A "Meet with a Champ" session has taken place to mark 60 years since Melbourne 1956 ©Twitter/AOC

Australian athletes have held a special "Meet with a Champ" interview session with budding youngsters in order to mark the 60th anniversary of the Melbourne 1956 Olympic Games.

Race walker Rhydian Cowley and swimmers Belinda Hocking and Travis Mahoney met with more than 200 students at Lakeside Stadium as part of a special Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) scheme.

It marks exactly 60 years since long distance runner Ron Clarke lit the Olympic Flame at the Opening Ceremony of the 1956 Games at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

"Melbourne is an amazing sporting city of Australia and I feel very luck to live here," Hocking, a three-time World Championship medallist, who finished fifth in the 200 metres backstroke at Rio 2016, said. 

"Having a home Games would be extremely special, I imagine, and the support you would get being at home would be incredible."

Ron Clarke pictured lighting the Olympic Flame at the Melbourne 1956 Opening Ceremony ©AOC
Ron Clarke pictured lighting the Olympic Flame at the Melbourne 1956 Opening Ceremony ©AOC

Cowley, who finished 33rd over 20 kilometres in the Brazilian city, added that it is important for Olympians to attempt to encourage the next generation.

"When you're the student, on your way through life, there are so many people along the way there to lend a hand and help you out, so to be given the chance to lend my hand and try to inspire is nice," he said.

Cowley is due to join Athens 1997 marathon World Championship bronze medal winner Steve Moneghetti at another school in order to "continue to spread the Olympic Movement to the next generation". 

"Meet with a Champ" tours around the country during the year and each event features two "outstanding Olympians", who share with aspiring athletes the "positive impact sport has had on their lives".

Athletes will talk about how they became involved in sport and the positive impact it has had or is having on their lives, as well as their experience at the Olympic Games.