The P.U.M.A. Squad entered it's first competition for almost two years. Our team consisted of 14 competitors (yellow belt to 2nd degree; and under 10 to over 50!), two coaches and a great collection of supporters and won 7 gold, 2 silver and 7 bronze medals!
Above those successes, what was really great to see was the competitive performances from everyone and the support given to each other throughout a very long day. Great signs on show to build into future competitions.
Sunday 3rd Oct started with a very early alarm clock for a few of us - Mrs Swain and I were on the road by 6am, others even earlier! With Mr Lammin overseas it was the first time we'd fully taken the reins of the squad at a competition, and after such a long break due to COVID I think everyone was a mix of nerves and excitement.
The competition had split itself into three chunks based on age/grade with staggered arrival times to limit people waiting around given possible COVID concerns. It was heartwarming to see PUMA competitors turning up early to support their teammates, something which lasted throughout the day (from around 9am to 7pm) with people moving from square to square to cheer each other on.
Regardless of match results or medals won the competition was a great way to blow away the cobwebs and test where the skills and reactions were after such a gap. Some people have really hit the ground running, and all have hopefully learned where to focus their efforts in the lead up to the next competition.
Thank you to parents and siblings who gave up their day to support everyone and take photo's/videos - we'll look at getting some of these shared on the P.U.M.A. Facebook Page. And congratulations to all those who entered the competition, that is often the hardest step.
Slightly surreal, it was great to be back in a sports hall catching up with lots of people from other areas and organisations and I'm already looking forward to the next one!
If you're interested in joining the P.U.M.A. Squad at future competitions the first step is getting along to squad training - the next session is 24th October!