January found us back in lockdown but keen to keep juniors engaged.
In order to do this, the SWAT( Scottish West Area Team) squad organised virtual coaching through a series of 5 online sessions. These ran over 5 Saturday mornings throughout February. Some 35 people including coaches signed up and kept coming back!
The sessions, headed up by Roger Goddard FVO, were structured so that we introduced the concept of systematic orienteering based around ideas shared during the BOF coaching conference. Plan, Direction, Picture and Distance.
We also had a weekly physical activity component led by Dawn Goddard FVO, ran a quiz then split into breakout groups according to levels ( orange , light green, green). Breakout groups allowed for more discussion and an opportunity to look at some practical examples of the element of systematic orienteering we had considered.
Feedback has been very positive and whilst no substitute for getting out there – it has given us a common language to use with the youngsters and we are now clearer about what the needs are.
As always, none of this would have been possible without the support and commitment from the team of volunteer coaches and the enthusiasm of the juniors and their parents. We are looking forward to being back putting skills into practice and taking part in the forthcoming Junior series.