My four-year-old daughter, who is bright and generally happy, is large for her age and lacks physical agility. She attends a small Welsh country school which is excellent in most respects but is very old-fashioned in its approach to competition, especially at sports day. As a lumpy child who lacked confidence in her physical abilities, I suffered agonies in games and I fear my daughter is developing a similar horror of races. It wasn't until I was in my thirties that I discovered the pleasure of using my body, through aerobics, running and finally yoga.
I care very little about feeding national or county sports teams but a great deal about enabling a child to take joy in maintaining fitness, and I wish our village school would embrace the "personal development" approach that Chris Blackhurst dislikes. It doesn't matter a damn that country dancing wins no prizes if it teaches people the pleasure of taking exercise.