Heolddu are STEM Challenge winners!
A team from Heolddu Comprehensive School, Bargoed, have created the winning design for a rowing glove in the second STEM Challenge. It is so inventive it is now being commercially developed by adidas, the Official Sportswear Partner to London 2012. According to STEMNET, their design was so innovative that it could give our Olympians the winning edge.
Heolddu Comprehensive School beat stiff competition from seven other teams from around the country that made it through to the final, where they faced a Dragon’s Den style interview and grilling from the judges, including Olympic gold medallist rower, Tom James.
As well as their winning glove design making it through to the commercial stage with adidas, other prizes include spending the day with an Olympian, £3,000 worth of STEM Club equipment and the latest in adidas sports clothing.
Yvonne Baker, Chief Executive of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths Network (STEMNET) says: “All the finalists demonstrated a combination of inventiveness and logic in their thinking and some incredibly imaginative designs were submitted. They all applied STEM subjects to the problem and demonstrated both the creativity enabled by these subjects and their practical relevance.”
“The second STEM Challenge has uncovered two teams that have produced extremely innovative and viable ideas that could be a commercial success the world over. Through our 2012 inspired Challenges, we hope to uncover some of the budding technologists, engineers, mathematicians and scientists of the future.”
Rowers don’t tend to wear gloves because they can cause their hands to sweat which impedes the action of rowing. However, a specially designed glove made correctly with the right materials to allow breathability could make a major contribution to the sport.
St. Clement Danes School, in Chenies Road, Chorleywood, Hertfordshire came second with their design for a sailing glove. They also impressed the judges so much with their entry that their design will also be taken through to the commercial stage with adidas, and therefore details of the design are now commercially sensitive. They won £1,500 worth of STEM Club equipment and the latest in adidas sports clothing.
Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School in The Green Road, Ashbourne, Derbyshire came third with their sailing glove design. Their design is based on a horse grooming brush. They created a rubber glove with moulded plastic dimples on that fits closely to the hand and has the flexibility of a goal keeping glove. They won £750 worth of STEM Club equipment and the latest in adidas sports clothing.
The judges for the STEM Challenges were Olympic Rower, Tom James, Nick Fuller, Head of Education at LOCOG and Simon Cartwright, Global Vice President Olympic and Regional Sports at adidas. Tom James was part of the gold medal winning men’s four in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and was awarded an MBE in the 2009 New Year’s Honours list. He achieved a degree in Engineering from Cambridge University.
Nick Craggs, Marketing Director at adidas says: “Through its Tier One sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, adidas is committed to increasing sports participation across the UK. Inspiration comes in all forms and we are delighted that our STEMNET Challenge will help young people understand how important it is to have the best performing sports kit at the very top level and see how it is designed and thought through. Just think how proud the winners will be if their gloves are used at London 2012.”