Duchess Kate Plays Volleyball in Heels

Another milestone day for Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge in her life as a royal. After giving birth three months ago to Prince George, and largely out of the public eye, there was no sign she had lost her figure or form. Not only did she give a royal touch to the charity, Sportsaid, as their new patron, she also gave a few royal strikes in a volleyball session to show what kind of shape she was in. And this while wearing wedges.

"People were really impressed how she could come out so soon for an event like this, so soon after having her baby," one Sportsaid official said.

She mingled and spoke with young athletes - badminton players, para-athetes in wheelchairs, fencers, soccer players, and asked a lot of questions. "She's a good listener and wanted to hear everything from the young people," said Simon Worsfold, spokesman for the charity.

Then Kate was ready to play. She lined up on the makeshift volleyball court at the net, and took her position as a striker with the young players. Showing just how athletic she is and her condition, she leaped, went down for low scoops, striking the ball at different angles, the only move missing in her arsenal of shots, a royal header. Her agility more striking given the enormous heels she was wearing.

"Everyone kept talking about how great she looked, and even though she was wearing heels, played volleyball. There was no sign she had even stopped doing royal duties because of her pregnancy and the birth And the way she dressed, casual in jeans, which she thought was appropriate for the occasion," noted Victoria Murphy, ABC's royal consultant.

For Kate, this choice as a charity to sponsor was tailor made. "The fit between her and the charity is perfect." said Worsfold, "Her interest in sports, her interest in youth, and her interest in young people to achieve their ambitions. " Building on the success of the Olympics, the charity now sponsors 1500 young British athletes and para- athletes who may also aspire to become as an Olympian.

Though today was one of many firsts for the Duchess- her first official engagement as a royal mum, and also as one going solo, without her husband Prince William, the consensus is that Kate has not lost her stride. But Murphy ntoes, "The duchess will be eased into her appearances and choosing of charities," noting that she and Prince William are still builing a bond with young Prince George. In fact, Prince William was the royal babysitter with the newborn as the duchess was striking volleyballs.

The Duchess is expected to take her time of building her profile of charities and of making appearances. With Sportsaid, she now has 7 charities as the royal patron . The Queen has hundreds. And the Queen makes more than 400 appearances a year. The Duchess of Cambridge seems poised to tackle that feat in her own royal lifetime.

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