Students with a talent for athletics can train with Olympic and Team Great Britain athletes at a five-day sports camp over the half-term break.
Taking place at the well-equipped Nad Al Sheba (NAS) Sports Complex, the Great Britain Athletics Academy offers elite level athletics coaching to inspire aspiring athletes to take part in track and field races.
The elite athlete ethos starts at the top, as company director Umar Hameed competed at the 2018 World Indoor Championships. He says: “There is lots of talent in the UAE and its important that it’s nurtured correctly, as the kids of today are the Olympic champions of tomorrow.”
Making sure they get there are best of friends at work but rivals on the track – six international sports men and women who will coach students, including Team GB 100 metre sprinter Tommy Ramdhan and Irish 200m sprinter Leon Reid.
Get to know the coaches
Leon Reid is a quadruple champion track and field sprinter who’s won both indoor and outdoor titles. Ranked 18th fastest man in the world, the 24-year-old was a bronze medal winner at the Commonwealth Games and made it to the finals of the European Championship in the 200m sprint.
Fellow coach Tommy Ramdhan has an illustrious record as a Team GB 100m sprinter. The London-based athlete went from volunteering at the 2012 Olympic games and carrying Usain Bolt’s kit to becoming one of the UK sport’s brightest prospects in the sport. Tommy has won national titles over consecutive years and is also a former European 200m champion, winning his age group in 2015.
Both Leon and Tommy have the qualifying standard for the next Olympics in Tokyo, so we could see them representing their countries in 2020.
Also on the coaching squad is multiple national champion and Team GB 100m hurdler Yasmin Miller. She has represented Great Britain at a World and European level, picking up medals along the way. She has also competed on the IAAF diamond league circuit, which is one of the most respected achievements in track and field athletics.
Joining them is Olympic bronze medalist Marilyn Okoro. The Team GB Olympian is one of the most decorated British 800m athletes in history, winning not only multiple British indoor and outdoor titles, but medals at the World Championships, European Championships, and Olympic Games.
They’re all part of Athletes In Schools, which employs more than 150 British athletes and delivers presentations and practical lessons to more than 400 schools every year. The British-based company has operated in the UAE for almost two years.
Parents can sign up kids up now to a youth academy for six to 12 year olds and a teen sprint squad for ages 13 to 18. Both take place 8.30am-2pm daily, from Sunday 21st – Thursday 25th October.
What: The Great Britain Athletics Academy.Where: NAS Sports Complex, off the E66, Nad Al Sheba. When: 8.30am-2pm daily from Sunday 21st-Thursday 25th October. Cost: The camp costs AED 1,200 for five days or AED 300 a day. Contact: Sign up here and find out more at www.athletesinschools.ae/athleticsacademy