UCLA Diving, Gymnastics Opens Doors For Youngsters

Dec. 8, 2000

This fall, two UCLA teams opened their practice doors to students, teachers andparents from the UCLA Child Care group. This energetic group of four and fiveyear-olds had been learning about different countries and cultures by watchingthe 2000 Summer Olympics. The group wanted to wrap-up the lesson withexcursions to various UCLA team practices to help bring the experience home tothese young students.

On October 20, head coach Tom Stebbins and members of the women's diving teamwelcomed the group to the Sunset Canyon Recreation pool. While Stebbins talkedto the group, the athletes went through a normal warm up and gradually movedinto more complex dives.

On December 8, the group ventured to the John Wooden Center to watch the 2000 NCAA Championship women's gymnastics team practice. After a question and answer session with assistant coach Randy Lane and 2000 Olympian Alyssa Beckerman, the group watched as the team worked through a warm-up on the floor exercise and then broke to begin practice on the individual events.

One parent commented, 'The children were very happy and truly enjoyed theexperience. All of the UCLA student-athletes and coaches that we have meetthrough these two visits have been wonderful. The children are involved in aweekly tumbling program, so I think they really appreciated the chance to watchthese athletes up close. It's been great that they had the opportunity to notonly study some of the best athletes in the world, but also to meet some thatlive right here in LA.'

For more information about the UCLA Child Care group, please visit their websiteat www.childcare.ucla.edu.

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