Barnaba Korir on why kids are the future of Kenyan athletics

© Barnaba Korir Facebook

ATHLETICS Barnaba Korir on why kids are the future of Kenyan athletics

Abigael Wafula • 09:29 - 13.02.2023

Korir said if the sport is to grow in the country, Athletics Kenya has to promote and scout for talent among young people considering they are the ones who will determine the future of the sport.

Athletics Kenya (AK) Youth and sub-committee chairman Barnaba Korir strongly believes kids’ athletics is the way to go as far as the future of the sport is concerned.

During the Sirikwa Classic-cross country held on February 4, the boys and girls (aged 6-14 years) 1km races kicked off the Gold label event and Korir says there is more to that than just curtain raising.

In a post on his Facebook page, Korir said: “While it may seem a simple curtain-raiser, kids’ athletics bears a lot of significance to the future of the sport in the country.”

Korir added that for Kenya to maintain its status as an athletics powerhouse, it is important to constantly scout for talent as early as possible. He observed that kids’ athletics provides AK with an opportunity to identify upcoming runners who have the potential to produce remarkable results going forward.

“Kids’ athletics provides Athletics Kenya (AK) and other scouts with an opportunity to identify budding runners who have the potential to become the next Eliud Kipchoge, Faith Chepng’etich, Kipchoge Keino, Ezekiel Kemboi, Paul Tergat and Ferdinand Omanyala, among other countless Kenyans who have done the country proud throughout our history,” Korir said.

Korir said competing on such a stage also provides the youngsters with a platform that motivates them to work harder towards becoming elite athletes in the future.

© Barnaba Korir Facebook

“The kids’ athletics also provides us with the opportunity to create awareness on the doping menace and how to avoid falling afoul of anti-doping rules. As a federation, we have consistently used local and international competitions on Kenyan soil to preach against doping and urge all athletes to train and run clean and win fair,” he added.

Korir also noted that the athletes are able to learn about the dangers of doping at an early age and grow in their respective careers with a negative perspective of this vice. He added that these competitions are able improve their physical, social and psychological development, which are the three key impacts of participating in sports activities.

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