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Aviva Elevating Athletics

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Aviva Elevating Athletics


24 June 2009

Article as featured in Athletics Weekly Magazine

North London-based, School Sport Coordinator (SSC), Declan Hamblin speaks of his experience with Aviva Elevating Athletics:

As an SSC working with 14 schools in the North London area, I was delighted to read about the launch of the Aviva UKA Academy and the pivotal role Elevating Athletics will play in getting more of Britain’s children active. 

As well as using Elevating Athletics to teach children of all ages, I also tutor other teachers within my school sports partnership on its use. The 2008 revised version made significant enhancements based on feedback from teachers that have reinforced its position as an invaluable resource for the teaching of athletics and athleticism. 

The reasons for this are clear; Elevating Athletics is bang up to date in recognising contemporary teaching methods, and provides exactly what teachers require in a single resource:

One of the difficulties as a teacher is time management, and the ability to find information quickly and visually is essential. The Aviva Elevating Athletics DVD and workcards have been designed to meet this need and show how UKA have taken expert editorial advice from teachers.

The visuals are an essential part of the attraction – it is less threatening to a teacher than a more wordy resource. The layout is clear, and it is easy for a busy teacher to quickly set up an effective session for kids of all abilities that also ties in with their need to produce accurate lesson plans.

A range of “How to” cards with the pack are one of the best attributes, especially for specialist areas, and even the teaching tips for the teachers can be extracted as essential notes and provide to the pupils as a “key points” document. The DVD in itself can be used to assist the teacher or displayed to the children via the interactive white boards that now furnish most classrooms.

When I have been training teachers it has been good to see them begin to appreciate the concept of run, jump and throw as the basics of any physical activity and many realised they could use many of the running exercises as a warm up, even if it the following activity is not athletics.

By producing this resource,  athletics has taken a lead. All schools in the country receive a copy free of charge, thanks to the input of sponsors like Aviva, NASUWT and NSF. This in itself is a major step forward and underlines the value placed on getting athletics back into schools by UKA to give all children the chance to experience and enjoy the number one Olympic sport.

But don’t take the word of one SSCO, UKA recently conducted a survey of schools and teachers  using Elevating Athletics. Quotes from Teachers included:

‘This innovative resource package breaks away from the old stereotypes idea of Athletics, all those lines of kids waiting their turn, all those teacher’s worries about health and safety and all those letters saying “their little darling cannot do PE today’!

‘Definitely recommend it, especially to teachers whose knowledge of athletics is limited.  Real easy resource pack to use with a great DVD that practically shows you how the activities can be delivered, which is great to show students at the start of the lesson too, especially if your own demonstrations are not great. 

By differentiating the activities from the resource, all of the children from Reception to Year 6 are taking part in and enjoying athletics within the curriculum.  The number of children at athletics clubs was higher than ever last year as they all enjoy the fun activities that the club incorporates (from Elevating Athletics).’

If you’re involved in teaching or coaching and have not yet seen a copy of Elevating Athletics, make sure you contact avivaelevating@uka.org.uk