SA Hockey icons to foster school talent in Pretoria

One of SA’s most-capped hockey players, Shelley Russell, is the mastermind behind the initiative to mentor young players and school coaches as part of The Investec Hockey Academy. Photo: Supplied

The SA Women’s Hockey Team recently qualified for the 2018 Hockey World Cup after a stellar performance in the World Hockey League held in Johannesburg last month.

Their sights are now set on visiting various provinces for the rest of the year to mentor young players and school coaches as part of The Investec Hockey Academy.

As such the Investec Hockey Academy will begin with Gauteng, offering courses at St Mary’s Diocesan School for Girls in Pretoria on 16 and 17 September.

SA Hockey icons involved in sharing their expertise on the Academy’s courses at St Mary’s include SA Head Coaches’ Fabian Gregory and Sheldon Rostron, former SA Under-21 Women’s’ Coach Lindsey Wright, as well as SA Women’s’ Hockey players’ Shelley Russell, Quanita Bobbs, Bernadette Coston, Sulette Damons, Lisa Deetlefs, Celia Evans, Nicolene Terblanche and many more.

Passionate about giving back to the youth to sustain the future of SA Hockey, one of SA’s most-capped hockey players, Shelley Russell, is the mastermind behind the initiative who hopes to encourage the growth of the sport and nurture the young talent base in the country.

“We want to give aspiring hockey stars a glimpse of what is required to fine-tune their skills and abilities,” said Russell.

The St Mary’s courses will offer two-day, age-grouped players’ courses and coaches’ courses for all levels, providing them with the opportunity to learn important aspects to take their game to the next level, including the latest coaching techniques, behind-the-scenes training, and skills development.

Aimed at growing the sport’s participation and skills from a grassroots level, The Investec Hockey Academy offers a Fundamental Players’ Course (ages 8 to 11) that aims to build a solid foundation for the sport, an Intermediate Players’ Course (ages 12 to 15); focusing on skills development, and an Advanced Players’ Course (ages 16 to 18), providing players with position-specific training.

“I believe the more exposure you receive as a young child the better you will become,” said Celia Evans, SA Women’s Hockey player.

The coaches’ course, which runs alongside the advanced players’ course, allows coaches of all levels to work alongside professional coaches, providing a first-hand experience of implementing the latest international coaching techniques and creating a community forum of discussion.

“Coaches are exposed to information that will help them build successful teams regardless of age group. As the key to developing our future stars, coaches need to be constantly brought up-to-date with international coaching techniques,” said former SA Under-21 Women’s Hockey Coach, Lindsey Wright.

For more information about the Academy or to register players or coaches for a course, contact Bernadine Miller on (031) 940 5565 or bernadine@investecacademy.com .

 

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