Learn the rules with online action
Activities, Games Concepts Warm Ups, Energizers Fun Fitness Games Pounds 39.95 each
Tel: 01631 720065
Each of these interactive DVDs is packed with imaginative ideas on how to add zest to you PE or sports classes, using equipment that you probably already have.
The first concentrates on games and concepts. This is a no-nonsense package and little effort has been put into frills or pretty pictures. The main menu gives you a range of options such as "cricket games" or "volleyball games". These take you to a sub-menu where live-action video clips provide a range of further options.
"Cricket games" gives you three variations on a cricketing theme - each can be used in the gym with a nice big soft ball so no one gets hurt.
The strength of the DVDs is that you can see clips of young people (the same squad in each clip) trying out the activities. Watching them play a game such as benchball (using a gym bench in a fast moving game of catch) makes it easy to follow the setup and rules. On the down side, the captions used to outline the key rules of each activity are a little too peremptory: you will need to use the pause button to catch key points.
Some of the catch-and-throw activities will be familiar to experienced PE teachers. However, there are lots of nicely graded variants of familiar sports: six-ball cricket, for instance, means that each batter faces six playable balls. She or he can be got out in the usual ways, but not sent back to the virtual pavilion. If you are caught or bowled, you just lose two runs. There are very clear shots of young people playing aspects of the game - key moves such as bowling actions are shown several times to ram home the technique required and occasionally there's a bit in slow motion or freeze frame.
The second DVD provides 55 warm-ups, energisers, fun and fitness games.
These include "foam boffer games" such as "boff and free", a type of tag game where players must squat down if hit below the knee with a foam bat.
Pool games include a "barge game", where the object is to push the barge (a large float) to the end of the pool.
Each clip is accompanied by a rather irritating sound track ranging from soft rock to wholly inappropriate 1970s-style funk. But this is a small caveat and you can't expect full Hollywood production values at the price.
If you want a cheap and cheerful set of good ideas to liven your gym and sports classes, these DVDs do what they say on the box.