Keeping it simple

Last week at the Scottish Women in Sport Conference I was lucky to have the opportunity to hear Elaine Wyllie speak, the headteacher who created the innovative ‘Daily Mile’, that many of you will be familiar with.

During her presentation Elaine asked the audience to think of something they enjoyed doing as children. 

For me, it was playing hide and seek with a group of children in my estate. When I think about it I can still remember the adrenalin rush of trying to get back to den (usually a lamppost) before you were found, and even better if you managed to ‘free’ the others that had already been caught!

Elaine then asked us four questions:

  1. Was the activity indoors?
  2. Were you alone?
  3. Did it involve equipment?
  4. Were there adults ordering you about?

I think you can imagine the answers! 

Why does the Daily Mile work? Because it ticks all the above boxes that make things fun for children.  It is a simple way of introducing physical activity and removes all barriers (or perceived barriers) to participation. The children can run or walk with their friends, there is no cost, no required kit or equipment needed and they are outside in all weather. 

Sometimes it is good to get back to basics and not to over complicate things.  So as we approach the summer holidays dust down those trainers, head outside to throw or kick a ball, have a race along the beach or in the park and remember you are never too old to join in a game of hide and seek!


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