Xinjiang puts new emphasis on soccer in kindergarten

By MAO WEIHUA in Urumqi and ZHANG XIAOMIN | | Updated: 2022-03-14 14:30
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Children play soccer at the Seventh Kindergarten of Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur autonomous region. [Photo provided to]

The Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region will build 1,000 kindergartens this year that will feature soccer education, under a pilot project of the regional departments of sports, education and finance.

The special kindergartens will be distributed in five cities and prefectures — Urumqi, Changji, Hotan, Kashgar and Aksu.

Sources in the regional sports bureau said the project is the first large-scale effort to focus on soccer in Xinjiang kindergartens. It is expected to improve children's health, develop teen talent and spread soccer culture. 

The project is supported by the China Football Development Foundation with public welfare money collected from the sports lottery.

All selected kindergartens will follow a soccer training and education regimen provided by the Ministry of Education. For children 3 to 6 years old, the training will focus on fun games to increase their interest.

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