As the eyes of the world turned to London for the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games, 400 young sports stars of the future experienced 18 different sports at the Belfast City Council ‘Try It Community Sports Day’ in Ormeau Park.
In addition to mainstream sports, children got to experience indoor rowing and the challenge of BMX as well as the Sport Northern Ireland Activ8 Olympic Challenge high wire obstacle course.
Activ8 is an Olympic Inspire Mark programme which encourages children and young people to do 60 minutes of physical activity every day and to eat a balanced diet, and uses eight simple steps to stay active and keep healthy. The Olympic Challenge brings core physical activity to life with young people balancing on the wooden bridge, climbing a cargo rope and crossing the rope bridge.
All the sports were delivered by Sport Northern Ireland Active Communities coaches £13.5 million of Sport Northern Ireland Lottery funding has been invested into the Active Communities programme in Northern Ireland allowing every local council area to encourage more people to get involved in sport and physical activity.
Chair of Sport Northern Ireland Dominic Walsh said, “We have 20 Olympians in London, about to compete in their chosen sports as well as volunteers and officials playing their part in London. We’ve hosted many international Olympic teams here at venues across Northern Ireland and we have delivered successful participation programmes such as Activ8 and Active Communities. These programmes are designed to ensure we capitalise on the excitement and inspiration of the Games and continue to increase participation in sport and physical activity.”