As part of Southampton's successful bid to host the 2007 Ultimate European Championships, the tournament organisers have launched an accredited coaching scheme to bring the sport to as many local school children as possible.
While many of the kids will have played 'frisbee' before, none had played Ultimate competitively.
|Ultimate at Chamberlayne Park School|
Members of Southampton's Ltd Release team have been visiting several local schools with drills and demos to explain the fast moving sport.
Tournament Director Andy Kayley said: "These kids absolutely love it, they're getting more and more into it and understanding it more. They can make the disc do what they want and throw it where they want."
With campaigns to fight childhood obesity and encourage exercise, Chamberlayne Park School's PE teacher Nick Park was keen to embrace anything that would get the students out and running around:
"We really like it, and we like giving the kids a variety of sports and they have really got into it. It's easy, it's simple and you don't need a lot of space and expensive equipment."
The schools element is one part of the European Championships which are taking place in Southampton during the summer.
The final of a local schools competition will be played as part of the championships.
The schools are also keen to encourage Ultimate's unique of the 'spirit of the game', a
philosophy that has no referees (or talking back to referees) and fair play.
As Nick Park explains: "Its self-regulating so there is no arguing with the ref like you see in football, so that attitude can transfer to other sports."
National teams from all over Europe will be coming to Southampton next year for the biggest event in the fast-growing sport's calendar.
Over 1,500 players from 20 countries will be battling for the eight titles, ranging from under 17s to masters, up for grabs at the University of Southampton Sports Ground at Wide Lane in Eastleigh.
It will be national teams in action this summer but local fans should have something to cheer about as Great Britain is one of Europe’s heavyweights in Ultimate.
Ltd Release's Emily Kingston is hoping to secure a place in Team GB and play for her country in front of a home crowd: "I'm so excited, it's a really brilliant opportunity to play with the best players in the country - I'd love to play down here in Southampton in front of my friends and family."
At the last European Ultimate Championships in 2003, held at Fontenay-Le-Comte, France, Team GB won three gold and two silver medals, appearing in all five finals.