Thursday 28th September was the annual Going for Gold conference for GSA schools to encourage girls in sport. Beyond enhancing their talent in a variety of sport this conference focused on the excitement in the growing strength of girls sport and our girls being the vehicle for social change.
Our day started with a keynote talk from Olympic gold medallist Helen Glover who spoke of her journey into rowing - starting at 21 by standing on her tiptoes to reach the height criteria for the Sporting Giants programme. Her passion for girls sport and the dedication to sport was evident and inspiring throughout.
We then moved into our individual sessions, throughout the day the girls participated in cricket, hockey, rowing, tennis, netball, football and a psychology lecture. All students also had the opportunity to attend a sports fair and a nutrition lecture which they all thoroughly enjoyed and sparked lots of conversation. In addition to this the staff had a G&T workshop sharing ideas with other schools and the Youth Sports Trust about how best to support our best athletes at school.
The psychology lecture built on developing the student’s confidence and understanding of the need for failure in order to succeed. The route to success is not straight or easy but is full of setbacks, mishaps and mental difficulties; developing these skills is key to success.
The sporting workshops hosted world famous names from Helen Glover to Frank Lampard who were able to share their expertise, coaching tips and experience with the girls enriching their understanding and passion of the sport.
At the end of the days the girls were given the opportunity for a Q and A session where thought provoking, challenging and interesting questions were asked from our girls and the floor to the famous sports stars. These included, Gillian Lindsay, Crista Cullen, Graham Thorpe, Frank Lampard and Karen Pickering. The repeated message from all was don't give up, it takes a lot of work and failure is part of success - key messages that the girls took away from the day.