PUPILS, parents and staff at Coventry’s Eden Girls’ School have been getting into the Olympic spirit ahead of this year’s games in Tokyo.
They have set themselves a virtual challenge to collectively run, walk, hop, skip or jump the 9,522km distance from Coventry to Tokyo.
The challenge was launched in a bid to help the school’s community focus on achieving a more active lifestyle after months of lockdown had led to fewer opportunities for pupils to take part in sports and activities.
The school’s Tokyo challenge has even won the support of local former Olympian and middle and long distance runner, David Moorcroft OBE.
Mr Moorcroft is no stranger to the Olympics and represented Great Britain at the Montreal games in 1976, Moscow in 1980 and Los Angeles in 1984.
He also set a new world record for the 5,000m in 1982, and won two gold medals in the 5,000m at 1982’s Commonwealth Games and in the 1,500m at the 1978 Commonwealth Games.
Moorcroft has been spurring pupils on with their challenge by sharing words of support and encouragement through special videos that have been shown to pupils at Eden Girls’ School.
The school’s community has already completed 2,048km of the challenge, which currently places them in the Ukraine.
Caroline Amos-Wilkins, PE Teacher at Eden Girls’ School, Coventry, said there had been a great deal of enthusiasm for the task.
“We launched the programme because we are passionate about the Olympic Games and the values that they instil in others.
“We wanted to motivate students to do something different, have an end goal and be enthusiastic about getting active. One of the main aims of the challenge was to inspire families to get away from screens, and do something different during lockdown and beyond.
“Our pupils have really embraced it and it has been wonderful for them to work towards a collective end goal.”
Mr Moorcroft said it was a great way for pupils to work towards a common objective and to enjoy the benefits of a more active lifestyle.
“It is wonderful that Eden Girls’ School is actively seeking out new ways to inspire its pupils to engage in physical activity.
“This is an imaginative and fun way for the school to encourage pupils back into sport after what has been a turbulent time for many.
“I’ve really enjoyed hearing about pupils’ progress and their enthusiasm for this project has been truly inspiring.”