Get yourself active blog

Get Yourself Active goes to a summit in order to make some sporting sense.

Thursday 31 May 2018

It’s always interesting to see what other charities are doing when it comes to helping disabled people get physically active.  So on Wednesday 23rd  May Leo Capella, Communications Officer for Get Yourself Active took a short walk across the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to the Lee Valley Velodrome to go to the Sporting Sense Summit. At the summit, Sense (a charity that works with people with complex communication needs) revealed their findings from their flagship project Sporting Sense. Leo shares his thoughts on the Summit and what happened when he got to do some inclusive cycling….

Figure 1 The view from inside the Lee Valley (Olympic) Velodrome. What’s not featured in this photo is some cyclists who were doing training while the summit was going on.

What came out of the summit was how much that physical activity makes sense for disabled people. And not just because of the benefits that physical activity can provide for our own physical and mental health. It also helps disabled people integrate in society as I found out through the speeches that were made during the summit. In fact, according to a report released by the Jo Cox commission on loneliness, half of non-disabled people don’t believe they have anything in common with disabled people. So including disabled people in physical activity helps actually integrate disabled people into society, among other benefits.
Also it was interesting to hear the speakers including Dame Tanni Grey Thompson whom having been a Paralympic Athlete had to get back to physical activity after getting out of shape, which is why aside from being an ambassador for Disability Rights UK she is now the chair of UKactive.

Also speaking was visually impaired rock climber John Churcher who had a wide and impressive array of achievements when it came to physical activity. This includes being the first person to Para climb the Eiger – a challenging mountain to climb.

Above all I suppose the biggest insight I got was just how many components or parts are needed for a successful project to work. From the planning with partners to making sure that there are good ways of evaluating the work. Positive outcomes from Sporting Sense over its two year existence included getting over 1000 disabled people physically active, upskilling (developing) over 250 workers in physical activity, well beyond the project’s initial expectations.
And at the end of the summit being one of those people who’s always up for trying something in the name of campaigning I got to ride a hand cycle which was part of an Inclusive Cycling session with an array of different bi- and tricycles.

Figure 2 Leo Capella riding a handcycle as part of an Inclusive Cycling session at the Sporting Sense Summit and having a lot of fun doing so.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when riding the bicycle using my hands to propel myself and steer it, however once explained to me was an easy thing to do. So I would recommend it to people who are not just physically disabled but people with neurological conditions who might feel that a bicycle is unstable for them and want to try something different. It was also a good arm strengthening exercise too. On an interesting side note, the day I went to the Summit was in the run up to the famous Indianapolis 500 motor race which involves cars racing around an oval circuit, something that 2012 Italian Paralympic Champion Alex Zanardi used to do. Although Zanardi never competed at Indy he raced a similar type of racing car on ovals, before a horrific accident in Germany saw both of his legs amputated. However after his accident, alongside continuing to race cars he took up hand-cycling and became a multiple Paralympic champion in the sport.

All in all the event was a positive one which I gained a lot of knowledge from. And aside from thanking Sense for inviting me to the summit I’d like to congratulate them on their achievements so far with Sporting Sense and wish them all the best for the next year of the project.

In other news: If you live in and around Wolverhampton and would like to try riding a adapted  bicycle or tricycle then there’s an opportunity to DO just that at an Inclusive Cycling try out day on Wednesday 6th June.

Basildon sets perfect example for increasing participation

A local project in Basildon has harnessed the positive influence that carers and supporters e.g. family members, day services, residential homes and paid support, can have on encouraging people with learning disabilities to become more active.

The ‘supporting me to be active’ pilot programme was launched in Basildon by inclusive sport organisation Sport For Confidence in partnership with Active Essex, the county sports partnership for Greater Essex.

Basildon was selected for the pilot district due to its high prevalence of people living with learning disabilities (3,358 people) in relation to levels of inactivity (28.7% of the Basildon population).

Lyndsey Barrett, co-founder of Sport For Confidence, said:

“We have identified that people living with learning disabilities tend to have small support circles, which often includes family members, friends and their carers.

“We have been working closely with those within these circles to raise awareness of the benefits of keeping active. We believe that these ‘support ambassadors’ have an important role to play to encourage and inspire more people with disabilities to engage with sport and physical activity.”

Several carers from local residential homes and support agencies and were selected to participate in the programme as ‘support ambassadors’. The organisations involved included Papworth Trust, Essex Cares Ltd (ECL), Anvil House and Nexus Support.

Occupational Therapists from Sport For Confidence worked closely with participants to understand the value of physical activity and what they see as potential barriers to increasing participation.

Findings showed that ambassadors were most concerned about transport costs, staffing and people’s perceptions of inclusive sport.

The programme encouraged them to think about how they could overcome these barriers with the people they support and develop a plan that will help them work towards a more active lifestyle.

Part of this planning involved a ‘supporting me to be active’ workshop, which educated participants of the benefits gained from keeping active, as well as highlighting opportunities to participate in inclusive sport and physical activity in the local area.

Karen Mannix, Local Business Manager at Essex Cares Ltd, said:

“The programme has helped us identify a clear pathway to providing more physical activities to clients under our care.

“Thanks to the programme, six individuals with learning disabilities are now taking part in at least one multi-sport session a week and we have seen tremendous benefits to the mental wellbeing of those involved. It’s great to see them enjoy themselves with their peers.”

Following on from the programme, four participants with learning disabilities themselves went on to become ‘All Together’ ambassadors to further inspire other disabled people to take part in sport and physical activity.

The All Together ambassador programme was launched by Active Essex to raise awareness of the opportunities, facilities and support available to increase participation in sport and physical activity.

Last year, Active Essex announced a four-year strategy to change one million lives to get Essex active. This included a key priority to improve health and wellbeing of disabled people and people with long-term health conditions which accounts for over 17% of the Greater Essex population.

Hayley Chapman, Relationship Manager – North Thematic Lead for Inclusion at Active Essex, said:

“The ‘supporting me to be active’ programme has shown how important the role of the carer is when encouraging people with learning disabilities to become more active.

“We hope that this model can continue to address some of the challenges faced by people with learning disabilities in participating in physical activities and the workshop can be replicated as good practice across other districts.”

Several carers from local residential homes and support agencies and were selected to participate in the programme as ‘support ambassadors’. The organisations involved included Papworth Trust, Essex Cares Ltd (ECL), Anvil House and Nexus Support.

Occupational Therapists from Sport For Confidence worked closely with participants to understand the value of physical activity and what they see as potential barriers to increasing participation.

Findings showed that ambassadors were most concerned about transport costs, staffing and people’s perceptions of inclusive sport.

The programme encouraged them to think about how they could overcome these barriers with the people they support and develop a plan that will help them work towards a more active lifestyle.

Part of this planning involved a ‘supporting me to be active’ workshop, which educated participants of the benefits gained from keeping active, as well as highlighting opportunities to participate in inclusive sport and physical activity in the local area.

Karen Mannix, Local Business Manager at Essex Cares Ltd, said:

“The programme has helped us identify a clear pathway to providing more physical activities to clients under our care.

“Thanks to the programme, six individuals with learning disabilities are now taking part in at least one multi-sport session a week and we have seen tremendous benefits to the mental wellbeing of those involved. It’s great to see them enjoy themselves with their peers.”

Following on from the programme, four participants with learning disabilities themselves went on to become ‘All Together’ ambassadors to further inspire other disabled people to take part in sport and physical activity.

The All Together ambassador programme was launched by Active Essex to raise awareness of the opportunities, facilities and support available to increase participation in sport and physical activity.

Last year, Active Essex announced a four-year strategy to change one million lives to get Essex active. This included a key priority to improve health and well-being of disabled people and people with long-term health conditions which accounts for over 17% of the Greater Essex population.

Hayley Chapman, Relationship Manager – North Thematic Lead for Inclusion at Active Essex, said:

“The ‘supporting me to be active’ programme has shown how important the role of the carer is when encouraging people with learning disabilities to become more active.

“We hope that this model can continue to address some of the challenges faced by people with learning disabilities in participating in physical activities and the workshop can be replicated as good practice across other districts.”

In other news: Saddle Up for Summer with Accessibility Mark

 

Surrey Wheels for All Sessional Positions

Tuesday 29 May 2018

Cycling Projects are now recruiting for a number of sessional staff to help to deliver a well-received inclusive cycling offer for the county of Surrey.

Covering regions: With particular focus in the West of the county (Woking) and in the East of the county (Epsom) with occasional delivery opportunities in other regions of Surrey

Part time hours to support the delivery of the Surrey Wheels for All programme.

Including weekday, evening and weekday activities. Approx.no. of hours between 5 and 12 hours per week. Rate of £10.75 per hour

Cycling Projects is pleased to announce the continued growth of the countywide Surrey Wheels for All programme, and we are keen to take the Wheels for All service to new and existing regions within Surrey. This is an exciting opportunity to join the country’s leading inclusive cycling charity with a strong focus on disability access, health improvement and social inclusion for all ages and abilities.

As Wheels for All sessional staff, you will be responsible for the delivery of the inclusive cycling sessions, engaging with existing participants and welcoming and supporting new participants to Wheels for All across Surrey. Initially this is a funded programme through to March 2021 with funding and investment from council partners and contributions from exiting participants and partners.

You will be a highly motivated individual with experience of working across a broad section of partners. You will ideally have experience of delivering community projects and had experience of working with people of all abilities/or previously worked for a charity. You will be enthusiastic, driven, well organised and able to embrace cycling as a credible and beneficial activity for people regardless of their ability.

Essentially, we want you to be a part of a solid movement of inclusive cycling activities across all regions of the county of Surrey. You will be part of an effective and exciting movement of bringing cycling to people across many locations regardless of their ability.

Application deadline is Tuesday 12th June 5pm 2018.

Interviews will be held week commencing 18th June 2018.

To apply, please request an application pack and return the application form along with your covering letter & email to janet.haynes@cycling.org.uk

Surrey WFA sessional recruitment advert May 2018

Job-Description Surrey WFA Sessional staff

The original advert can be found here. 

In other news: Our Physical activity and sports info page can give you links to information from key organisations in the sport sector. 

Turn Up and Play Centre for Females OVER 16 Years Old with a Disability

Friday 18 May 2018

The Turn Up and Play Centre aims to give females with a disability the opportunity to play sport in a safe, supportive and tailored environment

Dates for the next sessions are:

  • Friday 25th May
  • Friday 1st June
  • Friday 8th June
  • Friday 15th June
  • Friday 22nd June
  • Friday 29th June

Venue = West Riding County Football Association, Fleet Lane, Woodlesford, Leeds, LS26 8NX

Time = 1pm-2pm

Cost = £3 per session

To participate send an email Colan.Leung@westridingfa.com to request for registration and diversity forms.

In other news apply for special Olympic coach bursary scheme

Special Olympic Coach Bursary Scheme is now open

Friday 18 May 2018

The second round of Special Olympic Coach Bursary Scheme is now open until the 11th June.

 

 

The bursary is for £100.00 towards the cost of a level 1 or 2 Coaching Qualification and recipients will need to enhance current Special Olympic Provision within South/West Yorkshire or create new provision (with the support of the Network in either South/West Yorkshire).

The application form can be found here: https://yorkshire.sportsuite.co.uk/forms/view/socoachbursary

Get Yourself Active Goes to Elevate

Thursday 17 May 2018

It’s nice to have a relevant trade show near our head office. And last week (9-10th May), Leo Capella Communications Officer , Kirsty Mulvey Programme Officer and Daniel Ball coordinator for Get Yourself Active in Leicester went to Elevate at Excel for Get Yourself Active. Leo reflects on what he learned during his time at the event.

For experienced physical activity veterans Dan and Kirsty, Elevate was a chance to meet existing contacts including our partners from Activity Alliance and the University of Birmingham who were part of a panel on how to improve disability participation. For a rookie to the sports sector (i.e. me) it was a chance to explore the wider world of physical activity and sports for the first time in greater depth with talks about the unleashing the potential of the sporting economy, Generation Z, as well as using behaviour change proving my highlights. For me the exhibition provided a useful insight into the physical activity sector.

On the first day of Elevate my highlight was getting a lesson in the scale of the challenge that there is to improve physical participation for people as a whole, after having previously reviewed the results from the most recent Active Lives Survey.  For instance, 2.6 million Londoners are inactive including disabled people and lower socio-economic groups.  Yet there are also positives, as a survey found that 7 out of 10 people with disabilities want to be more active.  So a point that came out from Elevate was that the focus has to be on removing barriers instead of building it and thinking that people will come, which has been the mindset of the physical activity sector in the past.

Getting people with disabilities in to the sector as trainers as well as other positions is something that our campaign has covered in the past. And this point was discussed in a number of talks that I went to. For instance, as part of unleashing the power of the purple pound and making the business case for including people with disabilities along with other hard to reach groups.

Having said that, for all the positivity when we looked for physical activity apparatus that could be used by people with disabilities that was openly advertised not much was on display. However there was an Alter G Treadmill on display (which can be used for people with disabilities) and I also found other apparatus that could be adapted to people with disabilities for instance a climbing type frame could be adapted.

All in an all I had a positive informative time at the exhibition and maybe next year Get Yourself Active will either have a stand at Elevate or be part of a panel discussion alongside our partners. Hopefully by then more people with disabilities will be doing more physical activity and be paid members of the industry. However it was clear from the conference that getting more people with disabilities in physical activity won’t happen overnight.

In other news: Why do we at Get Yourself Active do what we do? Here are some reasons why our campaign exists…

Activity Alliance seeks a new Chair

Thursday 17 May 2018

Since its founding in 1998 as the English Federation of Disability Sport, Activity Alliance has become the go-to organisation for information about disabled people’s engagement with sport and active recreation. Now, an exciting opportunity exists to become Chair of Activity Alliance and lead the organisation into a new era of innovation and growth.

For the last 20 years English Federation of Disability Sport, now Activity Alliance has been an integral part of the sport and activity landscape and promoted the interests of disabled people in sport and recreation.

Under the current Chair, Charles Reed, the charity has been at the forefront of supporting disabled people to be active for life by enabling organisations to support disabled individuals to be and stay active.

The organisation has increased its annual operating budget from £1m to £3m in the past five years, established a vibrant new corporate identity, and exceeded Code for Sports Governance requirements. The charity has major ambitions for significant growth.

Activity Alliance is now seeking to appoint a new Chair that embodies the charity’s vision – Disabled people are active for life – to lead the organisation through an exciting period of development and growth.

The Chair will be:

  • A connector, providing the link between the Board and the Executive, giving leadership and support to the Executive and the Leadership Team in the delivery of the strategic plan.
  • A team leader, providing leadership and direction to the Board enabling them to fulfil their responsibilities for the overall governance and strategic direction of Activity Alliance.
  • An ambassador, working with the Executive, to raise the external profile of Activity Alliance with relevant partners and bodies and increase their role and influence.

 

How to apply 

Activity Alliance has partnered with SRi, the leading executive search and consulting firm to support them in their search for a new Chair.

For more information about this role and details on how to apply, please visit the SRi website.

Closing date for applications is Friday 1 June 2018.

Download Activity Alliance Chair candidate pack.

Activity Alliance are very proud of their work in diversity and inclusion and encourage applications from disabled people and those with lived experience of disability.

Find out more about the charity’s work on Activity Alliance website www.activityalliance.org.uk.

In other news: Activity Alliance are what’s known as a National Disability Sports Organisation (NDSO) but what does that term actually mean? Look at our glossary and find out! 

Kirklevington Riding Centre Encourages More Disabled People To Take To The Saddle

Tuesday 15 May 2018

A North Yorkshire equestrian centre is hoping to welcome more disabled riders to take to the saddle, after signing up to a national scheme.

Kirklevington Riding Centre, based in Yarm, has become an Accessibility Mark accredited centre after meeting the criteria set out by the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA).

The RDA, in partnership with the British Equestrian Federation (BEF), launched the revolutionary Accessibility Mark scheme to work with commercial riding centres with the aim of getting more disabled people to participate in riding.

A British Horse Society (BHS) approved centre, Kirklevington has been established for 38 years, providing riding lessons to two generations, from total beginners to riders looking to work towards a qualification.

The centre recognised an increase in demand from disabled riders, particularly those with autism.

Horse riding has many benefits for people on the autistic spectrum, including improved concentration and social interaction, learning to attend to their horse rather than reacting to the sounds and stimuli in a strange environment and adapting to changes of routine.

Jen Brooks, Chief Instructor at the centre said: “We applied for Accessibility Mark status for the benefit of the riders that were already regularly attending for lessons, and we hope that the accreditation will give new clients confidence in our abilities to meet their needs.

“All of our instructors found the training with the Accessibility Support Officer (ASO) extremely useful, reinforcing the strategies we were implementing during lessons and introducing new ideas to make lessons more engaging and ensure good practice.”

The new accreditation comes hot on the heels of the centre also becoming a BHS Training and Exam centre, further developing its expansion of services.

An Autism Awareness Charity Show recently held by the centre raised £350 and plans are underway to hold a similar fundraising Open Afternoon on Tuesday, May 29 between 1pm and 4pm.

During the Open Afternoon the centre will be promoting the RDA Qualifications that many of their riders are already working towards, as well as offering taster riding and grooming sessions.

Booking is not required, and all proceeds will be donated to The National Autistic Society.

Accessibility Mark status is awarded to a riding centre that has been approved by the RDA following training and assessment. The close link with the RDA means that it can offer continuous support to the establishment to ensure it provides a first-class experience that aims to be hugely beneficial.

For further information contact Kirklevington Riding Centre on (01642) 791 027 or visit www.kirklevingtonridingcentre.co.uk

There are currently 48 Accessibility Mark-approved centres across the country.

To find your nearest RDA Group or Accessibility Mark centre visit www.rda.org.uk

In other news: For more information on how you can get active in your local area please look at this web page.

Wheels for All Black Country inclusive cycling tryout day

Friday 11 May 2018

Wheels for All are pleased to announce there will be a try out day at Aldersley Stadium on Wednesday 6th June 2018

 

Come and enjoy inclusive cycling activities for all the family
regardless of ability. Try out a wide range of adapted cycles at Aldersley Stadium.

Come along as a group or an individual – all welcome.
Help bring regular inclusive cycling to Wolverhampton.

When and where

Date: Wednesday 6th June 10am TO 4:30pm

Venue: Aldersley Stadium, Wolverhampton, WV6 9NW

Further details please contact Ian Tierney on 01925 234213
or email on ian.tierney@cycling.org.uk

In other news London vi sport and physical activity day

 

London VI Sport and Physical Activity Day

Friday 11 May 2018

FREE sports taster event in London for people with a visual impairment

Come along and enjoy an action packed inclusive day of tennis, zumba, football, goalball, climbing, cricket, gymnastics and much more!

This event is open to anyone with a visual impairment aged 8 and over, including friends and family ,sports fanatics or people just getting started. It’s fun for all ages, with a different activity timetables for children and adults on the day as well as gentle activities for those who want to take a slower pace.

The event organised by British Blind Sport, London Vision, Illuminate Fitness, the Royal Society for Blind Children and London Sport  will take place at Westway Sports Centre, London on Saturday 7th July 2018 from 10.30am to 4pm.

When and Where

Date: Saturday 7th July, 10.30am to 4pm

Venue: Westway Sports Centre, London W10 6RP

 Get Involved!

For further details please contact Alex Pitts, Participation Officer on telephone:  07929 356428 or email alex@britishblindsport.org.uk

Register online for the London VI Sport and Physical Activity Day

In other news Goalball uk unches national schools- competition programme

 

 

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