Longford Sports Partnership: Glenn Baskett's tips for staying active


In Week Four of the Longford Sports Partnership Staying Active & Healthy series, Glenn Baskett talks about staying fit, healthy and active during this period.


So tell us a little bit about yourself?
My name is Glenn Baskett, I’m from Rotorua, New Zealand and living in Newtownforbes, Longford. I’m married to Fiona and have 3 children, Niamh, Caoimhe and Kevin. Aged from 19 o 14. I am living here in Ireland 20 years, but was travelling before that and spent time in the UK where I met Fiona….and forgot to go home! I currently coach the Longford Senior Men’s Rugby team. I’ve previously coached at age grade level but am going into my 6th year with the senior men. I played various different sports in New Zealand, from rugby, cricket, athletics, basketball, volleyball, tennis. I have a huge interest in sport in general, love coaching it and watching it and a real interest in how sport is coached, and how people coach it. We were encouraged to not specialise early at one sport but choose a variety. I believe if you can play a variety of sports growing up it improves you as an all round sports person later in life when you do maybe specialise in one sport. For example someone that plays maybe soccer and GAA will find a crossover in skills that you wouldn’t get from just playing one sport the whole time.

Glen’s Favourite:
Favourite food (guilty pleasure) – Pavlova. Cakes are my downfall!!
Favourite food (healthy option) – My healthy option is a smoothie for lunch and grilled fish or prawns.
Favourite film – Anchorman or a good comedy. The Bourne movies.
Favourite book – I read a lot of sports biographies and sports coaching books.
Favourite music / musician – I have a wide range in this one. A bit of everything.

What are you doing to stay active during these times
I used to do a lot of athletics at school and have run 3 marathons, a few years ago though!! So I run in the mornings before work. Fiona is up and gone running before me, she’s my alarm clock!! The early morning run really wakes you up and gives you a good start to the day. You feel better for it. You wouldn’t feel the same without it. It gives me great time to think as well, no distractions. If I didn’t do it in the mornings I just wouldn’t get to do it as the nights are busy with training and planning and also getting the kids to their various trainings. But even in the middle of winter we should try to get out.

Top tips to stay connected:
We use Whattsapp and Hudl for rugby. Even though our season was cancelled early this would normally be our off season. But we still stay connected and send pre season self training the boys can do. I’m also on a few coaching groups on Whattsapp which link different sports coaches. Lots of emails etc. Not sure how good I am on Zoom as I was on a meeting the other night and spent the whole meeting with my camera off.

Top tips to stay fit and healthy:
Keep working at home on your own stuff. There are so many videos out there. But most importantly get out. It isn’t healthy mentally for young people to be isolated from friends. And stuck inside four walls. So get out and go for a run, it clears your head. If you’re looking to keep your baseline up from sport there are a lot of short intensity runs you can do that would be relevant to each sport. A big one we use is the Bronco, high intensity over a short distance. A great baseline measurer throughout the season.

Top tips for your mental health:
Have a good environment in your house. If that is right you have a good base. I also reckon if you surround yourself with good people you will succeed.
And from above, just get out of the house. People need to interact with other people, it isn’t good for us not to talk, and to meet different people is key. It isn’t healthy for young people not to be mixing and playing sport. If sport is lost for the year for young people it will be a shame for them. Sport is such a social thing for kids at younger years it is important they are playing. Just like school, virtual school does not work they need to have interaction.

What is the first thing you will do once the restrictions are lifted?
Go and watch a live game of anything!! And go out for a meal.

Anything else you would like to add in
This current situation with this virus will end. But until it does we have two choices shut society and sport down (which isn’t an option) or manage the risk. And if we manage the risk, which can be done, we can get things moving again in sport.
If you are coaching in sport make sure you spend time watching or going to your kids sport and interests they have. I know finding the time is difficult as in where I’m coaching spare hours are few! And you see the disappointment when you can’t make that event because you have a game, training or planning. So make time, even if it’s just to get to their training session, it matters.
As for how we coach sport we should be developing players to be able to play in as many different roles on the pitch as possible. Let them develop different skills through younger years, the wider the individual’s skill set the more rounded and bigger ability the player has. If we put a player in a box at 10 years of age we aren’t giving him or her a chance develop. Everyone develops at different times. For example do you want your defender to not be able to score a point or a goal if he finds himself in that position because he hasn’t practiced that skill, and we have said he’s a defender let him practice tackling only? Or in rugby not practicing basic skills across the team regardless of the number on the back. As coaches of age grade player’s it’s our job to develop the player.
And most importantly let kids just play, all they want to do is play sport. No one ever improved sitting on the bench, it isn’t easy when you are older and it’s results driven, but when the player is young let them play. You might find that athlete at 18 is better than they were at 10, and the good player at 10 has lost interest at 18 and gone from sport. As coaches it’s a balancing act between developing players and winning. But we need to focus on results at the right time. Coaches leave an impression on players for life.

The Longford Sports Partnership are very excited to announce that they have created a Stay Active Online Hub on our website , if anyone would like to look it up there are suitable activities and resources there for everyone from fun games and challenges to workouts and podcasts and it is being updated regularly with more information.

We are also putting up daily recommendations for everyone on their social media, Instagram:@longfordsportspartnership Facebook: longfordsportspartnership everyday at 11am.

Glenn is a firm supporter of the Longford Sports Partnership and has recently took part in our Workplace Wellness Day. If you would like to take up running like Glenn we are hosting a Morning Movers 0-3km training programme through zoom on Tuesday and Thursday at 7.30am, if anyone believes this is there time to take up running please text 089 2346530 for the link. Please see two of Glenn’s recommended exercises included.

We have a full body workout of exercises if anyone would like this just give us a call on 0433343493 or and we will send it out. With these exercises the aim is to complete 10 repetitions of each exercise at your own pace. Once you complete all exercises aim for 4 rounds of each. If you are finding it difficult you can decrease the number of reps to 8, if you would like more of a challenge increase the number of reps to 12. With any exercises remember stay within your comfort zone and don’t push yourself to complete any of the exercises and only complete these exercises if your health allows you to do so.

We hope you enjoyed Our Stay Active and Healthy Series, we have to say a big thank you to our ambassador who participated Madeline Bennett, Raymond Grehan, Gospel Idahor and Glenn Baskett and of course thank you to the Longford Leader for their continued supported. We have focused on older adults, people with disabilities, young people and adults. If anyone has any feedback we would love to hear from you. Mind Yourselves and Stay Active

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