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FY2015 NTT Dream Kids Interaction Track and Field Class, Osaka Grounds

NTT West is implementing initiatives for promoting sports and aims to become a much-loved company that is close to the community through the achievements of its Track and Field Team, a symbol of NTT West.
On February 6, 2016, NTT West held NTT Dream Kids Interaction Track and Field Class in Osaka for its 10th running year. A total of 43 students from 7 middle schools in the prefecture took part in the event and enjoyed interacting with active professional athletes and coaches.

A golden opportunity to learn from national level athletes

The athletes who are members of the NTT West track and field team are all familiar names who participate in the “New Year Ekiden” and “West Japan Corporate Team Ekiden.” It was a golden opportunity to learn directly from such athletes and coaches. The participating students all listened intently to their words and engaged vigorously in training.

Active professional athletes explain the basics of running

Toshihiro Kenmotsu, who won 3rd place in the National Championships (1500m) in 2014, gave a lecture on running forms. Using his own body to demonstrate movements, he carefully explained various movements and forms such as the importance of “lifting one leg and making sure the body doesn’t sway right or left” and “firmly propelling oneself forward while flexing the front thigh muscles.”

The Ekiden Race kicks off amid excited commentary and cheers

After “warm ups” and a training that starts off running at a slow pace and gradually building up called “build up running,” participants were split into 9 mixed-gender teams to start the main event, “Ekiden Race.” During the race, the team mood maker Yasuhito Ikeda gave a running commentary. Teammates and accompanying teachers excitedly cheered on the runners and turned the grounds into a lively event.

Even the slightly unexpected turns into memorable moments!?

The long awaited demonstration followed. Students ran alongside active professionals and experienced their speed. The students, with heightened bonds of solidarity after the Ekiden Race, put their heads together and came up with the strategy of relaying short distances. As a result, the athletes with no reliefs lost against the students, bringing laughter to the grounds.

Passionate words from coaches who have experienced many hardships

In the latter half was a lecture by coach ?saki, who has a triumphant history as the winner of the 2002 Asian Marathon Championship and achieving 2nd place in the 2004 Tokyo International Marathon. He talked about his experiences of overcoming many hardships and also gave the students passionate words of advice such as, “Please don’t ever forget the joy you felt when you first began track and field,” “Holding big dreams and moving relentlessly forward will definitely bear fruit” and “It is always important to feel gratitude toward the people around you.”

Voices of the participants

Toyoyuki Abe

I was moved by seeing the students engaged seriously in activities

By watching the students engaging seriously in the activities, I felt that, even though our times may be different, we are no different in the way we embrace the sports.
I hope that they will continue to engage earnestly not only in training but also their studies and personal lives, to one day become an athlete who will be cheered on by everybody. In addition, I also hope that through track and field, they will be able to interact internationally and across generation to further expand their horizons.

Masaki Sekido

Being able to see many smiles

The Interaction Track and Field Class is an event I always look forward to. Although I acutely feel how hard it is to teach, I enjoy actively moving with the students, seeing their smiles and feeling anew how fun track and field is.
I hope that through these activities, more students will continue to pursue track and field or other sports.

Yuki Kimura

One’s efforts will never let one down – so let’s challenge ourselves to big goals

I discovered many students who will probably transform into great runners after improving their running forms. I have continued track and field for around 10 years but I still believe one’s effort will never let one down. Always adding a little extra every day will build the connection to achieving one’s goals.
Please continue to diligently engage in training, looking not only to Japan but also the world.