The first Hoops 4 Health programme was first delivered during the 2000 – 2001 academic year, visiting 32 of the 57 primary schools in the city of Newcastle upon Tyne. The 32 schools were representative of the most deprived wards in Newcastle. During the course of the programme over 2,000 nine and ten year olds were treated to an afternoon of interactive health education with the larger than life role models from the club.
The programme had specific aims and objectives linked to the needs of partners. The key to the programme is in the utilisation of Eagles players to push forward a primary message of physical activity and eating healthily to stay alive.
Basketball is promoted as an easy way to keep fit and enjoy yourself. The initial work of the players then feeds into the work of the club’s basketball development scheme – giving children extended opportunities to play basketball.
Fourteen years later the 2014-15 academic year programme will see delivery across Tyne and Wear and Northumberland wide, an anticipated 120 primary schools across the six councils of Newcastle, Sunderland, Gateshead, North and South Tyneside and Northumberland are expected to benefit.
The following details the project aims, delivery mechanism and participation figures for 2013-14.
To provide a healthy living programme with professional sporting role models, using basketball as an activity to convey a range of positive health messages to young people in primary schools, including the importance of keeping physically active and eating healthy.
Nutrition and water, Smoking Cessation, The importance of keeping fit and its link to a healthy heart, Introduction to basketball as a healthy sporting activity
The Hoops for Health roadshow afternoon incorporates four themed sessions delivered by Eagles players. The afternoon of fun educational activity focuses on healthy eating, no smoking, fitness and learning to play basketball.
The aim of the station is to discuss the different food groups based around a balanced diet, highlighting the correct number of portions to consume daily. The station enables the young people to produce an eatwell plate showing the food types, what they provide your body with along with the portions per day for a healthy diet. The station then moves on to the importance of water and staying hydrated!
The aim of the station is to deliver information to the children with facts on the number of people and children smoking in the United Kingdom and the percentage that would like to stop. The players then compete in ‘who wants to breathe clean air’.
The aim of the station is to talk about the heart and what it’s function within the body is. The player then discusses with the children the importance of exercise and the children are encourage to suggest ways this can be done. The sessions ends with a fun fitness session.
An introduction to the game of basketball. The children are introduced to the chest pass, bounce pass, shooting technique and dribbling. An enjoyable and fun station with the emphasis on participating. .
Each school receives 4 hours of basketball coaching delivered by Eagles Community Foundation basketball coaches
Schools enter a tournament held at a local facility, tournaments on average host 300 participants in a one day competition.
Tournament semi – finals and finals are held at Eagles home venue, Northumbria University Sport Central, during pre game and half-time of an Eagles home game.
Claire McKinney, Head Teacher, St Michael R C Primary School
“The basketball guys were great, a wonderful opportunity for the children to question them, they gave much credibility to the advice, it really hit home. This is so important, particularly in our school where the messages are so mixed from home”.
Mrs McWilliams, Teacher, West Walker Primary School
“Thank you! Children who are normally reluctant to take part in exercise were totally involved and are now keen to learn more about basketball. The players were wonderful with the children – really good role models. The children are more likely to listen to the advice from sports people than just their own teachers. It was a huge success – the children have never stopped talking about it”.
Andrew Owen, St Josephs Junior School, Birtley, Gateshead
“I told my Dad about smoking and I told my Mam and she is trying to stop. I’ve got to say it was the best day ever I thank you for a great day, Newcastle Eagles you’re the best!”
Adam Ratcliffe, Cheviot Junior School, Newcastle
“I am very grateful and appreciate you bringing the Newcastle Eagles into our school. Because of that I am now going to Year 6 coaching.”
Amanda Inskip, Wallsend Jubilee Primary School, North Tyneside
“I would like it if I had a brother like Charles, he was always smiling and helped if we did a mistake … I had the best day and it encouraged me to play basketball”
Total number 253 teams and 2024 participants
Number of children participated within the programme road shows:
The Hoops for Health programme is specifically delivered to primary schools in Tyne and Wear at Years 5 and 6. The programme links to the continuing Eagles Community Foundation basketball development programme. Participants in the Hoops for Health scheme are offered the opportunity to attend a range of Under 12s clubs across the area.
These clubs are based in geographic locations close to the primary school and are the first step in a continuum to participate through teenage years and into later life. The following pages detail exit routes into a growing base of participation for the sport and routes for talent development in Tyne and Wear.
For an up to date list of all club sites and contact details go to Where To play on the Community page.
Eagles Community Foundation Central Venue League
All club sites participate in the weekly ECF Central Venue League. For more information on the CVL page.