HUNDREDS of pupils got to experience and enjoy the Paralympic sport Boccia, at a competition for schools run by Active Essex last week.
The competition at Mark Hall Sports Centre was designed to be inclusive so it could be enjoyed by all pupils regardless of ability. Boccia will also be featuring in the upcoming Rio 2016.
Purfleet Primary were the only representatives from Thurrock.
Active Essex invited John Willis, CEO of Power2Inspire to participate as part of his Road to Rio Challenge. A highly inspirational guest, John, was born without fully-formed arms or legs and is currently striving to complete his own Road to Rio challenge. You can follow his progress as he takes on top athletes in short challenge videos that will be posted on YouTube. John’s next challenge with Active Essex will be joining us at our Essex Winter School Games to try out as many sports as possible.
John Willis, CEO of Power2Inspire said: "It was great to play my first game of Boccia, as part of my #johnsroad2rio challenge. It is truly wonderful to play an inclusive sport on a level playing field, with enthusiastic youngsters who range from all types of ability. Clearly I need to practise more!"
Gary Sullivan said: “It’s great to be working in partnership with Power2Inspire and I look forward to their programme of truly inclusive events for schools in the lead up to the Rio Olympics. Sport has the power to change lives and we want it to be accessible to all.”
Boccia is a target ball sport similar in principle to bowls but is played indoors with soft leather balls. It is a sport of intriguing tactics, incredible skill and nail biting tension. It was designed for athletes with severe impairments but can be enjoyed by all as a truly inclusive sport.
Cllr Gooding said: “We are proud to be able to offer more inclusive sports to schools across Essex. John is a very inspirational man and we hope events like this will give every child the confidence to play and enjoy sport.”