Marathon Kids Programme Fingal Focus on Fitness, Health & Running

November 25, 2016 0

MarathonKids in conjunction with Fingal County Council, Dublin City Council and SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon have taken action to get children active. The MarathonKids programme is a fun and enjoyable 8 week journey that involves students running the 26.2 miles. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) 2015 report, Ireland is set to become the most obese country in Europe by 2030 with 89% of all adults defined as obese or overweight. The MarathonKids initiative is looking to encourage fitness, educate young people on the benefits of sport and promote an increase in activity levels in the early teenage population.

The programme saw over 1,900 6th class pupils from twenty-nine Fingal schools participate, with children running 4-5 times per week in school, which led each student to complete a total of 25.2 miles (just one mile short of the Marathon distance), before completing the last mile at MarathonKids Final Mile Event in the National Sports Campus on November 20th. The MarathonKids programme is an educational and physical activity programme which supplements the school’s curriculum through a specially developed workbook, used as both a training guide and learning tool by pupils during school hours.

Niall Mc Guirk, Senior Sports Development Officer, Fingal County Council, is delighted with the outcomes from the programme, “Fingal are delighted with the impact the programme has made in our schools. We had 1,000 Fingal kids here out of 1,900 on a cold Sunday morning, which is a credit to the runners, their parents and their teachers. This programme has the potential to be in every school in the country. There is no cost to the school or the kids and both teachers and Principals’ agree it’s easy to implement and makes a huge impact regardless of the size of your school and the standard of your facilities. I would encourage all Councils and all Local Sports Partnerships to get the programme up and running in their areas!”

Speaking about the programme, James Hayden, a teacher in Balbriggan ETNS, one of the participating schools, said “The MarathonKids programme has shown to be a truly beneficial and enjoyable activity for both myself and our kids. It has highlighted the benefits of sport to us all and it has made such an impact on even the students who wouldn’t normally be overly interested in taking part in sporting activities. The programme fits in so well to the school curriculum and we have used the workbook for not just PE, but maths, English, history and even science.”

For further information on the MarathonKids Programme contact Niall Mc Guirk, Senior Sports Development Officer, or 087-120-6431

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