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Coventry University Sports Scientists visits YFC Rurka Kalan in Punjab

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Youth Football Club, Rurka Kalan – A non-profit social organization working for the development of grassroots football in Punjab brought back sports scientists from Coventry University second year in a row to teach the kids the importance of physical fitness and to determine the health status of young players in the academy.

Sports scientists Amanda Nicola Miller, Bobby Hobbs and Cameron Hill spent two weeks  at the YFC academy who brought with them not only priceless experience of technology and know-how of the game, but also world renowned ‘Smart Speed’ technology to assess and determine factors like speed, agility, power and strength.

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They conducted a coaching workshop where 55 youth mentors and coaches from all over Punjab attended at Youth and Sports Complex, Rurka Kalan. The workshop gave a chance for coaches working with young children aged between 6-16 year old boys and girls at various football centres across Punjab to learn the basic fundamentals of being a good coach and how to deliver coaching sessions in the most efficient and productive manner.

The event on the first day started with 1 hour and 30 minutes classroom based workshop with Bobby Hobbs, 2nd year Coventry sports scientist who chose the topic of ‘How to be a good coach’ and stressed on the importance of preparing coaching sessions, time management, discipline and how to make fun oriented drills for the kids to keep them engaged throughout the session. This was followed by a practical coaching session for the attendees on the football ground to teach them what they learnt during the theoretical session.

On the second day, Recovery in football workshop was conducted by Amanda Nicola Miller, sports therapist and sports science teacher at Coventry University who focussed on different methods of recovery, sleep and rehydration techniques before, during and after the sessions, training and competitions.

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Cameron Hill, a qualified sports and exercise scientist and Bobby Hobbs took over the practical session in the evening to teach the coaches about fitness testing regards to football and introduced them to various fitness testing techniques such as 30 meter sprinting test to evaluate players maximum speed in 30 meters distance through the medium of SmartSpeed Light Gate System, Agility T-test to measure the agility of players, Jump height test, Grip test, measurement of height and weight to calculate Body mass index (BMI) and Skinfold measurements to measure each player’s fatness. Fitness testing of more than 200 children was conducted at Rurka Kalan, Kanha Dhesian and Bundala villages in the district of Jalandhar. The purpose of fitness testing was to determine the health status and physical fitness of young players in Youth academy.

On the last day of the workshop, Amanda Nicola Miller took the session of Nutrition and Bobby Hobbs explained the importance of proper warm up before the training, cooling down after the training, small sided games, tactical preparation, common formations used in football matches, individual roles of every player and how to change tactics when things go wrong.

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Youth Football Club President Mr. Gurmangal Dass mentioned, “It’s amazing to see so many local coaches from YFC Rurka Kalan wanting to learn and eager to improve their knowledge. There were some really good discussions and clearly some knowledgeable and enthusiastic coaches working in the grassroots football showed keen interest to further develop and promote the beautiful game.”

The sports scientists were thrilled with the turnout and interest. Amanda said, “It was fantastic to see the number of grassroots coaches interested in discussing coaching methods and philosophies.”

Cameron added, “It was a great opportunity to share in some of the work that we do at Coventry. The more we work together with local coaches in Punjab, the better it is for YFC and its associated community and most importantly young children who are passionate for football.”

Visit the YFC Rurka Kalan official website here.

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