With the launch of the Children’s Coaching Collaborative’s Play Their Way initiative earlier this year, sports journalist Blake Richardson paid our Academy a visit to see how a child-first coaching approach is applied in Fight for Peace’s Twilight sessions.

Twilight sessions are led by Kenny Udenwoke and his team of coaches, and are open to everyone aged 7-14. They are many young people’s first entry to the world of combat sports and combine boxing with personal development, and fitness-based fun activities like dodgeball.

Coach Kenny is an advocate of a child-first approach to coaching children boxing, which means his participants have a pivotal role in their own boxing education and the design of sessions and activities.

“I would say that is the most important thing for any boxing coach to understand: that children and young people’s holistic development should always come above their boxing development,” says Kenny.

“Children and young people who come along to our sessions learn to take ownership and develop drive and discipline, and our coaching methodology means that they don’t even realise they are developing those skills.”

Child-first coaching aims to ensure that more children and young people enjoy being active, and lead happier and healthier lives. It’s a central tenet of Play their Way, a movement of coaches, organisations and people working to champion every child’s voice, choice and journey in sport and physical activity. 

The campaign is funded by Sport England and The National Lottery and is led by the 17 partner organisations that make up the Children’s Coaching Collaborative.

Kenny’s Twilight sessions are highlighted in a feature length article, written for the Play Their Way website as a shining example of child-first coaching. The article can be read here in full, and an accompanying video can be seen below:

Twilight sessions at Fight for Peace happen every Monday and Friday at 4pm. The sessions are always keen to welcome new members and parents and carers can sign their child up online here. And during July and August a special Summer Programme will be running at Fight for Peace, full details of which are available here:

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