It's been awhile since I last updated about the boys taking part in the Walney Wind Cheetah Cubs group. I thought I would do that now that the beginners programme has technically finished with many of the cubs having taken part in the Walney Fun Run at the end of June.
I'm very pleased to say that both Sam and William were 2 of the 3 cubs who attended every single session of the programme. After the Walney Fun Run there was a little prize ceremony whereby those who had run regularly and taken part in the fun run received a certificate and reward from their run leaders. Because of their young age both boys received family swimming passes for our leisure centre so that will be great for this summer!
The boys are still attending Cubs and will do so throughout the summer as the group is continuing to meet for the next few months. They absolutely love it and it means getting us all out of the house for a couple evenings a week in the sunshine (hopefully!) and fresh air.
Have the boys benefited from Cubs? Yes I would definitely say so and in different ways, some of which are not just about improving their running (although both their recent parkrun PB's and performance at the Walney Fun Run can attest to their increased fitness and training)!
For Sam, who has autism, the group has given him more opportunities for socialising , increased his confidence and has provided a brilliant sensory experience each evening. His difficulties have made no difference whatsoever to his inclusion in Cubs and I am constantly bowled over by the warmth and encouragement shown towards him. It's very hard to tell how much Sam comprehends but I do know that he loves being out with the Cubs by the giddy smile on his face most nights!
William has come on so much with his running considering he is still only 4. He often tells me how much he enjoys it. His confidence has also grown and he loves being part of a group. He is definitely getting the hang of all the stretches and likes helping to lead them at the end of each session. He can often tell you where you should be feeling the stretch and what you can do if you can't feel it! He loves the games section in the middle of each run session too, they are fun, keep his interest and motivation up and sharpen his listening skills!
I really hope that the boys keep up their running for years to come and I think that Cubs has given them a good start. William has already asked for his own running watch! Children as young as our boys don't often have this sort of chance to 'learn' running in a group so it's been a fabulous opportunity for them.
One of the other things Cubs teaches is PMA (positive mental attitude!) and William especially takes this away with him in other aspects of his life and to races we've signed up to. The boys have two races to take their Cubs skills to this summer, the Hospice at Home West Cumbria Colour Run (5km) at Muncaster Castle and a 1 mile fun run at the Ulverston Summer 10k. I am sure they will do the group proud!