Over 600 schoolchildren in Montrose and the surrounding area will learn how to look after their hearts by participating in football-themed workshops thanks to a Healthy Heart Grant from national charity, Heart Research UK.
Links Park Community Trust has been awarded over £7,000 to deliver Heart Research UK’s healthy heart message to eight-year-old children through an innovative six week programme.
Starting at the beginning of the new school year, the project ‘Match Fit’, will use the appeal of sport – particularly focusing on football players and teams – to inspire youngsters to learn more about how the heart works, its importance and the long-term benefits of heart health.
The project will be implemented as part of the ‘Health and Wellbeing’ section of the curriculum by ten primary schools in and around Montrose.
The weekly sessions at each different school will be split into theory workshops, where they will discuss activity levels, healthy food choices and the different functions of the heart and 45 minutes of physical activity with the running theme of ‘pre-season training’.
Links Park Community Trust aims to intervene at a key stage in youngsters’ lives to support them to make positive choices at an age where the organisation see a sharp drop in participation.
Children will be empowered to become the ‘Family Fitness Coach’ in their household, acting as heart health ambassadors at home by suggesting family activities, healthy meals and quality rest and relaxation time.
Links Park Community Trust are planning to contact the children, through their parents, twelve months after the completion of the project to see if habits developed during ‘Match Fit’ have been maintained.
Peter Davidson, Links Park Community Trust Project Manager, said: “At Links Park Community Trust, we aim to develop and deliver programmes that address local identified need.
“We are delighted, that due to support from Heart Research UK, we are able to progress with plans for our ‘Match Fit’ initiative.”