Try it, enjoy it, and you could star like Sinbad
What inspires kids to get involved and improve in sport?
I think all children should be encouraged to try at least one sport when they are young.
Sport provides you with new skills, fitness, team work and self-confidence. Some people would go so far as to suggest that sport should be compulsory for children.
In all of the sport I play my mum and dad have encouraged me to try it, even if I didn't think I would like it, they tell me to have a go. Sometimes (despite thinking I would hate it), I have actually quite enjoyed it.
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When I am competing I can often hear my parents, teacher and team-mates encouraging me from the side lines. They encourage me to do my best.
Recently I was lucky enough to interview Gloucester Rugby player James Simpson-Daniel (or as the Shed prefer to call him, Sinbad).
He felt strongly that children should be actively encouraged to participate in any sport, as he was as a young child.
Not everyone can succeed to the level he has, however, that should not hold children back and the most important thing about sport is that you have fun.
Like myself, James had a lot of encouragement from his family. Often he just wanted to stay in and do nothing, like many children, including myself.
However he was encouraged to get out with the ball and throw it around – and as soon as he was there he would love it.
This must have paid off, considering all of his brothers have gone on to play rugby to a high level, with his younger brother making his debut AGAINST Gloucester (that must have been awkward!)
Sometimes children are inspired to do something because someone else has done it – a role model.
James suggested that the London 2012 Olympics must have had an impact on children, inspiring them to start a new sport. He recalls many people he considers to be role models to him from family members, coaches to players.
James first started playing for Gloucester 13 years ago (before I was even born)
During that time he has had ten caps for England, but unfortunately injury and illness has often got in the way of further England trials or games.
He says he has found it hard to cope with injury, particularly earlier in his career yet he never lets it knock him back. It is frustrating, but now he is older he is able to not let his frustration affect him off the pitch.
To play sport to a high level, commitment is required. Would you find this commitment hard? James says that at a young age you should not feel under pressure, but you should commit to it being fun and enjoying yourself.
He suggests listening hard, learning from others and trying every skill at least once.
I am inspired by many people around me in sport, school and home.
Encouraged to try everything, and enjoy everything I try. If I enjoy something I try to commit to improve by listening hard, and giving it a go …Why don't you also take Sinbad's advice and give something a go this weekend?
Thank you to James Simpson-Daniel and Adrienne Eley for allowing me to come down to Hartpury training ground, and to the rest of the team for making me feel welcome.