SCHOOL pupils were left in awe after Team GB hockey gold medallist Alex Danson put them through their paces during an intensive training session.
The 31-year-old visited Meoncross School in Stubbington for the day, where she inspired pupils through some talks, the training session and showed off her shiny gold medal won in August, before signing autographs for the children.
It was great to hear about all the students’ own aspirations and share with them my experiences.Alex Danson, Team GB hockey gold medallist
Danson, from Southampton, netted five goals during the Rio 2016 Olympic games this summer as Team GB went on to win the gold medal for the first time after beating the Netherlands on penalties.
Alex said: ‘I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all the students from Meoncross.
‘I spent the morning talking about our experiences in Rio, met the nursery school and then spent the afternoon officially opening their new playing fields.
‘It was great to hear about all the students’ own aspirations and share with them my experiences.’
Headmistress Sarah Ebery said of the Olympian’s visit: ‘We were thrilled to welcome Alex to Meoncross.
‘It was wonderful for the children to meet a real Olympic gold medallist and to learn the important message that success does not come overnight.
‘It takes hard work, determination and the drive to keep on trying.
‘Alex is living proof that you should never give up on your dreams.’
Upper school pupils at Meoncross took part in the session as Alex gave them a small taste of her fitness programme while pupils in the lower school got a close look at her gold medal and the forward signed autographs for them.
Ellie Harding, a Year 10 pupil who plays for Weston Park Blades hockey team, said: ‘I could relate to what Alex was saying as there were strong similarities to my strength and conditioning.
‘It made me want to step up my game!’