My daughter had already done football and I had heard about Leapfrogs before. A friends daughter did the Sunday morning classes and I had heard good things, so I was keen to see what they were like.
My daughter was just over three when we booked in for her taster session. She went into the Froglets sessions on a Thursday at 10.30 for three to three and half years olds. Leapfrogs also caters for two to three years and three and half to five years olds.
The big thing that attracted me too this class was the number of sports and activities they cover. Each week a different one is taught. From Dodgeball to Rugby and even Cricket.
Before the session starts, and waiting for others to arrive, the children get some free time to play with a ball. My daughter has just learnt to bounce a ball, like in basketball, from having a play around and trying things on her own. I was so chuffed. This is is my favourite sport.
As the children arrive they get a sticker with their name on it. This allows us to learn each other names but in a more informal way. I like this way but I also like the introduction way too.
Each session starts with a warm up. This involves running around cones and then standing behind one ready to do some stretches and mobility exercises like circling hips and arms.All I can say is my daughter just loves to run and is starting to experiment with some funny versions of the stretches which make me giggle. For me, this is vital knowledge for participating in sport, and starting to input this knowledge at an early age is a great idea.
The session is then moved on to fundamental skills needed for the sport being looked at each week.
Last week it was jumping, over cones and lines, as the focus sport was dodgeball.
In dodgeball, jumping to move out of the way is important so you don’t get hit with the ball. This was one of the sport based activity. I got to bounce the ball at my daughter!!!
As the film states there are 5 skills “dodge, dip, dive, duck and dodge.
Another example is Cricket. Throwing is important, so one skill was throwing the ball into different size targets. This then progressed to throwing the ball at stumps.
Dribbling practice in Hockey for example.
Once all the skills and concepts have been taught the children try to put them into a game. These are conditioned to make it easier for the children so they can start to understand the concept of what the sport involves. An example being smaller areas used to play or a similar version and the basic rules and smaller equipment.
The session ends with a cool down. These can vary. My daughters favourite is animals, where they pretend to be them and make the noises or movements. They stretch out without knowing. My daughter now does an mean Meerkat impression. By this I mean it’s brilliant. I think it gets their imaginations going. She loves doing it.
Another favourite is pirates.
Through out the sessions other little games can be played like Fox and Hound, which is when the children chase the instructors and take a bib, and also encouraging their imaginations by pretending to be animals.
The one thing to come across from the all the sessions is fun and they are suited to meet the age of the children. I also like the fact that the class sizes are smaller so the children get a lot more coaching out of it and more chances to try the skills, activities and games.
The range of equipment they have and use in the sessions is brilliant, and the activities and skills planned demonstrates how much thought and time has been put into them.
Using balloons to teach the basics of volleyball. Genius. I have now used this in my secondary school pe lessons, along with beach balls. I have taken some of the drills and adapted them to suit my students as they were good.
The thing that struck me most was the organisation of the sessions. Once one drill was completed Leapfrog was shouted and all the children had to go and touch the pictures in an area of the hall so the next activity could be set up, and if needed get a drink. I thought this was excellent.
The other was our instructor, Amanda. she is lovely, lively and engages well with the children. She is brilliant and always so welcoming.
The instructors. Amanda is on the right
Down to their level
One thing to come out of these sessions was my daughter showing a flare for cricket. She had never seen a bat, picked one up or swing one but picked it up very quickly. Maybe an England cricketer on our hands!!!
Would I recommend this class? Absolutely. The structure, the equipment used in each session, the instructors and how the sessions are planned all makes the experience worthwhile. I definitely think it is worth the money.
My daughter has got so much out of classes.
If you would like to find out more please visit leapfrogssport.co.uk or visit their Facebook page Leapfrogs Sports.
When my daughter learns a new skill or improves on the ones she can do I have a proud mummy moment and this time I get to spend with her is very precious to me.
After all it’s about making memories and cherishing every moment.