Yesterday we held a Powerchair Athlete Day at Sobell leisure Centre in Islington. 12 students from 2 schools attended the competition which incorporated the sports of Boccia, the newly designed Grand Prix slalom and Powerchair Hockey. Each student had the opportunity to try the 3 different activities before taking part in team races at the end of the day.
This was the first time Panathlon have worked with the Powerchair Hockey team from the Greenbank Academy in Merseyside who brought down 6 specially made powerchairs. Each chair had an aluminium cage around the outside of it to allow chairs to bump in to each other for tackles. On the back of the chair was a canister of compressed air which allowed students to press a button which subsequently shoot the hockey ball out from the front of their chair.
It was a really great introduction to a few of the sports that can be specially adapted for powerchairs and we hope to continue this work in to the next academic year. Many thanks to Pete Wyman from Greenbank in Merseyside for providing the equipment and introducing us all to a new sport!
Some feedback – “I’ve had a really great day thank you. Powerchair hockey was really fun although it was quite scary to begin with. The chairs we used were extremely fast compared to mine and it was great to be able to shoot the ball out the front of the chair” (Shorif, a student at Westminster College)
“Thanks for a really fun day. Powerchair hockey was something new for me and although at the beginning I found it a bit scary with the bumping in to each other, I loved it by the end!” (Ellie, student at Richard Cloudesley School.)
A big thank you to the Jack Petchey Foundation for providing the funding for this opportunity.