Cooking food with the Royal Marines

Cooking food with the Royal Marines

  • Wigan Warriors’ Academy teams put their cooking skills to the test last week as they took part in a kitchen workshop with Royal Marines EAT.

  • Colonel Sergeant Mike Beaton: “My passion is to get young people cooking. For the rugby league lads, it’s all about food, rest and recover, train to perform, and then game day itself – they all go hand in hand. Food is a big part of the four cogs in the wheel.”

  • Under-16s Head Coach Anthony Atherton: “The sacrifices players have to make is important. They have to prepare themselves to perform every weekend and can’t afford to slip up.

Wigan Warriors’ Academy teams put their cooking skills to the test on Tuesday and Wednesday as they took part in a kitchen workshop with Royal Marines EAT.

Both the Under-19s and Under-16s squads worked in pairs to produce a healthy dish for one another to help them enhance their eating lifestyle in and outside of their rugby league lives.

Member of the Royal Marines Commandos, Colonel Sergeant Mike Beaton, led the events at the Robin Park Arena and he says food is an integral part of a player’s preparation for performing well on the field.

He commented: “I work as part of Education Awareness Team, where we use food as a platform to talk to young boys and girls about opportunities the Royal Navy and Royal Marines may have.

“My passion is to get young people cooking. For the rugby league lads, it’s all about food, rest and recover, train to perform, and then game day itself – they all go hand in hand. Food is a big part of the four cogs in the wheel.”

Mike explained what the two-day event entailed at the Robin Park Arena, as he gave presentation to the two playing groups.

“The players made a simple chicken dish, including vegetables, vitamins, minerals and fibre, nutrients and protein.

“They’ve worked in pairs to get the bounce off each other; it’s not just food to fuel, as it’s also food to socialise. They’re a squad who train and play together, so this is something else outside of that and carrying on that squad mentality but in a kitchen environment.”

With plans to carry out similar presentations to Wigan’s Women and PDRL teams, Mike expressed his delight of the developing relationship between the Club and the Royal Marines EAT concept.

He added: “We give messages to the players about breakfast in the morning, real food before protein powder, seasonings and the cost of food, which all go together to make a Royal Marine package of who we are, what we are and what we are all about.

“It’s about developing that relationship between the squad and us as Royal Marines. We’re hoping that the players will take our advice away and go home and choose to cook themselves.

“We want to develop our relationship with the coaches at the Club and go into the grassroots clubs who are feeding the Acdademy.”

Warriors Under-16s Head Coach, Anthony Atherton, said: “It’s part of our responsibility to the players to help them be the best they can be. In the last round of appraisals with the Scholars we addressed what they do at home, in terms of their cooking lifestyle away from rugby. There was quite a few who didn’t cook and weren’t confident to approach doing it.

“Mike has given them a fun presentation around career guidance, as it’s important the players have something that sits alongside their rugby ambitions. They had a go at cooking; we want to make sure all the Academy players can cook themselves a healthy dish and have a balance between protein, carbohydrates and key nutrients they need.

“It’s about showing them that it’s not all that complicated to do and giving them the confidence to go away and try do it themselves, which helps them develop as a person, not just as a rugby player, which we also have a responsibility to do.

“The sacrifices players have to make is important. They have to prepare themselves to perform every weekend and can’t afford to slip up. We have to ensure they have all the tools they need to live that lifestyle and give them the best opportunity to succeed.”

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