The training event at MXP, Stirling, is putting the Police Scotland Youth Volunteers through their paces, where they are learning about physical fitness; self-defence techniques; nutrition; and effective team working.
Mr Whittle became aware of the PSYV Fitness Focus Event in his role as spokesperson for the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party Health Education, Lifestyle and Sport.
Mr Whittle delivered a motivational speech, drawing on his experience of the Olympic Games, industry, athletics coaching and his journey to becoming an MSP. It is hoped his knowledge and experiences inspired the young people of PSYV to continue their personal development journey with the PSYV.
The youth volunteers undergo a structured training programme, providing a unique opportunity to volunteer at both local and national events.
In weekly sessions in 22 areas throughout Scotland, around 500 youth volunteers take part in physical exercise which is delivered in a fun and effective way.
Independent evaluation of PSYV has highlighted the benefits of taking part in physical activity and proper nutrition can have on a young person.
Inspector Craig Rankine, National Co-ordinator, PSYV, said: “To have the support of such a high achieving individual, who is able to offer advice across such a wide range of life and experiences is of great benefit to PSYV and its young people. He is endorsing the value of PSYV as a youth engagement programme, but is personally investing in the future of Scotland’s young people.”
Mr Whittle, said: “It’s great to have the opportunity to come along and work with the PSYV at their health and fitness event.
“As a former athlete I understand just how big a difference regular physical activity and a good diet can make to your life. It’s not just that it’s good to keep fit, there are real mental health benefits too. Being active and participating in sport can build self-confidence as well as learning the importance of teamwork and commitment.
“The work the PSYV are doing to engage with young people won’t just improve their life prospects but helps them become more engaged with their community too. I think it’s fantastic!”