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Athletics coach delivers ‘cross-country’ programs

Students enjoying the IAAF Nestlé Healthy Active Kids’ Athletics program

Image: students enjoying the IAAF Kids Athletics program

From Mount Eliza to Tallarook, students across Victoria are getting active, engaged and having fun with the Sporting Schools athletics program thanks to one very dedicated coach.

Athletics Australia coach, Yiota Carabourniotis, has travelled far and wide during Term 2 to deliver the Sporting Schools programs to students across Victoria. She delivered the athletics program across six different schools, to more than 730 students before, during and after school hours.

“The reason why I joined the Sporting Schools program is because I love athletics and I think that it is really important for children to be exposed to this sport from a young age,” Yiota said.

The main focus of the Athletics Australia program is on developing running, jumping and throwing skills that can be used in a lot of other sports too. Teaching them these fundamental skills will help them in the long term, regardless of whether they continue to do only athletics, or other sports as well,” she said.

IAAF Kids Athletics is a highly engaging program and is fully aligned with all relevant school curriculum competencies. It can be delivered in three skill levels to cover all age groups at primary school; beginner, intermediate, and advanced.

“Participation is very important, and kids learn a lot about teamwork in this program too,” Yiota said.

“I’ve been involved in athletics as an athlete for 11 years now, and I still love it! Working as a coach at a variety of different schools is great,” she said.

The program was very well-received at each of the six schools, particularly by the students who all said they really enjoyed the activities.

“They love the warm up games and the fact that they get to "compete" against their classmates. They are so competitive; even the preps!” Yiota said.

“They also said that it's great to get the chance to do different activities that aren't part of their normal Health & Physical Education classes. You could see that they thoroughly enjoyed all the running, jumping and throwing activities,” she said.

Sporting Schools is a $100 million Australian Government initiative to get more children playing more sport, before, during and after school. Want to run an Athletics program at your school? Check out all the details on the Athletics Australia page.