On Saturday 8 October, Windermere School students welcomed Great Britain and England hockey ace, David Ames, for a coaching masterclass.
Ames, who represented Team GB at the Rio Olympics, worked with children aged from eleven to eighteen, in two separate two-and-a-half hour coaching sessions on the school’s astro pitch. The morning session saw the younger students put through their paces, culminating in a number of small games, while the afternoon session gave some of the senior students the chance to improve their hockey skills, with particular focus on shooting.
This was Ames’ third visit to the school in four years, something which the Head of PE at the school, Dan Reid, hopes will continue.
Says Mr. Reid, “David’s initial visit came about as a result of a previous School Sports’ Captain knowing him and arranging a visit. I’ve stayed in touch with David ever since and when I umpired him at Bisham Abbey as part of the Team GB preparations for the Olympics, I asked if he’d be interested in coming back again. We’re thrilled he said yes!”
Windermere School student, Olly Thomas, who plays for the school’s U16 Hockey Team, was buzzing after the afternoon coaching session; “We had a fantastic day. It was great to experience the type of drills professional players experience on a daily basis in their training sessions. It was hard work, but well worth it. Hopefully our results will reflect the effort we’ve put in today.”
Mr. Reid added, “We feel very privileged to have been able to arrange this visit as Olympic athletes are in high demand, particularly so close to the end of the Rio Olympics. I was very pleased to be able to give the students the opportunity to take some guidance from such an experienced athlete, and every single one of them worked very hard for each of the sessions. Everyone certainly seemed to enjoy the day and commented on how quickly the time had passed. I am also very grateful to David for making the long journey up to visit us, and pass on his knowledge through a series of skills drills and small three and four-sided games.”