North Notts HC realised there weren’t many opportunities for young players to try out goalkeeping – and have seen the position bear fruits thanks to some eager juniors.
The Nottinghamshire club boats 200 members, with nine adult teams an emerging under-eights side. However, they only had one recognised keeper, Ryan. To tackle this, the club purchased goalkeeper kit and opened up doors for all of our juniors to have a go.
Their first volunteer was Amber, aged nine, quickly followed by Imogen, six, who were both eager to try something new and follow in the club’s older keepers’ footsteps. Coaches were blown away by their enthusiasm and dedication to training.
Amber and Imogen only started playing hockey in the lastr few years. They both started playing outfield initially but were excited to try a new challenge.
Imogen has always been in and around the hockey club as her mum, dad and older sister play, so she couldn’t wait to start the Hockey Heroes programme and pick up a stick herself.
Whereas Amber caught the hockey bug at school and found her way to our club through our growing social media presence.
Amber has has grown in her confidence and skills. When asked why she enjoys playing in goal she said, “It’s fun, a new experience and I like the challenge of stopping the ball”.
After the Hockey Heroes programme, Imogen continued to train and is looking to build up her hours in goals. She says: “I want to be a goalkeeper on TV and I’d like a goalie kit in pink and blue”.
Amber’s advice for new goalkeepers? “Don’t be scared of trying it out. You won’t get hurt because of all the padding and don’t worry if the ball goes in because you can save the next one.”
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