FAMILIAR faces and newcomers of all ages got the chance to sample a variety of different sports at the latest Barrow AFC Community Sports camp at Furness College.

Along with football, those in attendance got to grips with tennis, hockey and a variety of other sports, learning the basic skills and then having the chance to apply them in games.

It was the first chance many of the younger children in attendance would have had to try sport in an organised environment, and coach Craig Rutherford was impressed with how quickly they picked up what was being shown to them.

“With it being a multi-sport week, we did a good variation of sports,” said Rutherford. “We look to do two to three different sports a day so it gets mixed up and then the children will work on skills and techniques needed to play those sports, then play some games of those sports.

“We mix it up during the day rather than just doing the same thing all day. Some children have done sports for the first time, especially those in Reception and Year 1 age groups.

“To come and pick up hockey sticks and things is quite exciting for them and it was great to see how they improved from when they first pick them up to the end of the day with the skills they had taken on board.”

For the younger attendees in particular, it was a good opportunity to learn skills which will prove useful in a variety of disciplines, which Rutherford was keen to emphasise.

“It's also showing them that a lot of the skills and techniques they use can be transferred over to other sports,” he said.

“We try to stress how important it is, especially at a younger age, to take up two or three different sports rather than just pigeon-hole yourself to one because the skill-set you learn in each one will help you further down the line when you start to choose that one sport as you get older.”

In total, 86 different children were registered for the camp, with the most in attendance on one day being 50.

And Rutherford was delighted to see so many young people taking part in different sports, particularly with so many other events on around the area.

“It's fantastic for us,” said Rutherford. “I know there are so many great things going on around the town; my daughter is on a gymnastics programme this week and there are other things going on, and for me it's just fantastic to see so many young children active.”