Becky and Team GB stars cause a splash with local school children

Local children have been treated to a morning of laughter and learning in the pool with Becky and 2 Team GB swimmers.

More than 100 school children attended Everyone Active’s Plymouth life Centre to take part in swimming lessons with Becky and Plymouth-based Team GB divers, Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow.

SwimStars hosted the event in conjunction with Everyone Active. Becky gave a talk to all the children about the importance of swimming and then had a bit of fun with a Q&A.

The students, who were from local schools Stuart Road, Oakwood and Riverside, then had the opportunity to get in the pool and try a variety of water-based activities. They received swimming lessons led by the athletes and reached new heights by giving diving a go for themselves. They were also taught valuable skills to help keep them safe around water, including pool-side CPR training delivered by Royal Life Saving Society trainers.

Becky loved the event and felt it provided a real important lesson for the kids, “We had a fantastic morning at the Plymouth Life Centre. It’s so important that children feel confident in and around water, and the skills they learn at events like this will help to keep them safe throughout their lives.

“It was a great opportunity for children to give different types of water-based sports a try and find an activity they feel passionately about. By listening to the experiences of professional athletes, I hope they will feel inspired to carry on swimming and perhaps even one day become Olympic competitors themselves.” 

The Plymouth Life Centre has been awarded the status of a High Performance Diving Centre by the Amateur Swim Association, and has provided a training base for a number of Olympic athletes, including Tom Daley, Dan Goodfellow, Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow.

Last year the centre worked with 3,000 pupils from 69 local schools to deliver an intensive school swimming programme, where each child received 15 lessons over a three week period. The successful programme has been running with support of Everyone Active and Plymouth City Council for four years.

David Greenwood, Everyone Active’s Contract Manager in Plymouth, said: “It is vital that children are taught skills to keep the safe in the water. It will give them the confidence to benefit from the fantastic facilities we have on offer here and enjoy water-based sports, which are a great way to get active and stay healthy.

“All of the children had a brilliant time at the event. It was great for them to hear from world-class athletes, who showed them what can be achieved if they continue to swim and work hard in the water.”

The three schools taking part on the day were selected after being awarded accolades by Everyone Active that recognised them for their high achievements in water-based learning. The awards were giving during the city’s Sports School Partnership annual PE conference on 14th September 2016.

Council Leader Ian Bowyer, said: “Any initiatives that encourage children to have fun and stay safe in the water are a good thing – especially here in Britain’s Ocean City. Being able to swim is such an important skill and it’s great that top athletes like Becky, Tonia and Sarah are coming along to support this event and promote water safety.”