Today we hear from Neil Bromley, President of Swindon Fencing Club and enthusiastic fencing coach, about his experience with the BF Achievement Awards.
In a recent interview, Neil shed light on the significance of the BF Achievement Awards and how these awards have made a positive difference for his club and the schools he’s been working with.
Neil emphasised three keywords that summarised the essence of the BF Achievement Awards: motivational, achievement and pride. These awards serve as a powerful motivational tool for youngsters, infusing a sense of purpose and growth in their personal development right from the beginning.
“When introducing fencing to primary schools, children always seem to be amazed at first, as fencing is not as widely known as other sports and therefore they might not have ever heard of it. But, when I start to explain how the sport involves poking friends in the tummy, parrying an incoming attack, and without realising how they will be immersed in a sword-fighting as in the saga of Star Wars, there’s this transformational expression on their faces and their eyes start shining brightly. Fencing offers children an opportunity to explore something entirely different, creating a sense of excitement and intrigue.
“By embracing these [BF Achievement] Awards, schools demonstrate their commitment to providing a versatile experience for their students, making it an attractive proposition from an educational standpoint, as children in school will gain substantial recognition for their dedication. Once they have achieved an award, they can’t have it taken away. Children or young members of fencing clubs – after earning their level one award and witnessing their own growth – are keener and feel more encouraged to excel further and to gain higher levels of awards.”
Neil witnesses that the collaboration between schools and local fencing clubs creates a seamless transition for children to continue their fencing journey beyond the school programme. This partnership fosters ongoing engagement and development in the sport, benefiting both the individuals and the educational institutions involved.
Neil’s club holds special presentation evenings, where parents are invited to witness their children receiving the awards. This creates an environment of celebration, where children are surrounded by their peers, proudly showcasing their accomplishments. It instils a tremendous sense of pride and achievement in both children and their parents as they witness tangible evidence of progress in their fencing skills.
“The BF Achievement Awards hold great value as they motivate children to start fencing, establishing children’s wider perception of the sport and creating a pathway for engagement and development in it.”
As fencing continues to be a unique and intriguing sport, these nationally-endorsed awards serve as a symbol of dedication and commitment.
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