CHAMPIONS throughout the history of sport rarely make it on their own; they’re supported by coaches, trainers and support staff that bring out their best – a philosophy embraced at Trinity College, Beenleigh, through its Talented Athletes Program.
High-profile sports nutritionist Sally Anderson, an advisor to many of Australia’s national sporting bodies and who works closely with many elite athletes, recently visited the college as part of TAP.
College sports leader Judy Bell said Ms Anderson’s message was all about eating right.
“(The seminar) was looking at making good choices so your body is fuelled, ready for training and games and recovery,” Ms Bell said.
“(It was about) making better choices for snack options, (and) busting some of the myths like they should all be buying protein powders and they all need to have sports drinks, that type of thing.
“Mainly giving them some better options to make in their general day-to-day food choices.”
Ms Anderson conducted a 90-minute seminar with about 300 students.
Ms Bell said proper nutrition had been a focus of Trinity College’s physical education curriculum and TAP.
The days of athletes rocking up to sports training with junk food was quickly coming to an end – despite the lingering power of advertising.
Ms Bell said a Diamonds netball player was recently at the college giving the same message.
“We’re all about trying to improve their knowledge because they don’t have that much,” she said.
“All they get is that constant bombardment of advertisements on TV, which is not steering them in the right direction.”
The crucial skill was reading labels, Ms Bell said.
Being able to tell what was good and what was bad allowed the students to bust through the power of advertising.
Ms Bell said Year 7 students undertook a PE unit where they learned to read the labels and what should and what shouldn’t be in products.
She said it was great to have role models coming to the college through TAP.
“The kids really enjoy it, and we try and have as many of them here as possible,” she said.
TAP was started in January 2018 and Ms Bell said it had been an unparalleled success.
“We’re very surprised that we’ve been so successful in such a short period of time,” she said.
“It worked out far better than I anticipated a year and a half ago – it’s good, it’s really good.
“Already, we’re getting inquiries from a lot of other schools wanting to work out how we’re running our model and what’s working and what’s not working.
“It has really been increasing enrolments at the school because we now have a lot of students coming here because of this Talented Athletes Program, and what we offer the students in the program.”
It was all geared towards development not just in sports but in life too.
“So we’re looking at sports that can offer some assistance to make our kids not only better athletes but better people as well,” Ms Bell said.
Ms Anderson will return to the college for another visit later in the year.