PE teacher wins second place in international acrobatic jump rope championship | Aga Khan Academies

PE teacher wins second place in international acrobatic jump rope championship

01 December 2021

The Aga Khan Academy Maputo is pleased to share that Senior School Physical Education (PE) teacher Elves Tembe won second place in the 2021 international acrobatic jump rope championship “Paris Max Freestyle”. The achievement took place in Paris, France from 25-26 September. 
As a three-time world jump rope champion and the president of the Mozambican Gymnastics Federation, Elves said he has definitely achieved his dream. “When I was young, my dream was to become a world jump rope champion,” he said. “Now I have won this title three times, so I could say I have achieved my dream three times.” 
Elves joined the AKA Maputo in 2017 when he first applied to provide jump rope lessons at the Academy. Instead, he was invited to apply for the Senior School PE teaching position and went through the Aga Khan Academies (AKA) Teacher Preparation Programme (TPP), which trains teachers on becoming certified International Baccalaureate (IB) educators. 
“I represent the Academy in international competitions and, looking at my previous competition, I was welcomed back with very warm congratulations from both my colleagues and students,” Elves said. “This means a lot to me and motivates me to keep working hard.” 
Elves highlighted how his participation in the “Paris Max Freestyle” championship was greatly encouraged by the AKA Maputo. “From the leadership team to the students, the Academy really supported my participation in this competition because they appreciate the work that I do,” he said. “I had the freedom to enter the competition without having to worry about compromising my work, as my colleagues would cover my lessons while I was away.”  

The support for Elves’ work extends from the school’s parent community, as parents are appreciative of the fact that Elves sets a strong example for their children through his direct interaction with them. “I was also congratulated by the parents of my students, and I can feel that my achievements through the Academy’s constant support have made a big impact on the school community,” Elves said. “Parents trust that I motivate their children, encourage them to be healthy and fuel their love for sports. When I compete internationally, I motivate students and set the example that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.” 
To conquer the podium position in the “Paris Max Freestyle” championship, Elves and his team, the Moz Tigers, won against two French teams. They lost only to one team in the finale, in a battle referred to as the "Double Dutch". 
“My team and I go through tough preparations for competitions,” Elves said. “Where we train, transport to our training place and our conditions of training may not be the best. So, to compete with people who have some of the best infrastructures and conditions shows that it is all about dedication and perseverance. This demonstrates to our students that they have to work hard to achieve their goals.” 

To encourage enthusiasm about jump rope and have other jump ropers from different countries share their own experiences, Elves and his team also held a workshop in Paris on the sport for children and adults. Individuals from all age groups benefited from this workshop. "We received materials from the French Double Dutch Federation and were declared ‘Ambassadors’ of jump rope at heart,” Elves said. “We believe it will be an added value for Mozambique."  

When the Moz Tigers returned to Mozambique, they conducted another jump rope workshop in Boane, Casa do Gaiato, for 150 children. The team then appealed to the Mozambican government to continue their investment in this type of sport, which has been referenced at an international level 
Elves is also working on reintroducing jump rope and gymnastics initiatives at the AKA Maputo, which had been discontinued due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These initiatives will be implemented with the purpose of encouraging students’ professional involvement in jump rope and gymnastics.  
My goal is to have more students at the AKA Maputo involved in professional jump roping,” Elves said. “In the future, I would like to create a jump rope team within the school that can represent the Academy in national and international competitions. I also plan on hosting jump rope and gymnastics competitions within the school that will positively impact not only our school community but also our country. We have a lot of talent within the Academy, and I believe that this talent can serve Mozambique in future.”