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Sports star comes to Cobham Hall

Published Thursday 31st of May 2012 05:06:31 PM

Girls at Cobham Hall have benefited from the expertise of Commonwealth Games decathlon bronze medallist and Great Britain Olympic hopeful Martin Brockman as they get ready for the school's sports day in June.

Mr Brockman ran three athletics master classes covering sprinting, throwing and jumping events over the last few weeks, introducing girls to the more technical aspects of these events and giving them pointers to fine-tune their techniques. The final master class, focussing on high jump, was held near the end of May.

As a decathlete, Mr Brockman was an ideal choice to teach girls about a variety of athletic events with the decathlon encompassing track and field events from discus, to sprint and middle distance running, long jump and pole vault.

Mr Brockman said he fell into the highly diverse event as a result of participating in some of the more unusual events at his athletics club.

'I started off just doing a bit of high jump and a bit of pole vault and a bit of hurdles for my club because we didn't have anyone to do those events�as I got better I realised I could do the three hardest events so all I had to do was learn to throw and I could do decathlon,' he said.

Whilst training twice a day, six days a week, he still has the time and energy left to work with schools to build interest in athletics.

'I like just being able to encourage kids�.I got encouraged into athletics while I was at school by a PE teacher.

'The kids come in and I can do something a little bit different and they enjoy it and when you see kids enjoying themselves then it's worth it.'

And Cobham girls were no exception, it turned out.

'They're actually very good. They started off with a lot of new things they'd never done before�They got into it. They obviously enjoyed it and they improved as a result of that,' said Mr Brockman.

In addition to the athletics master classes, girls at the school in Cobham, near Gravesend, have been getting into the spirit of the Olympics with the help of a variety Olympic Taster sessions in sports outside of the PE curriculum.

Girls have enjoyed sessions in football, rugby, shooting and fencing throughout the first Summer Half Term.

Acting Head of PE, Mrs Sue Carney, organised the tasters to broaden the girls' experience in sport.

'Not only will it ensure that the girls are aware of the Olympics but it may just inspire some of them to take a sport further that they may never have considered had they not had the opportunity to have a go,' she said.
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