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Olympian Heather inspires at elite sport launch

16 September 2016

Olympian Major Heather Stanning inspires at Army Elite Sports Programme expansion launch The British Army, UK Sport and the English Institute of Sport (EIS) are proud to announce the expansion of their partnership to include the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS).

This will give Army athletes the opportunity to achieve the very best from their sporting ability and provide a network of TASS Accredited Centres close to major Army garrisons and unit locations. This collaborative venture aims to uncover and develop more medal-winning British Olympians from within its ranks for Tokyo 2020 and beyond.

Major Heather Stanning delivered 'her story' on becoming an elite athlete and spoke about how the programme supported her in her efforts to achieve Olympic Gold. Key personnel from the partnership were also in attendance and provided Army Athletes with guidance, support and information on the advantages of the collaboration between the Army, UK Sport, the English Institute of Sport (EIS) and the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS).

Army Athletes participated in a practical strength and conditioning class delivered by Michael Knott, who thanks to a recent signing of a formal contract between the Army Sport Control Board and the EIS, now provides specialist strength and conditioning services for Army Athletes in Aldershot.

Sport is critically important to the morale, welfare and operational effectiveness of Army personnel. All soldiers who are keen to pursue a sporting interest can do so – whatever their ability.

'Fantastic opportunity'

Major General Shaun Burley CB MBE, Director Army Sport Control Board gave his firm backing to the initiative: “The Army has traditionally been a great source of top sporting talent but the Army Elite Sport Programme and our new targeted investment in world-class high performance athlete support programmes will take this up a level and help produce Olympic stars of the future," he said.

"The chance to represent Team GB at the Tokyo 2020 Games and beyond is a fantastic opportunity for our Army personnel. I am confident that our partnership with UK Sport, EIS and, more recently, TASS will provide us with the very best opportunity of producing potential Army Olympic medal-winning athletes to follow in the footsteps of Major Helen Stanning.”

Olympian Major Heather Stanning inspires at Army Elite Sports Programme expansion launch

The Army Elite Sport Programme (AESP), launched in October 2014, draws on the extensive experience developed by UK Sport, EIS and sporting National Governing Bodies in the areas of talent identification, athlete development and ultimately delivery of medal-winning athletes as evidenced from the unprecedented success at the recent Olympic Games in Rio.

The remarkable achievements of Double Olympic, World and European Rowing Champion Major Heather Stanning have brought sharply into focus what the Army can provide to Great Britain’s Olympic ambitions. Significantly, the recent signing of a formal contract between the Army Sport Control Board and the EIS to provide specialist strength and conditioning services for Army athletes in Aldershot is just the latest example of the targeted investment into supporting the Army’s rising sporting stars.

 

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