual SPAR Lancashire School Games.”
To find out more about the SPAR Lancashire School Games programme, visit www.lancashireschoolgames.co.uk