Sports and Physical

I am not generally very good at sports - my arms and legs are a bit shorter than they should be for the size of my torso. I guess I am well within the normal parameters, because I look OK and no one gives me funny looks or anything, but it makes sports difficult. Short legs mean I don't have a long stride length and that means its a bit more difficult to run fast, and short arms means that I don't have the reach for ball games or the leverage for throwing skills. I also not very good at practising :) and that has an even bigger effect on how well I do at sports.

However I have always enjoyed sports and games and, apart from the 10 years between the ages of 30 and 40, nearly always been involved in something active.

Up until I was about 25 Football (Soccer to you Americans) was my main sporting interest. I represented my junior school, played in a couple of pub teams and used to represent the village of Stubbington in local competition . I was generally the centre back and often played a sweeper's role, which was a fairly popular tactic back then.

I have played many sports and games on semi-regular basis. These include Rugby (Union and League), Cricket, Ten Pin Bowling, Fives, Table Football, Pool and Darts. I have played in pool and darts teams for a few local pubs - although I was always one of the last choices for the team (But hey, I WAS picked ) - and cricket for a company representative side. I even played rugby league a few times representing my college, university as it is now, but generally I was third reserve :)

In my early 20s I played a lot of badminton and some squash but the ratio changed, and by mylate20s I was playing more squash -but that was because I couldn't find a badminton club that suited me. My greatest achievement, was to come third in my badminton club pairs championship one year - actually my partner was a bit better than me and probably deserved more of the credit, but I still remember it with pride :).

Approaching my 40th birthday I decided to take up something active again, and picked on swimming. Not sure why, except that you can do it in most parts of the UK fairly easily and without belonging to a club. I am not a very good swimmer because I never learned how to synchronise by breathing properly with my arm movements. However, I am able to swim quite long distances, using sidestroke, when I am in practice. The longest distance I have swum, non-stop, is 2 kilometres, and I have decided that is plenty far enough for me - thank you.

I did used to be fairly competitive at shooting. As 16-17 year old I used to shoot small bore rifle for my school second team. In 1972, we won a national shooting competition and, although entry was restricted to second teams, I still have the medal on display. In the same year a friend and I won the regional scouting pairs competition, and I was awarded a silver spoon (which also still resides in my small trophy cabinet). Actually we cleaned up that year as my colleagues took first and second prizes in the fours competition as well.

Later in life I took up full bore pistol shooting with a club in south London, we occasionally shot against other clubs but we held our own internal competition annually. I was placed 1st in the 1986 competition and second in the 1987 competition, and the cups for that complete my trophy collection.

Right at the moment, I am learning Ju Jitsu