National School Sport Week at Home: young people want to do more sport

The annual Youth Sport Trust National School Sport campaign united families, communities, schools and businesses in a week-long celebration.

Sport and Physical Education help young people to connect, improve confidence and enhance wellbeing. After months of lockdown and missing friends, young people have never needed this more. Sports, like netball, have such a crucial role to play in promoting young people’s wellbeing and this has never been more apparent than it is now.

England Netball pledged support by offering a series of live virtual netball events throughout the week. Over 2,300 children, young people and their families took to virtual netball courts in living rooms, gardens, classrooms and playgrounds across the country to take part.

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Many took to social media to share their excitement and positive stories online.

New research published by the Youth Sport Trust shows that one consequence of weeks of lockdown has been that many young people now see sport and Physical Education as more important to their lives. In fact, 51% of young people – about 4 million – say they will now do more sport and exercise than they did before the lockdown.

England Netball Chief Executive Fran Connolly said: “Despite these unusual times; it is more important than ever to continue to support all young people to develop a love of being active.

“This week we’ve seen thousands of children, young people, their families and school communities engaging in an array of exciting sporting challenges. Over 600 participants told us these virtual events had given them their very first experience of playing netball.

“We’re really looking forward to getting back on court and continuing our commitment to improving the wellbeing of children and young people.”

The week also saw over 500 secondary schools register to be part of an exciting new, innovative offer – Blended Netball. Blended Netball is a leadership programme designed for mainstream girls to deliver netball to girls with special educational needs within their schools – providing netball for pupils who may not otherwise be involved.

Find out more by listening to The Netball Show podcast here.

England Netball’s ParaNetball strategy aims to provide experience and create opportunities for deaf and disabled women and girls across England. To see the full strategy and the work England Netball are doing to understand, engage, maximise and empower click here.

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