By Alexander Longwell:
This weekend already marks the halfway point of my internship here in Swaziland. It has been an amazing journey so far with lots of memorable experiences. The start of this week has been the toughest for me, due to the long hours and amount of work we have had. I was given late notice that I would be presenting to a group of teachers everything I had been prepared for the Taiwan Games. It took me several cups of tea, snacks and staying up until 1 am the night before but I finished my PowerPoint and was ready for the teachers’ training session.
We arrived at the Olympafrica Centre (OAC) around 8:45 am and I spent the next hour and a bit preparing myself and the volunteers for the day’s activities, or at least the ones I was leading. My presentation started a few hours into the session and I was happy to get through it with no hiccups. The presentation was informing the teachers on who will be involved in the Taiwan Games, the programme for the day and what sports they will be playing.
Following my presentation we started demonstrations of the games and showed the teachers good ways to teach the sports to their children. This was the best part of the day as everyone had a blast playing the games and I got to work on my coaching skills. We started with a quick warm-up which included some dance activities and other fun games that are great for kids to do before playing any sport. We then did speed skipping, which is simply seeing how many times you can skip in 30 seconds. I was not very good at that one. Following this we set up a makeshift sitting volleyball net (two chairs, chalk lines and some rope) and I taught everyone how this game was played. The other games we taught included Frontball, which is similar to squash but you use your hands. There was also French cricket, an obstacle course relay and futbolnet. Futbolnet is a form of soccer where both teams make up the rules before playing and then evaluate themselves after the game ends.
It was a very fun day and it was great to get away from the office and do some hands on work. All the stress and frustration from the day before turned into satisfaction and relief knowing that all my hard work had paid off. Next on the list of things for the Taiwan Games is to visit the schools one at a time so that we can better educate the children about these sports.
That’s all for now!