The ActiveSG Athletics Club was launched with much fanfare over the weekend on the back of a slew of activities for people of all ages. One of the many activities was the Athletics Fiesta held over two days at the National Stadium.
Team Singapore's Marah Ishraf with Dow Chemicals team captain Amos Ong. Photo by Sport Singapore
The day’s events started off with the 2.4km Corporate Team Challenge Invitational. The invitational is a six person team relay with each member running a 400m leg. Our Team Singapore athletes were chosen at random to run in six of these teams.
One of these athletes was rugby flyhalf Marah Ishraf, whose team, Dow Chemicals, come in first in the invitational.
“It was great to get the opportunity to run here in the national stadium” said the national 15s and 7s player.
“In rugby we need a lot of speed, when we get the ball that extra five metres burst we get at the start is very important” he continued.
Marah’s team captain from Dow Chemicals Amos Ong said: “It (having Marah on the team) really makes a lot of difference, he gave us a bit of tips, a bit of confidence that we can actually try to do out best regardless of whether there is another athlete from the track and field team or 4x400m team.”
Team Singapore's Stephenie Chen with her team from SMRT. Photo by Sport Singapore
Stephenie Chen from canoeing also impressed her SMRT team captain Stephen Neo. He said: “Frankly when we got the draw of a canoeist I was a bit sceptical but after seeing her run I think with a bit of training she can beat any one of us.”
When asked about the benefits of athletics Stephenie replied: “It is a fundamental movement skill. It’s the basis of all movement and you need cardio for any sport you do, so running is a good way to build it up.”
Beside the corporate invitational our Team Singapore athletes also showed off some nifty footwork in the Nila Dance Fitness Parade.
Team Singapore athletes take part in the Nila Dance Parade with participants of all ages. Photo by Sport Singapore
“Anybody can take part and all are welcome to do this exercise” said Ahmad Yunus the Nila dance instructor after he took the participants from all walks of life on a rambunctious circuit of the national stadium joined by the ever cute and friendly Nila mascots.
Finally some of our Team Singapore alumni stayed behind after the dance parade at the various stations of the ActiveSG Athletics Challenge to encourage and give tips to participants and their parents.
The alumni, many of whom were top athletes in their heyday were also there to promote the upcoming Asian Masters Athletic Championships. One of them is Komathi Jayaraman.
“We are seniors so we participate in masters events. ActiveSG promotes sports among the young as well as the old so it’s a message that you never stop exercise it goes on with your life. To stay healthy and mentally active I think sports is very important” said the competitive race walker.
Another alumni is our masters sprinter Christina Tay who said: “I’m currently 51 and still very active. Never stopped once because it has become part of my life, so without athletics I’m not sure how life would be. We have a platform to showcase something that we love and we hope to share with the whole nation that you can be aging but you have to age actively and healthily that’s the most important!”
Watch the video to find out what you missed out at the Athletics Fiesta!