Inspiring Young People To Be Active

Date: 23 June 2023   Author: Energise Me

The Hampshire School Games took place on Thursday 22nd June with 1300 pupils attending from 120 schools across Hampshire and Isle of Wight.

The sun shone down across Winchester Sport and Leisure Park yesterday, allowing young people from 13 districts to try new activities and be active.

Previously, the games had had a competitive element. Since the launch of the We Can Be Active strategy across Hampshire and Isle of Wight, Energise Me have re-evaluated this. Now, it is a day to celebrate what our bodies can do and find fun in movement.

Our children thoroughly enjoyed their day, and all loved accessing the activities at their level. Regardless of abilities all felt and were fully included and clearly were 'loving life' which was just perfect to see.

Teacher at Lanesend Primary School

Why do we do this?

The latest active lives data for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight shows that over half of our young people are not active enough. 52% are not meeting the guidelines for young people between the ages of 5 and 18 which recommend an average of 60 minutes of moderate activity a day.

We invited schools to bring children who typically do not engage with out of school sports and activity clubs. The games is a safe environment for children to try new things and expand their understanding of what it means to be active.

Mr Collins from Tower Hill Primary School, loved bringing his pupils to an inclusive festival filled with opportunities that they wouldn’t have done before. He said, “the children were apprehensive to start. Some of the children we brought haven’t been involved in sports before, and have really grown into it as the day has gone on. I’m very proud of them, they’ve tried their best and kept going. The kids have had a really positive experience.”

A child celebrating a successful climb, while another prepares to go!

It's a big day

Over 40 activities were hosted throughout the day including opportunities that re-imagine what it means to be active. These include circus skills, playing on inflatables and African drumming. There was also the chance to participate in traditional sports like athletics, tennis and climbing.

This year, we even introduced activities such as treasure hunting and orienteering. Encouraging children to think creatively about what movement looks and feels like. There is a place for everyone in physical activity, even when it seems like there isn’t.

Juggling Jim teaching pupils circus skills.

Leaving a legacy

Throughout the day, we heard many stories about growing confidence among children. For example, one participant didn’t want to take part in cricket. After successfully bowling, a smile appeared on her face which stayed with her for the rest of the session. At the end, she high fived the coach. This is just one example of the impact that the school games can have on young people that we know of.

Our Head of Children and Young People, Sharon Robertson, has been involved in organising the games for 22 years. She has seen its lasting legacy, “We get great feedback from the teachers following the event. Getting to the top of a climbing wall can give a confidence boost that’s far reaching. It extends beyond the day and back into the classroom, with increased self-belief in all areas of their school life.”

My favourite was dodgeball because I'd never tried it before and it was so fun!

Anonymous pupil

A big thanks to

Without the activity providers and volunteers who join us for the day, this event would not be possible. This year we were supported by over 200 volunteers, including students from local colleges and national sporting bodies. So a huge thank you to everyone who worked through the heat to create such a memorable and joyous experience for the children.

The event is organised annually by Energise Me, in collaboration with Hampshire School Games organisers. The event is funded by National Lottery funding through Sport England.

Hampshire School Games Physical Activity Festival

Join us on Thursday 20 June for physical activity festival fun!

Hampshire School Games Week

A chance to celebrate PE, School Sport and Physical Activity.

People of all ages outdoors litter picking

We Can Be Active Strategy

We play a strategic role in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

Our Partners

Helping us tackle inactivity to boost health and happiness

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