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Olympic Judo comes to Garioch

British Olympians Chris Sherrington, Sally Conway and James Austin take part in a lively Question and Answer Session at the Garioch Sports Centre last Sunday.

British Olympians Chris Sherrington, Sally Conway and James Austin take part in a lively Question and Answer Session at the Garioch Sports Centre last Sunday.

As a legacy from this years Olympics, Judo Scotland are staging three “Meet the Olympians “ events with the purpose of inspiring the next generation of Judo players. The second of these was held at Garioch Sports Centre last Sunday (November 11) where nearly a hundred youngsters from eight different clubs ranging from Aberdeen to Inverness gathered to spend the afternoon immersed in Judo.

For over three hours on Sunday the youngsters spent time with GB Olympians Chris Sherrington, Sally Conway and James Austin. Each of the Olympians spent twenty minutes demonstrating some of their favoured throws or techniques and their tips and tricks.

The youngsters then had the opportunity to try these out on each other and some had a go at tussling with the Olympians. After the various exercises and practical sessions the Olympians sat down and answered dozens of questions from the youngsters, everything from what size and age they were when they started to what they had for breakfast and what time they got up in the morning.

The Olympians answered every question and sent out a positive message that achievement came through hard work, dedication and determination. A sizeable audience of parents and friends were there to see the afternoons events and they enjoyed it almost as much as the youngsters.

The youngsters then had the opportunity to try these out on each other and some had a go at tussling with the Olympians. After the various exercises and practical sessions the Olympians sat down and answered dozens of questions from the youngsters, everything from what size and age they were when they started to what they had for breakfast and what time they got up in the morning.

The Olympians answered every question and sent out a positive message that achievement came through hard work, dedication and determination. A sizeable audience of parents and friends were there to see the afternoons events and they enjoyed it almost as much as the youngsters.

Many of the comments were around the fact of seeing the Olympians “put something back into the sport” and most were impressed with the technical demonstrations, the way in which they engaged with the youngsters in a positive manner and their willingness to answer all their questions and take time to make each individual seem important.

Sally Conway said after the event “We have loved being here today and, like Edinburgh a fortnight ago, the enthusiasm of the youngsters has been tremendous.

“All three of us had a fantastic time at London 2012 and we really do want to do all we can to help others get the the chance to have a similar experience at a future games.”

North East Performance Coach and the man in charge at Garioch Judo, Stuart McWatt, said “This was a fantastic day for young Judo enthusiasts from all over the North and North East.

“Judo Scotland has staged a very professional and inspirational event which will serve the sport well for years to come and its great that they have seen fit to come to the Garioch and perhaps speaks volumes about the state of the sport in this part of the country.

“Its intended to increase the access to Judo around Aberdeenshire with new clubs getting started in January next year at Alford Community Centre and Mintlaw Academy.”

 
 
 

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