Young talent is emerging

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It might be as a result of emerging from a restrictive lockdown during the pandemic, or it could just be a renewed interest in outdoor physical activity.

But whatever the reasons behind the boost in numbers taking part in youth sport on Arran, it is extremely heartening to see Arran is bucking the trend of increased inactivity and declining mental health faced by many youngsters across Scotland.

As stories this week highlight, hockey on Arran has received a welcome boost as younger players take to the field and the youth division of the club is so heavily subscribed it is almost at maximum capacity.

A similar influx of junior rugby players has also ensured more children on Arran are taking part in community building, health improving, participatory wellness exercises that not only gives them a sense of belonging, but also encourages healthier habits and draws them away from the attractions of modern gadgets.

The coaches of youth development golf, hockey, football and rugby are to be commended for their commitment to encouraging Arran’s youth to take part in sport and to reap all the associated benefits.

Their continued commitment will ensure Arran will be able to field players in many sporting disciplines in future years, installing a sense of pride and some much-needed hope in these troubling times where Scotland’s youth are increasingly afflicted with malaise, social anxiety and feelings of isolation.

We might even see a senior rugby team back on the field of play.