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Jubilee jubilation – Tricks and turns at William Parker Sports College

7 June 2012

Following on in the series of our Jubilee People’s Millions winners where we are looking at how the winning projects are benefiting from winning up to £60,000, we look at how the new specialist tumbling equipment at William Parker Sports College is giving the children a safe place to practice.

James, a Year 10 student at William Parker Sports College, joined the Free Running Club at the Hastings Rebound Zone earlier this year. Before that he had been trampolining at Summerfields, the local leisure centre in Hastings. Free running is a form of urban acrobatics where the city and rural landscapes are used to perform tricks and stunts through its structures. It is commonly practiced at gymnasiums and in urban areas that are cluttered with obstacles.

One of James’ friends, who is a free runner, showed him a few tricks which James thought looked really good and would be fun to try it out. He had a go in the garden and at skate parks, but said he didn’t feel safe trying out moves like backflips, somersaults and gainers.

James said “When Hastings Rebound Zone opened at William Parker, and we were given the chance to join the Free Running club, I put my name down quickly and joined the group.

I learnt lots of things, especially the importance of warming up to avoid injuring my legs and ankles.

My technique has got better; my jumping and height rotation has improved and I am more confident to try out new things like the backflip 360 and double front flip 180. The new tumble track in the Rebound Zone is really springy, so when I practiced it gave me more height and the new foam pit gave me a soft landing.

We have the best facilities in the area now and we have great coaches. It’s amazing how it can make you more confident when you know you’re in safe hands in a safe place. It’s made me more confident and let me try more tricks and stunts.

This term’s sessions have finished and, although I am back practising on the trampoline, I am less likely to get hurt now that I have been taught how to do it properly.

I’ve had lots of fun and a good time, I’m really keen to take it up again, and I can’t wait for there to be more spaces available.”

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