SCHOOLCHILDREN were put through their paces by two athletes hoping to go for Olympic and Paralympic gold this summer.

Pupils from West Lea and Bush Hill Park schools in Enfield were given a sprinting masterclass by Dina Asher-Smith and Libby Clegg, who are both looking to be part of the Team GB squad in Rio de Janeiro.

The day was part of the Sainsbury’s Active Kids Paralympic Challenge, which has been designed to introduce young people to the sports of athletics, boccia, goalball and sitting volleyball.

Asher-Smith, the British record holder in women’s 100m and 200m, and Clegg, a two-time Paralympic silver medalist, did a number of exercises with the children, including running when blindfolded.

The children said they had loved the experience.

Catherine Naneva, 10 from Bush Hill Park School said: “It was really fun when doing the blindfolded running and it was a really cool experience to meet Dina and Libby.

“I feel it’s important to have these sports because when you train in sport you get healthy and have fun.”

Shardon-nay Darko-Lewis, aged 11 from Bush Hill Park, added: “I had a blindfold on at first so didn’t know straightaway that I was paired with Dina. It was really inspiring to be with a famous athlete and to be inspired by her as she was helping me run. Running with the blindfold was quite scary but I trusted her as she explained what to do to make me feel comfortable.”

Both athletes said that getting involved in sport at a young age is crucial for a healthy lifestyle.

Ms Clegg said: “As a Paralympian, providing young people with equal opportunities to get involved in sport is something I’m very passionate about.”

Ms Asher-Smith said all children should try something new to get them active and excited for the summer Olympics.

She said: “Athletics is a great inclusive sport for all, but many young athletes have probably never had the opportunity to understand and experience some of the Paralympic disciplines.”