Health - Cheers to body jamming

13th March 2009 at 00:00

Thousands of North Lanarkshire pupils have been getting in shape with dance and fitness classes.

The sessions, which include body jam and cheerleading, had 33,000 attendances at 18 schools during a six-month trial. The project was aimed mainly at girls, but some boys are also taking part.

The classes were taken by North Lanarkshire Leisure "community fitness motivators". They do not do the work of PE teachers but instead have introduced the young people, aged 12 to 16, to the type of gym-based fitness classes they can find after leaving school. "Physical education has moved away from traditional competition-orientated team sports towards a focus on health and wellness," said Christine Pollock, executive director of learning and leisure.

Melanie Menzies, North Lanarkshire leisure, health and fitness manager, said feedback had been "overwhelmingly positive". The project is continuing beyond its trial period and new instructors will be recruited. Classes take place during and after school.

The Pounds 125,000 trial was funded by North Lanarkshire Council.

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