England's Jasmine Hutton addresses school children during the 2023 Manchester Open.
England's Jasmine Hutton addresses school children during the 2023 Manchester Open.

Around 500 Children to be Introduced to Squash at Manchester Open

This year’s Manchester Squash Open will see the PSA Foundation, the registered charity of the Professional Squash Association, look to inspire and engage with the next generation of players by hosting a series of workshops with children from 12 schools across the Greater Manchester area.

As a newly selected Olympic sport, due to make its debut in LA28 in four years’ time, this series of squash workshops, led by highly-qualified coaches, will include approximately 500 school children, including three SEND (Special educational needs and disabilities) groups, who will take part in a several interactive activities, specifically designed to spark their interest and enthusiasm for squash.

The school children will take part in the immersive squash experience at the National Squash Centre during the first three days of the Manchester Squash Open, which takes place between 22nd – 26th May.

The programme will feature three activities aimed at providing children with a comprehensive understanding of squash, with sessions taking place between 10:00 and 16:30 on the first three days of the event:-

On-Court Experience: Children will have the opportunity to step onto the squash court and receive hands-on guidance from experienced coaches. An interactive wall will also be used, combining technology and squash to create exciting games.

Activation Zone: In between matches, the children will have access to an engaging activation zone, featuring eight pop-up ‘rebound’ walls, an LED multi-ball wall, and two mini courts.

Watching the World’s Best in Action: In addition to the interactive activities, children will have the chance to experience the excitement of professional squash first-hand by watching the world’s best players compete at the Manchester Open on a state-of-the-art all-glass show court.

In addition, the children will also get to meet some of the stars of the Manchester Open, with the world’s best players from across the globe competing at the event, such as Egyptian tops seeds Mostafa Asal and Nour El Tayeb, as well as England No.1s Marwan ElShorbagy and Georgina Kennedy.

So far, 12 schools from across the Greater Manchester area have agreed to take part, providing pupils with an unforgettable introduction to squash, which will make its long-awaited debut at the LA28 Olympic Games in four years time.

“We’re excited to introduce 500 children to squash throughout the Manchester Open,” said Adriana Olaya, Head of the PSA Foundation.

“Our goal is to introduce them to the thrill of squash and provide a fun-filled experience that inspires a lifelong love for the sport.

“We are committed to promoting inclusivity and accessibility, ensuring that all children, regardless of their background or abilities, have the opportunity to participate and enjoy the benefits of sports. By providing children with access to squash in a fun and supportive environment, we hope to ignite their passion for sports and encourage them to leave a healthy and active lifestyle.”

England No.1 Georgina Kennedy, who is seeded second for the Manchester Open, said: “Getting children into squash at events like the Manchester Open is so important. Squash teaches you how to stay focused, work hard, and play fair, which are invaluable life skills.

“It’s such an exciting sport to play and is a fantastic way for them to make new friends and be part of a supportive community.”

For more information on the Manchester Open, visit the tournament website or follow the PSA Foundation on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.