More than 70 of the Island’s promising sporting stars enjoyed an action-packed two-day boot camp recently, at another successful event for Isle of Man Sport Aid Academy.
The focus was on ‘physical preparation’, with the sessions looking into effective training methods for the young athletes to ensure long-term success.
The Saturday saw the sports stars complete a series of physically demanding tests, run by coaches from the Isle of Man Sport Institute and aided by students from University College of Mann. A range of tests were used to assess overall athletic ability, including standing long jump, a strength test, acceleration test and multi-stage fitness assessment.
Isle of Man Sport Aid Academy Performance Coordinator Chris Quine said: ‘I was really impressed with the performance of the athletes on Saturday, it was a demanding day but spirits were high and everyone did really well!
‘It was great to see the athletes take the tests in their stride. With a wide range of sporting backgrounds we made sure the tests were fairly simple but they are still a good measure of athleticism. We were also measuring the height of the athletes too. We hope to repeat this exercise in the future and compare the results as the athletes grow and mature.’
Sunday was a two-hour workshop. Reflecting on the previous day, it examined differences in performance for young athletes and the best way to deal with a performance testing situation, as well as what can be done to ensure athletes balance their training as they grow and develop. It was run by local sports consultant Paul Jones, as well as members of the Academy facilitators team.
The Sport Aid Academy is a partnership between Isle of Man Sport and sponsors SMP Partners and Newfield. It works with the Island’s young sporting stars to prepare them for their future, equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed in elite sport.
Mark Reynolds, Director at Newfield which co-sponsors the academy, said: ‘We are thoroughly enjoying being a part of the Sport Aid Academy this year. It is interesting to watch the athletes develop and grow as we get further into the programme - I am looking forward to seeing the progress made by the end of the academy year!’
Mark Denton, Managing Director of co-sponsor SMP Partners, said: ‘The latest event for the Sport Aid Academy really reinforces why these athletes have been chosen for the programme. Not only were their test results impressive, especially considering the age of some of these athletes, their determination to succeed was apparent over the course of the weekend. The lessons the young athletes are learning at the academy are no doubt going to help them, not only in their sporting development, but in their wider growth and progression as well.’
Photo - Athletes set for the 1200m run, the final test of the day.