In I W.O.N. project, an Italian sport Organization, a Lithuanian Sport University and the Sport Unit of a Portuguese Municipality works together to increase sport staff awareness on the importance of a balanced and adapted training programme that protects young athletes from long-last injuries.
If on one hand it is true that regular participation in sports generates physical, psychological and social benefits, on the other hand the engagement in physical activitiy also causes risk for injuries. About one in five injuries treated at emergency department in hospital is related to sport activities, for the EU-27 region, the number of sports related injuries treated in hospitals can be estimated at 5.2 million cases a year. (EuroSafe, Policy Briefing "Promoting Safety in Sport: how to put actions in place”).
Negative consequences of musculoskeletal injuries sustained during sports may compromise function in later life, limiting the ability to experience pain-free mobility and engage in fitness-enhancing activity
For this reason,specific aim of the projectis to protect young athletes from health and safety hazards by improving training conditions,increasing sport staff awareness on the importance of a balanced and adapted training programme athletes centred.
Starting from a method tested in the Laboratory of Posture (Postulab) ofPalestra Ginnastica Ferrara, that pays special attention to structural and functional integrity of athletes from 3 to 16 years old, a group of coaches, instructors, professors and sport managers from 3 different European countries shares their experience and exchange best practices on innovative training methods, athletes centred.
As a product of the exchange of best practices will be realized a guideline with recommendations for coaches, instructors and sport staff.
The practical approach is given by 5 days of training that will be organized in Italy for coaches, instructors and sport managers involved in the project and by the creation of a mobileapplication that is the final main tool.
From the app, free to download, coaches and instructors can select diverse preferences (age, pathologies/symptomatologies, area of the body, harmful posture, etc ) and filter a tailored workout, direct to each athlete’s characteristics and based on specific fitness goal of functional re-education.
The app provides detailed suggestions through a step-by-step description with a short presentation and explanatory photos/images that show how to properly execute each exercise.
Young athletes will get great benefit from the spread of the I W.O.N. project results, in terms of better performance and above all of a general long-lasting well-being.
A. S. D. Palestra Ginnastica Ferrara - Palagym (PGF) is an Italian non-for-profit Association founded in 1879 in Ferrara (northern Italy) with the aim of promoting “the culture and the study of gymnastics”.
Since the early years of activity, PGF athletes have participated in National and international competitions and in several Olympics obtaining excellent results and many successes. Currently, the artistic gymnastic team is in second level (A2) in the national championship and other athletes (rhythmic gymnastic, judo, sanda and wushu) are internationally appreciated.
In 2004, PGF moved to the new premises: the Palagym. This is a new sport center of about 2.500 mq counting 6 gyms and additional areas providing purpose designed indoor spaces, accessible also to people with a wide range of disabilities.
Currently, PGF has got more than 1.200 members and offers a wide number of group excercise classes addressed to children and adult, from 3 to 80 years old in various disciplines as general, rhythmic and artistic gymnastic, japanes and chinese art martials (aikido, judo, wushu, sanda, etc), pilates, yoga, sliding, functional training, tacfit, weightlifting, postural training. Personal trainers also provide customized fitness routine.
Besides, the Modern School of dance “Louise Anne Gard” is specialized in modern dance for children and teen-agers.
Finally, particularly active and significant is the experience of Postulab (Laboratory of posture) that with its highly qualified staff and cooperation with the other instructors’ disciplines has obtanied excellent results.
PGF collaborates withlocal public authorities, Universities, schools and private Associations and it has a good experience in the organization of training and local events (National competitions, Gym day, annual display with about 2.000 spectators, “Gran Galà del CONI” in cooperation with the Municipality of Ferrara), as well as of awareness campaing in the schools and in summer camps (“Olympic Gym Camps”).
Specific attention is dedicated to disabled persons; PGF organizes weekly classes in order to promote disable communication skills, socialization and consolidation of motor patterns.
PGF is member of the following sports Federations: Federazione ginnastica d’Italia, (F.G.I.), Federazione Italiana judo, lotta, karate, arti marziali (Fijlkam), Federazione italiana Wushu Kung fu (Fiwuk) and Federpesistica (FIPE), as well as of Comitato Olimpico Nazionale Italiano (CONI).
PFG is inspired by the ethic principles of sport, promoting in all its activities the “culture of sport” combining in a single approach the well-being and enjoyment with fair play as a way of thinking that includes respect for others, inclusion, equal opportunities, fight against any kind of violence.
PGF is the coordinator of the project I W.O.N, its role is to lead the project team, supervise project activities at local and international level and monitor progress and performance.
The project proposal is split into 5 Work Packages (WP) with specific objectives, activites and outcomes.
The WPs are the following:
WP1: project management - lead partner: Palestra Ginnastica Ferrara
WP2: quality control - lead partner: Lithuanian Sport University
WP3: dissemination - lead partner: Mirandela Municipality
WP4: exchange of best practice - lead partner: Lithuanian Sport University
WP5: training days - lead partner: Palestra Ginnastica Ferrara
WP1 - project management
Two levels of management will be implemented, an overall management and a Work Package (WP) management.The overall management is the responsibility of the Management Board, which consists of managers of each WP, coordinated by PGF as general coordinator and Applicant of the project.
WP2 - quality control
The WP aims to ensure the quality of project processes and products and its coherence with the objectives, measuring the effectiveness and efficiency of actions, the impact of project results and the project contribution to the overall Erasmus + objectives, allowing to take preventive actions.
To support these actions, the project partners will be asked to deliver self-evaluation report and questionnaire on specific actions carried out by them or regarding the project in general.
Aim of WP3 is to raise awareness about the project activities, inform the community about the results and finally promote the project results in order to transfer the know-how and methods to other stakeholders.
At the beginning of the project a dissemination plan will be drawn up to define communication strategy as well as channels, tools and integrated methods of communication are shared in order to reach the largest number for each target group, optimizing the available resources.
WP4 - exchange of best practices
Aim of this WP is to have a comparison on fitness methodologies used in specific grassroot sport for athletes from 3 to 16 years old both agonistic and amateur.
Coaches, instructors, sport manager and professors from PGF, Mirandela and LSU will meet to share experience and opinion and then identify recommendations useful to sport staff in order to prevent long-lasting injuries in young athletes. Starting point will be the method Postulab, tested by PGF on which the other partner’s expert will identify weaknesses and strengths in order to further improve it thanks to their experiences.
Guidelines will be published online on project and partner websites.
WP5 - training course
A training of 5 days will be held in Ferrara (Italy) where coaches/instructors/sport staff from Mirandela and Kaunas will join the Italian staff. During the training daysthere will be the presentation of the most interesting successful cases, the observation of classes and personal training based onPostulab method, debate on techniques observed, identification of first excercises to be uploaded on the app.
Partners willcreate a mobile application, with practical example of exercises and training useful to coaches for athletes centred training programme.
Thanks to a research banner, coaches and instructor can select diverse preferences (as age, health disease/pathology, area of the body, harmful posture, etc), and filter a tailored workout, based on athlete’s characteristics and specific fitness goal of functional re-education.