Leon helps make fitness fun at Leamington

Double Commonwealth Games gold medalist Leon Baptiste has been putting pupils at Leamington Primary School in Sutton-in-Ashfield pupils through their paces and showing them, and staff alike, that keeping fit can be fun.

Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 8:00 am
Updated Friday, 27th December 2019, 11:20 am
Former international sprinter Leon Baptiste and Leamington pupils try out some star jumps. Photo: Louise Brimble.
Former international sprinter Leon Baptiste and Leamington pupils try out some star jumps. Photo: Louise Brimble.

Retired from competing, sprinter Leon now inspires school children with Sports for Champions to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

He said, “I go into schools to deliver an inspirational message to promote a healthy and active lifestyle.

“It also raises aspirations as a lot of children will see athletes on TV and wonder how they achieved that role.

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“When I come into school and share my story, hopefully that will inspire them to aim high

“ I want them to be the best they can be whether that is in sport or anything else they wish.”

The Leamington pupils took part in a fun workshop doing a range of quick exercises

Leon continued:“These days children use a lot of gadgets and sometimes use them for hours every day.

“Hopefully we can inspire them to be more active and the teachers can carry the message on after I leave.

“That’s the hope from my visit, that children will enjoy a healthier, more active lifestyle.”

Six-year-old Elsie-Mae Marshall, who joined in the fun, said: “We have been doing star jumps with Leon.

“He is a fast runner and he has helped us to get fit. Its good for us and it’s a nice day when we can meet someone new in school.”

Oli Tatterson, PE specialist at the school, added: “It’s amazing to get such a high-profile athlete in to inspire the pupils, he’s a great role model.

“It has a huge impact on the aspirations of pupils, it raises the profile of sport, and the children have had a lot of fun whilst getting fit and exercising. It’s been brilliant.”

Oli added that the school has used the event to raise money through sponsorship for a new school minibus.

He said: “A lot of the staff have joined in and we have raised nearly £2,000 towards getting a minibus for the school and also supporting team GB athletes.

“Parents and carers and members of the community have been fantastic in supporting us and we want to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported us.”