Lexi scales Cornish heights

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University of Brighton students in Eastbourne went rock climbing and surfing in Cornwall. For one, experiences were extra special: Lexi Hibberd is blind.


Undergraduate PE, sports coaching and sport science students were in Bude to learn complex outdoor activity skills including canoeing, kayaking, rock climbing, abseiling, surfing and windsurfing.


Dr Gary Stidder, principal lecturer in the university’s School of Sport and Service Management in Eastbourne, said, “This is a very testing series of activities for students but especially for Lexi.


“She showed amazing courage and skill and all the other students were more than happy to lend her a helping hand.


“It was great training for them because they may well be teaching students with disabilities in the future.”


Lexi, who is studying sport studies with physical education, hopes to develop a career in sport. She said, “The activities in Bude were amazing and the experience was something I will never forget.


“My favourite was the surfing. Riding a wave is an amazing experience, but so is lying on a board and feeling the waves crashing over your back. It’s a horrible sensation but it is also sublime, something that I wish everyone could experience.


“When I complete my Level 1 certificates I am choosing to regard it as my driving test since it’s the closest I can get to that particular rite of passage.”


Dr Stidder said the event “focused on a student-centred approach.


By the end of the week students had experienced a choice of activities.


They learned to appreciate issues related to activities in such environments, including safety and emergency, access and environmental impacts.


They also attended a series of theoretically based lectures.”


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