Ultimate for Youths
Ultimate Frisbee has captured the interests of young players to High School and University level. It is apparent that there is a need to provide an alternative team sport to the mainstream sports that are currently available in schools. Mainstream, single sex and contact sports may not be the right sports for all children and teenagers. The key differences between Ultimate and the majority of mainstream sports are the focus on mixed-gender teams and self-refereeing.
Emphasising mixed-gender teams re-enforces the idea that both genders receive equal opportunity, and helps to dispel pre-conceptions of the abilities of different sexes in different sports. Self-refereeing is a key concept of Ultimate, teaching players to accept responsibility, resolve conflict and encouraging honesty and fair-mindedness, which are qualities that can be transferred to real life situations. This gives the sport a more civilised basis, without sacrificing healthy competitiveness. In this way, Ultimate has social educational benefits as well as physical.
As Ultimate caters to a broad range of skills and physical capabilities, it also requires the teaching of new techniques (such as different types of throws). This has two important benefits; firstly, the idea that everyone, no matter their sporting history, will start on the same level. Each player has the opportunity to excel at a different skill or role within the game, meaning pupils that don’t normally get involved in physical sport will get moving around. If a pupil’s strength does not lie in running / jumping, they can excel through catching and throwing skills, or by teamwork and strategic thinking.
The second benefit is for the new coaches – where players may have previously dropped out of sport due to the lack of opportunities for advancement, they will instead have the opportunity to gain valuable experience teaching a range of skills to the pupils, and will have the opportunity to ‘give back’ to the community after benefiting from involvement in Gauteng Ultimate through their degrees.
Current Youth Programmes
The GFDA has run volunteer projects in the past – mostly through outreach projects in Soweto and Orange Farm. We hosted our first official High Schools Tournament in September 2016 and support the annual Soweto Inter-Schools Ultimate Tournament which launched in 2015. Many young players participate in the weekly Gauteng league, or in the larger tournaments such as Binnelanders or Rocktober.
This project hopes to establish a link between Gauteng Ultimate and local schools, and would pave the way for numerous future projects which get young people involved in playing Ultimate, and newly qualified coaches building valuable experience.
We aim to grow the Ultimate community through a variety of projects in the coming years, aimed at people of all ages. These projects will generate many opportunities for players in the Gauteng Ultimate community. For the coaches, there will be many more volunteering and paid coaching opportunities to gain valuable experience. For players, there is great opportunity for sporting achievement – most Ultimate players learn the sport at University, so by learning throughout their time at school they have a significant advantage when it comes to competing at a club level or even for South African national teams.
With Ultimate’s recognition from the International Olympic Committee (IOC), building a youth program now can realistically result in players from Gauteng representing South Africa at the Olympic Games within a decade.
How can my school get involved?
Book a FREE TASTER SESSION and we will send a qualified ultimate coach to your school for a 90 minute introductory class covering the rules, field advancement, throwing, catching, scoring and SOTG (Spirit Of The Game).
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
What happens after a taster session?
Find out about our annual and school term events, such as once-off tournaments, introductory tournaments and district leagues.
After a taster session, schools have the choice of either:
- Say, No thank you this is not for us.
- Purchase our GFDA accredited 16 week coaching manual and start ultimate at your school.
- Send a staff member for GFDA level 1 coaching workshop.
- Hire a qualified coach to join your sporting staff as a once a week ultimate coach.
- Become an Ultimate School and incorporate ultimate into your school culture and classrooms. Ultimate standards and practises fit well with school subjects such as, life orientation, life sciences and physical education.