Humpty Doo junior bowls
In an endeavour to promote Lawn Bowls as a ‘Sport for Life’ Bowls NT and Bowls Australia are working together to take bowls into schools in the Northern Territory.
This promotion is part of an Australia wide approach supported by Bowls NT to introduce Lawn Bowls to a wider range of people of all ages within our community.
Humpty Doo Bowls Club in conjunction with Taminmin College took up the challenge and is currently running a program to introduce Year 7 PE students to bowls.
Coaches and volunteers from the Humpty Doo Bowls Club Carolyn Smolski and Nigel Simpson are working with Bowls Australia’s Regional Bowls Manager Colleen Orr to get a lawn bowling schools program up and running in Darwin.
Experienced Northern Territory state squad members, Warren Corowa and Rhys Kelly from Darwin and Nightcliff Bowls Clubs have given their support to this pilot program, which has seen over 150 year 7 students from Taminmin College participate during the three week program.
Taminmin College Physical Education Teacher Chris Armstrong says he was very impressed that all 40 students could fit on the green at once and the students were thoroughly enjoying their bowling experience.
“Students have expressed surprise at how much they enjoyed playing lawn bowls and can’t wait to come back for the next lesson”, Mr Armstrong said.
“Nigel Simpson has developed a fantastic intro format of half rink lawn bowls that enables up to 42 students to participate on the green all at the same time,” Mr Armstrong said.
As you can see in some of the photo’s below, the green was set up with 14 rinks running from the centre of the green toward the ditch in both directions; this meant that with three kids on each rink, 42 students could play with very little waiting.
Regional Bowls Manager Colleen Orr says in the coming weeks we will see some of these students participating in social bowls events held every week at their local bowling club and she hopes they enjoy the experience and continue with the sport.
“The year 7 lawn bowls program will be extended to include Marrara and St Johns schools later in the year, with a grand plan to see lawn bowls being part of the Interschool Sports Program in 2016,” Mrs Orr said.
Bowls NT Executive Officer Lee Farrell said this was the first step in Bowls NT’s plan to make lawn bowls a ‘Sport for Life’ in the Top End, irrespective of age.
“In an endeavour to reach more school students Bowls NT held an introduction to lawn bowls session on Friday March 27 at the Nightcliff Bowls Club for 27 trainee teachers from the Darwin University,” Mr Farrell said.
“Bowls NT will then run a Coaching Course for interested University students and local bowlers wishing to undertake a Level 1 Coaching course,” Mr Farrell said.
“These teachers will then be qualified coaches and will be utilised in assisting in the school Sport for Life programs at Marrara and St Johns.”
A growing number of coaches in the NT will create a pathway for young aspiring bowlers to represent the Northern Territory in the Australian U/18 Championships with a chance to one day represent Australia.
Schools and clubs wishing to become involved in the school program are encourage to contact Bowls NT or Regional Bowls Manager Colleen Orr on 0427 009 227.