Athletes at TASS accredited sites take a look at the Uni-athlete life. Part 2.

Some of the country’s rising young sports stars came together to find out what the next steps on the talent pathway could look like for them. Student-athletes and their Dual-Career Coordinators attended the event at Coventry University, giving the young athletes a taster of the support and facilities received by TASS athletes.

These athletes are currently studying at schools and colleges which have been recognised by TASS’s national Dual Career Accreditation Scheme, which assesses their commitment to support dual career athletes who are in full-time education. 

Following a welcome from TASS Head of Network Kirsty Field, the group of athletes and teachers were given a tour of Coventry Universities sports facilities. 

The dual-career athletes, who represent many sports between them, then joined workshops delivered by TASS practitioners. Whilst they learned more about support in Lifestyle, Psychology and Nutrition, the dual career coordinators joined together to discuss their roles and had the opportunity to share ideas and learn from each other’s experience and successes. 

The final part of the day brought it all to life, as athletes and co-ordinators had the opportunity to ask questions of Coventry University graduate Macauley Owen, who is now a professional boxer.  

The Dual Career day was a celebration of the scheme and the athletes who are supported. Kirsty Field, TASS Head of Network said:  

‘This was one of the first combined events that TASS has organised for athletes and coordinators from our FE TASS Dual Career sites, and it was great to facilitate a series of workshops for the athletes and best practice sharing sessions for the coordinators. All seemed to really enjoy the day and the athletes definitely made the most of having sessions with our TASS network practitioners, asking questions and really engaging in the day. Via the athlete panel and University tour sections of the day, athletes were also able to get an insight into what University life as a student-athlete is really like, hopefully enabling them to start planning for their next steps.’ 

The Dual Career Coordinators welcomed the opportunity to meet their counterparts from other schools and colleges and to share best practice. Steve Wilkinson, from Loughborough College commented: 

‘The event proved a very successful day for both staff and students. We had a mix of sports and a mix of A-level and BTEC students who got to attend 3 workshops supporting their athletic development. They also had the opportunity to meet other athletes from a variety of colleges. As staff it was great to catch up and share knowledge, ideas and approaches that are specific to colleges, regions and athlete development. The feedback from everyone who attended was excellent.’

Athlete feedback was also positive. The student athletes enjoyed the tour of the Uni facilities and the range of information available in the workshops was appreciated. When asked about their favourite part of the day, answers were varied but included: 

‘The tour – gravity treadmill and environment chamber’ 

‘Psychology – needed to work on this for myself’ 

‘Nutrition part to find out the foods needed to boost mood’ 

‘Learning about balance and why it is important.’ 

‘Nutrition – helps me plan my future meals better’ 

‘Learning about a healthy lifestyle balance in further depth’ 

If you would like to learn more about the Dual Career Accreditation Scheme, please contact: Kirsty.Field@tass.gov.uk