Elite paratriathlete and teacher to bring swim, bike, run to life in schools

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British elite paratriathlete and teacher, Michael Salisbury, is the first ambassador to be announced for the British Triathlon children and young people programme Active Skills for Life.

Salisbury, who has represented Great Britain internationally since 2021, podiumed at last year's European Championships in Spain and trains and races alongside his day job as a teacher at Dame Allan’s School in Newcastle. 

He has come onboard as the national governing body’s first ambassador for Active Skills for Life, a children and young people’s programme which is aligned to the National Curriculum for PE, helping schools, clubs and community organisations to deliver swim, bike, run sessions for 7-14 year olds. 

Nurturing physical literacy through the core disciplines of triathlon (swimming, cycling, running and transition), Active Skills for Life is an inclusive programme that caters for children with and without disabilities, helping to support children from all backgrounds in developing healthy and active lifestyles. 

Offering curriculum packs for schools and holiday camp packs for clubs and community organisations, Active Skills for Life will support teachers, leaders and coaches in delivering sessions through on-going CPD opportunities and a suite of resources. 

Competing in the men’s PTS5 classification, Salisbury first picked up triathlon in 2020 having been encouraged into the sport by friends from university. 

On his announcement, Salisbury said: “I’m thrilled to be an ambassador for Active Skills for Life. It is a programme which aligns with my values as an athlete and a teacher, promoting inclusivity, health, and lifelong skills.  

“Success is not just about personal achievement, but about setting an example and encouraging others to discover their potential. I look forward to sharing my journey and the lessons that I’ve learned along the way to help equip the next generation with the skills and confidence to lead active, healthy lives.” 

Announcing their Active Lives data for the end of 2023, Sport England shared that less than half of the country’s children are meeting the recommended daily physical activity amount as set out by the Chief Medical Officer.  

Active Skills for Life keeps the values of fun and enjoyment at its core, helping to develop physical literacy and key life skills through play and participation in physical activity. 

The age-appropriate sessions can be adapted depending on the facilities available, meaning that a lack of a swimming pool or access to bikes won’t hold children back in developing the physical skills they can learn through swimming and cycling. 

Amy Hall, Head of Children and Young People at British Triathlon, said: “Bringing Michael onboard as our first Active Skills for Life ambassador is a really exciting step for us. 

“Not only does he bring his experience of competing internationally for Great Britain, but he can also share his knowledge and understanding as a teacher with over 13 years’ experience of working in schools. 

“Active Skills for Life is crafted with inherent inclusivity, ensuring that resources supplied to educators, leaders, and coaches come with built-in accessibility for children with disabilities. 

“Swim, bike, run participation through Active Skills for Life nurtures physical literacy. fostering a commitment to lifelong healthy habits and we’re thrilled to have Michael onboard to actively support and promote this.”   

Through Salisbury’s announcement as an ambassador for Active Skills for Life, 10 schools will receive the Active Skills for Life resources for free. He will also make a number of visits to schools, sharing his journey with students and teachers on the impact that swim, bike, run and triathlon has had on him. 

 Find out more about Active Skills for Life by visiting the website or emailing activeskillsforlife@britishtriathlon.org.    

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