[Mercedes Brazier | Sports Sub Editor]
Active Students is a three year project with the aim to increase student participation in sport and physical activity as part of the Sports England Plan. UH was picked for the project due to our amazing sports facilities and we have had fantastic results so far, something we hope we can receive funding for to carry on.
Active Students was created for one reason – to see if it is possible to get students enthusiastic about exercise again, and to have fun whilst doing it. The aim is to provide free, fun and informal sessions for students, that are completely catch-free. When people hear about Active Students they keep expecting there to be a catch because it sounds a bit too good to be true, but it is genuinely just a win-win situation allowing everyone to participate in a wide range of sports and activities.
Students get to come and play sport and earn rewards for doing so, showing Sports England that it is possible to get students out of bed! With the increase in tuition fees, the recession, and student loans, a lot of students just don’t have the money to pay for gym memberships and sports clubs.
Student Activators are a team of 12 UH students who help deliver the sports to students as well as doing all the promotion work to raise awareness of the programme. They are the interface between the professionals and the officials of Sports England and the students who want to get involved. They are passionate about the brand, and if they can make other students passionate about it too then that’s great!
They market the idea to the student body and if they can convince people that Active Students is just as awesome as it is and get people enthusiastic about it then they are doing a good job! As Activators they get to talk to lots of new students, have ridiculous amounts of fun, play sports, and meet the most interesting people – It really is a rewarding job!
All of the coaches are professionally trained and qualified; they are paid by Sport England and are able to deliver the same quality sessions as they are trained to do for free!
There are around 50 sessions available to students. These are not like your boring P.E. sessions at school that you used to dread – fun is a huge element in the planning of the sessions. That’s why there are the classics like football, basketball, rugby and tennis, but also new exciting activities like Bollywood dancing and roller skating!
The most popular sessions are the classics sports, with some people put off from the outdoor ones once the weather takes a turn for the worst and it gets darker earlier. However, they have gotten around this by moving a lot of the sessions inside and hopefully as the weather warms up everyone will be eager to get back outside again!
You can check online at www.uhsport.co.uk for more information about sports at UH and the Active Students project.