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Swimming stars prove a splash hit with Great Yarmouth children

Amy Smith tells her swimming story to the pupils.
Picture: Anthony Carroll

Amy Smith tells her swimming story to the pupils. Picture: Anthony Carroll

Archant

Two swimming stars have given an important fitness lesson to hundreds of pupils at a Great Yarmouth school.

Amy Smith and  Joe Roebuck spent the morning at Edward Worlledge Ormiston Academy.
Picture: Anthony Carroll Amy Smith and Joe Roebuck spent the morning at Edward Worlledge Ormiston Academy. Picture: Anthony Carroll

Olympian Amy Smith and Commonwealth swimmer Joe Roebuck spent the morning at Edward Worlledge Ormiston Academy.

The pair put all the pupils at the school through their paces during fitness training sessions and then Miss Smith gave a talk to all the pupils on her career.

The high profile visit was part of a tour of the region organised by Sports For Schools, which sees athletes inspiring children with their stories on overcoming challenges they faced and how they became top competitors.

Miss Smith, who took part in the London Olympics and has a silver Commonwealth medal, told the pupils how at the age of seven she could not even swim as she was “terrified” and “scared stiff” of the water.

Summer of Swimming logo. Picture: Archant Summer of Swimming logo. Picture: Archant

Due to her courage in tackling her fear, 11 years later she qualified for her first international meet - the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games - and she never looked back as she went on to compete at the very highest level.

After speaking to the pupils Amy and her partner also gave their backing to this paper’s Summer of Swimming campaign.

Mr Roebuck said: “Swimming is a very important sport. It is the only sport that can save people’s lives and get people fit at the same time.”

Miss Smith, whose top tip is enjoy what you do, added: “It is great to be able to talk to the pupils and hopefully inspire them. All sport and activity is important for children.”

Both athletes were pleased to see that the vast majority of pupils at the school could swim.

As part of the high profile visit, parents at the school are also being encouraged to sponsor their child to raise money for new PE equipment. There are prizes for anyone who raises between more than £5 and more than £30, including a Sport for Schools band signed by Miss Smith and an autographed poster.

Andrea Howes, PE instructor at the school, said the children had enjoyed the visit and that learning to swim was important as the school was “surrounded by the sea, river and the Broads”.

Anyone interested in the Sports for School scheme, which aims to inspire one million children, can visit its website at www.SportsForSchools.org

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