didi sports to be piloted in educational settings and schools

The didi sport logo

Hinckley and Reading have been chosen as the first two areas for a pilot scheme which is set to see didi rugby provide an expanded offering to schools.

Starting in September, educational settings including nurseries and pre-schools will be able to book a didi sports session.

The didi sport logo

This will see classes receive a varied sports programme throughout each term which will include sports like: rugby, cricket, basketball and dodgeball.

didi rugby founder and CEO Vicky Macqueen said she had listened to numerous requests from schools for this sort of programme.

School or nursery

“The success of didi rugby over the past two years has put us in a strong position to develop didi sports sessions,” she said.

“My area of Hinckley and the amazing team in Reading are very excited to start delivering this.

“Every school or nursery which invites us in can be confident they will be getting a very high quality delivery from a didi sports class because of the reputation we have built up with didi rugby.

“That business has been built up around rugby because of my background as an international playing for England. But I am a qualified PE teacher, I have been head of sport at a high school and have also been in a sports co-ordinator role so a multi-skilled offering has always been on the radar.

“Schools and nurseries have told us that they like to mix their activities.” Vicky Macqueen

 

“Schools and nurseries have told us that they like to mix their activities so it fits in well with what we are going to pilot – and hopefully roll out across the UK over time.

“Our classes will encourage pace, variety and challenge throughout. Children will add to their physical literacy and we are always committed to promoting a multi-skilled approach to learning whatever sport we offer.”

Craig Hunter, co-owner of didi rugby Reading, said: “We are really excited to be working with Vicky to start offering didi sports across the Reading area as soon as it is safe to do so from September.

“As schools, including after schools clubs and leisure centres start to get going again after lockdown, it is important that the younger children in the 18 moths to 6-years-old age range are not forgotten.”

Outdoor venues

didi rugby classes are already back up and running in most franchise areas across the UK with safe and socially-distanced classes proving a huge success at outdoor venues.

didi cricket pilot schemes were successfully launched in the Cheltenham and Gloucestershire areas before the pandemic and will now be rolled out in at least six other areas across the UK from next month onwards.

The didi sports offering will be specifically aimed at educational settings for the time being.

Read more:  Book your child on for a free taster session at any of our venues across the UK

Watch: didi cricket classes in January saw the first expansion of the didi rugby offering 

didi rugby story time with Heather Fisher is proving a huge hit

England star Heather Fisher holds up a book called The Little Dinosaur

didi rugby ambassador and England Women’s international Heather Fisher is causing a storm every night.

One of women’s sports most recognisable figure has been hosting ‘didi rugby story time’ for the last two weeks to brighten up the days of many didi stars during the coronavirus lockdown of 2020.

It has come as no surprise to those who know her, that the amount of children and parents who have been watching her broadcasts live on didi’s Facebook channel, has grown day by day.

Heather’s energetic delivery and friendly face has attracted a dedicated bunch of fans who have loved being face-to-face with her every weekday evening at 6.00pm.

Not only has Heather been reading some of the nation’s favourite children’s books written over the past 10 years, she has also been teaching them some new physical skills and things to work on for the following evening.

“I am loving doing this collaboration with didi rugby,” says Heather. “The amount of people who are tuning in has grown every night and I am really enjoying having fun with our didi stars.”

Friend of Heather Fisher

didi rugby founder and CEO Vicky Macqueen is a long-time friend of Heather and she has been delighted with the reaction to ‘story time’.

“Heather has been amazing and has already built up a real rapport with the children and parents who are tuning in every night at 6.00pm. We are having lots of fun and the feedback we have been getting has been incredible!”

Growing in popularity with members and non-members too, ‘didi rugby story time’ is part of an amazing effort from didi rugby franchises across the UK who have been hosting classes and setting challenges online, instead of face-to-face throughout the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • WATCH this video below to see a full version of ‘story time with Heather Fisher’. Join us every weekday night LIVE on Facebook from 6.00pm.
  • Book your child onto didi rugby’s national online session every Monday from 11.00am during the UK’s COVID-19 lockdown here: https://bit.ly/2z2XjsL

Acti-Fit have become didi rugby’s official education partner

Acti-Fit director Ellis Bailey speaks at the didi rugby Conference

Acti-Fit have become didi rugby’s official education partner.

As a result, they will help to provide new coaches for didi rugby’s ever-growing class numbers and offer new and existing coaches the opportunity to gain a professional, chartered qualification on the job.

Based in the Midlands and driven by a host of passionate people, Acti-Fit are on a mission to push the boundaries of coaching by harnessing the power of sport and education.

With a team of experts, they provide 360 coaching consultancy, to support coaches with their educational development.

Acti-Fit director Ellis Bailey speaks at the didi rugby Conference
Acti-Fit director Ellis Bailey speaks at the didi rugby Conference

They embrace an ethos of getting people active and having fun through physical activity and it is an ethos which fits perfectly with the mantra that drives didi rugby and its classes for children up and down the country.

Through their knowledge and support networks, Acti-Fit will help provide didi with the right coaches at the right time for classes across the UK, in areas which are looking to expand.

This will provide not only more dedicated staff to support didi rugby’s ever-growing numbers of young members but will also allow those coaches to gain a professional qualification while doing so.

The Acti-Fit team promise to make those coaches become the best coach they can be and they will also give them the opportunity to become chartered in their respective field.

didi rugby founder and CEO Vicky Macqueen says she is delighted to confirm the partnership with Acti-Fit.

Personal development

“We have been chatting to them for a long time about having the same ethos, mentality and goals of getting kids active across the country,” she said. “It has been great to hear their ideas about making people better coaches and managers and putting them onto formal qualifications.

“We are always keen to make our didi coaches the best they can be with ongoing personal development.

“There will be a clear pathway to develop the children, their classes and the coaches who lead them.

“The partnership will also provide a clear pathway for didi coaches and franchise holders to develop and learn while they are on the job.”

didi rugby already teaches a framework which fits in with rugby’s governing body’s guidelines and with Vicky being one of only a handful of RFU Level 4 female coaches in the UK, youngsters who attend didi classes are always in safe hands.

Acti-Fit Partnership

“We are confident that the formal qualifications that Acti-Fit are adding to our coaching will stand us apart from other providers and ensure that customers get the very best from a session when they attend didi rugby with their children.

“It will be a very healthy partnership and it is exciting for me to be able to give our franchisees some great training which will, in turn, support them to support their loyal customers.

Ellis Bailey is a director at Acti-Fit and he says that he quickly realised there was lots of synergy between the two companies soon after meeting Vicky.

“When we set up Acti-Fit, we wanted to do something to make a difference,” said Ellis.

“Like didi rugby, we have a lot of things we feel passionately about like getting kids active and healthy and trying to better the quality of coaching in the UK through education.

Coaching pathway

“We were happy to start a didi franchise as part of the partnership too and we also wanted to offer franchise owners the opportunity to grow with an educational coaching pathway.

“Whenever we discuss going into a partnership with anyone, we want to invest in people and what I saw from didi rugby was a group of people with a genuine passion for what they believe in.

“It’s not a made-up story. It’s genuinely what they want to do. Vicky is a genuine person with a huge passion for sport and wanting to work for the community.

“Our partnership really is a match made in heaven.”

  • Watch: didi cricket delights school children in Gloucestershire…

 

 

didi rugby Sutton Coldfield to launch at Sutton Coldfield RFC

didi rugby Sutton Coldfield's logo

didi rugby Sutton Coldfield will be throwing a launch party to open its doors to the public on Saturday 29 February.

A friendly welcome is guaranteed at Sutton Coldfield Rugby Club and lots of fun and games will be taking place on the day.

Children from the age of 18 months to 6 years of age are welcome and parents are invited to book a place for their child by visiting the didi rugby website.

Regular classes will then begin at the same venue with three separate age groups: 18 months to 3 years, 3 years to 4 years and, finally, 4 years to 6 years.

Head coach of didi rugby Sutton Coldfield, Dave Lote has a huge passion for the sport having worked for the RFU and coached the sport for many years.

He also works for a company called Acti-fit who have just opened an exciting partnership with didi rugby to provide coaches and extended professional coaching qualifications to the men and women who deliver amazing classes up and down the country every week.

There’s more on that, later.

Exciting opportunity

“It’s a really exciting opportunity to get involved with didi rugby,” said Dave.

“We are launching our classes in Sutton Coldfield very soon and we want children to have fun and gain confidence while we deliver our sessions.

“These are exciting times for us.”

didi rugby founder and CEO Vicky Macqueen has known Dave for a long time and worked with him before.

“I am so pleased that didi rugby Sutton Coldfield is launching on February 29,” said Vicky.

“Dave was one of my fellow coaches when we coached at Lichfield together and I have worked alongside him in various roles as a rugby coach educator too.

didi rugby Sutton Coldfield

“I know he is the perfect person to support didi rugby’s progress and development in Sutton Coldfield.

“He is so passionate about rugby and getting children active and he has drive, enthusiasm and a really positive attitude. I cannot see a better person to take the Sutton Coldfield area by storm and do some really good work in the local community.

“And it’s great that the partnership with Sutton Coldfield Rugby Club offers a pipeline through to kids rugby when children become too old for didi rugby classes.”

didi rugby founder Vicky Macqueen becomes an RFU Level 4 coach

didi rugby CEO Vicky Macqueen smiling after becoming an RFU Level 4 coach

The founder and CEO of didi rugby, Vicky Macqueen, has become an RFU Level 4 coach after 18 months of study.

It means she is one of less than 10 women in the country to hold such a prestigious coaching position, which is designed and delivered by the game’s governing body, the Rugby Union.

She joins fellow Level 4-holders Wasps director of rugby Giselle Mather and soon-to-be Exeter Chiefs Women’s head coach, Susie Appleby, who is also a didi rugby franchise holder.

Although Vicky said she would like to get involved in similar high-level coaching one day, she said her 100% commitment at the moment was to the continued growth of didi rugby.

And she believes that large parts of the information she learned studying to become an RFU Level 4 coach will help grow and improve didi rugby in the future.

“It has been an amazing process with so much to learn and I feel really privileged to have completed it,” said Vicky. “It has taught me a lot in terms of rugby leadership but for didi rugby too because there is lots of coaching, management and psychology involved.

Level 4 coach

“There are so many aspects to achieving Level 4 and it has been a great educational experience for me.

“There is a massive overlap between business and sport and this has bought everything together for me to help enhance didi rugby.

“The growth of didi means I need to be 100% involved in the business and the mentoring of franchise holders at the minute. But I love coaching and being out on the field so taking on a role with a club in the future in definitely in my sights…if I get the time!

Vicky was approached by the RFU to join their coach educator team a couple of years ago and that is another string to her bow in terms of helping and mentoring coaches of the future.

RFU Framework

She was also inviting to consult on the RFU’s Early Years Framework – released earlier in 2019 – to help clubs focus in on the best ways to develop children’s interest in the sport from a very young age.

didi rugby plays an active part in helping clubs implement that framework and has developed formal links with clubs in England to create a natural pathway for children to keep playing the game when they graduate from didi rugby age groups.

With Vicky designing all of the programmes and care at didi rugby, parents can be assured that their kids are in very good hands and are being taught all of the right things if they come to a didi rugby class.

Book your child in for a free taster session at a didi rugby class around the country: https://didirugby.com/find-a-class/

WATCH MORE: didi rugby’s Vicky Macqueen was thrilled to be invited to consult on the RFU’s Early Years Framework programme

Please vote and help Rock Star Academy win top Amazon award

Matt Cropp describes Rock Star Academy to Amazon TV

There are only a few days left to help didi rugby director Matt Cropp win the Amazon Small Business of the Year Award.

And we are not afraid to admit that, here at didi rugby HQ, we need your help please!

As well as running didi rugby with Vicky Macqueen and other members of the didi HQ team, Matt owns Rock Star Academy – a business selling musical instruments and teaching people how to play through an online music school.

Many of those products are used by children and many of the values Matt’s business share, sit perfectly alongside the ones promoted by didi rugby.

Instruments encourage kids to come away from computerised devices and help them develop a hobby that tests their brains, physical agility and dexterity, to increase their enjoyment and confidence.

Matt is hugely passionate about what he does, encouraging people to play instruments and strongly advocating ethically-sourced wood for his products. In fact, all of Rock Star Academy’s products are built from wood that is replaced at source.

Amazon Award

Rock Star Academy has been a huge part of his life for a decade and winning the Amazon Award would be a huge achievement.

“Very much like watching children enjoy didi rugby, it’s great to see youngsters having fun and enjoying learning with a musical instrument,” said Matt. “Watching them smile as they progress is lovely to see and so is the confidence they build while doing so.

“You may not play a musical instrument, but I guarantee you have been moved or motivated by someone sharing the music they created,” said Matt.

“If you do play a musical instrument you will know the joy it creates when others hear you play and the hypnotic relaxation it provides when you are solely focused on playing it.

Rock Star Academy

“Music evokes a primeval response in all of us and I believe it’s fundamental to the existence of human culture.

Building a business that contributes to human culture with a positive impact on the environment is an absolute passion of mine.

didi rugby founder Vicky Macqueen said: “Matt is such a passionate person, always involving himself in community projects and giving back to support others so it would be great if you could take a minute out of your time to vote for him.”

Rock Star Academy has been shortlisted for the Amazon Small Business of the Year Award. To help lead Matt to success, log on to the link below and vote.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/small-business-of-the-year

Watch more: VIDEO – Matt Cropp describes how he set up didi rugby with Vicky Macqueen.