Youngsters get taste for squash

Leyland Lions mini-squash roadshow
Leyland Lions mini-squash roadshow
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Leyland Lions Junior Squash and Racketball Club held a mini-squash roadshow at New Longton All Saints C of E Primary School.

The event gave the youngsters an opportunity to try a sport that very few children experience while at primary school.

John Gibson, who used to work for England Squash – the governing body of the sport – and has a tennis and badminton coaching background, firmly believes that sport should be included in lessons in primary schools.

Since 2004, Gibson has held mini-squash roadshows across Lancashire in many primary schools, and he says the roadshow he held at New Longton was one of the best.

He said: “The children had never held a squash racket before, but so many showed tremendous ability.

“Mini-squash helps children improve their co-ordination skills, learn some great new skills, but most importantly, have lots of fun.

“Sport helps children make friends and helps them to learn how to accept winning – and losing – graciously.

“It may hopefully lead to a lifetime interest that will see them keeping fit. For me as a coach it’s essential our children learn those skills at primary school, as I believe it has a major part to play in the development of children, socially, physically and mentally.

“Squash is a top 10 ­priority sport in England, and mini-squash offers an ideal introduction for five to 11-year-olds to the sport.”

Jackie Hayes at the school said “The children loved the sessions.”

If you are interested in your child attending session at Leyland Leisure Centre, e-mail: john@squashcoach.fslife.co.uk, or ring 07970067703.