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UCLan teams up with top mountain sports centre

UCLan students will benefit from practical lessons with one of the country's top providers of outdoor adventure activities, following a partnership agreement with Plas y Brenin, the National Mountain Sports Centre, to help deliver some of its sports and outdoor courses.

This unique partnership between UCLan and the Sport England National Centre means UCLan students studying on the outdoor leadership and adventure sports coaching degrees will benefit from the expertise of staff from Plas y Brenin, as well as that of staff at UCLan, in one of the UK's most popular outdoor activity locations.

A combination of UCLan and Plas y Brenin staff will jointly deliver a range of modules at the National Centre in Snowdonia that develop the students' practical, coaching and leadership skills. This includes mountaineering, rock climbing, white water kayaking, sea kayaking, mountain-biking and canoeing.

In addition, the University's Institute of Coaching and Performance will work closely with Plas y Brenin on research projects, such as understanding the judgement and decision making processes of experts in adventure sports that will help influence the future development of the outdoor profession over the next decade.

UCLan Senior Lecturer and former Head of Department at Plas y Brenin Loel Collins said: "This exciting partnership with one of the focal providers of outdoor adventure in the UK will allow our students to gain hands-on, practical experience with some of the best instructors in the industry in a unique environment.

"Along with my colleagues from the Institute of Coaching and Performance I'm looking forward to working with Plas y Brenin on some innovation research projects that will hopefully set the standard of expert practice in the outdoors industry."

Dave Cheetham, Marketing Manager for Plas y Brenin, commented: "We're delighted UCLan has selected The National Mountain Sports Centre as the base for its outdoor leadership and adventure sports coaching degrees.

"UCLan has a reputation for bringing out the best in its students, helping them go on to develop long-lasting and fulfilling careers in the outdoors. As an organisation its standards and values are firmly in line with our own, and we're convinced this unique partnership between two of the most highly experienced and respected providers of outdoor training will result in an unrivalled learning environment for its students.

"In addition to enjoying top-class coaching, world-class facilities and equipment, the students will be immersed in the exciting and inspiring world of a National Sports Centre. Every day they will be surrounded by high performance athletes, coaches and enthusiasts all eager to help enthuse and inform.

"Aside from their day-to-day studies, they will rub shoulders with many of the country's most successful climbers, paddlers and riders have the opportunity to engage directly with decision makers from the governing bodies of those sports.

"We have no doubt their future careers be influenced by every moment of their stay with us."

UCLan's outdoor leadership and adventure sports coaching students are also given the opportunity to gain practical experience abroad as well as in the UK and have taken expeditions in Norway and Canada in recent years.

Currently celebrating its sixtieth year, Plas y Brenin is based in Snowdonia, North Wales, and is one of Sport England's three National Centres.

As The National Mountain Sports Centre, Plas y Brenin runs a year round programme of mountain sports and adventurous activities catering for every level of competence, experience and ability. Plas y Brenin is managed by The Mountain Training Trust on behalf of Sport England.

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Sharon Rosser: Understanding successful aging through Nature Challenge Activities, insights from the older adult climbers, cavers and sea kayakers
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Dr Helen Hooper, Rosemary Smith and Cath Wilson: Learning through sharing experiences: critical reflections of the experiences of three female outdoor instructors.
Abstracts can be found here 

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