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Athlete Leader, Jimmy Masina, assists with Floor Hockey Training

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Special Olympics Africa athlete leader, official, and staff member Mr. Jimmy Masina and Floor Hockey Coach, Ms. Bonita Bondesio went down to Kuruman, in the Northern Cape in South Africa to share their knowledge of floor hockey. Athletes and coaches from a number special schools in the Northern Cape assembled at Learamele Special School from the 17-18 May 2014 for the training. Floor hockey is a family of indoor hockey games, usually in the style of ice hockey, that are played on flat floor surfaces, such as a basketball court. As in other hockey codes, players on each team attempt to shoot a ball or puck into a goal using sticks, usually with a curved end. Floor hockey is a competition sport that is played during Special Olympics Winter World Games. The expert training was intensive and exposed athletes to both the theory and practical side of this very fast and energetic game. One of the athletes being trained shared the following: “Firstly I would like to thank Special Olympics South Africa for the opportunity they gave us and I am truly grateful. The training was good and it also gave us an opportunity to show our creativity.” Kedi Mabutlwane said she found the training interesting especially on the competition and divisioning side; ”Although this sporting code seems so challenging, especially for first time trainees everyone was eager to learn and participate.” Mr. Masina is a shining example of athlete leadership in action transfering skills to other athletes. Special Olympics athletes are the leaders of the movement. Through Special Olympics Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs), athletes explore opportunities in roles previously considered "nontraditional." Such participation might come in the form of an athlete serving on the Board of Directors or local organizing committee, or it might find an athlete as a spokesperson, team captain, coach or official. As an integral component of Special Olympics' dedication to empowerment and dign

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