Water Polo Primary Schools Project

Water Polo Primary Schools Project

23 Apr 2018

Swim Ulster’s Water Polo Development Project is a hit with Belfast Primary Schools


A Swim Ulster Primary Schools Mini Water Polo Project, organised in partnership with BETTER (GLL), to help develop water polo in Belfast has been ongoing since early February and is partly funded by Belfast City Council’s Every Body Active 2020 scheme.

In preparation for the project, the Swim Ireland Education Team, along with Tutor Victor Kirk, developed a Mini Water Polo CPD, which was especially tailored to meet the needs of our Primary Schools Project.  The CPD, held at Falls Leisure Centre, was attended by BETTER (GLL) Swimming Teachers from Grove, Whiterock, Olympia and Falls Leisure Centres in preparation for a Mini Water Polo schools programme, held at these locations.  The mini polo lesson plan ran for four weeks during programmed school swimming time and was attended by 812 boys & girls from 24 local Primary Schools.

The project culminated in ‘Finale’ tournaments held at the four participating Belfast Leisure Centres with Champions emerging; St Marys PS (Grove), Victoria PS (Olympia), St Clare’s PS (Falls) and Our Lady Queen of Peace PS (Whiterock), all of whom proudly received their winners trophies and medals.  

Local water polo Clubs Cathal Brugha, Clonard, CĂș Chulainn and Diamonds were on hand to help out and were likely keeping a watchful eye on the emerging water polo talent. An important element of the project was for all children participating to be offered a complimentary taster session at local water polo Clubs.

As part of the Every Body Active funding package, Mini Water Polo equipment was provided at each Leisure Centre for use during and importantly, after the project.  Hopefully, we will see follow up mini water polo sessions being offered at Leisure Centres during future holiday schemes and/or simply as an alternative activity during schools aquatics term.

It is anticipated that the four winning schools will play off in a tournament to be arranged before end June to identify Belfast’s Champion Mini Water Polo Primary School and we are hoping to make arrangements to extend this project to other Ulster towns and Cities.

“This project has been a huge success, it was very encouraging to see so many young boys and girls engage in what was a very new sport to them and to thoroughly enjoy themselves in the process. Hopefully, local water polo Clubs will soon be welcoming some new members from this project” said Phil Kelly, Swim Ulster’s Water Polo Development Officer.

If your local pool is interested in participating in a future Primary Schools Mini Water Polo Project or if your Swimming Club would be keen to welcome some mini polo players on board then simply drop a line to Phil Kelly, our Water Polo Development Officer, at [email protected]

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