Wilford and Petone Central school pupils were ‘geared up’ into inline hockey equipment recently as the relatively new sport is promoted to Lower Hutt and Tawa primary schools.
Media Release - 11 December 2012
Inline hockey – a non-contact version of ice hockey - is huge in North America and offers the basic locomotor skills of sliding and striding as well as those of stability, manipulation and coordination.
The Rimutaka Inline Hockey Club launched Hockey on Wheels earlier this year, offering primary schools the opportunity for children to try the sport in-school for free. With funding from KiwiSport through Sport Wellington the club is visiting schools until the end of term with a converted vehicle containing 30 sets of inline hockey equipment, from skates to helmets and everything in between. Three trained coaches and student helpers guide children aged from seven to ten through a basic inline hockey fun and skills sessions.
Inline hockey mini camps will be held in Lower Hutt, Tawa and Kapiti in January as holiday programmes and to consolidate skills.
At Wilford School up to 90 pupils took part in hour-long sessions early in December. They ‘geared up’ to play games and practise moving in the helmets, pads and gloves. A similar number of Petone Central pupils put on skates to test their ability to skate in straight lines and circles. By the end of this term about 900 children from 14 schools will have had a go at inline hockey.
The KiwiSport programme aims to introduce inline hockey to 9000 children by the end of 2013. By developing out-of-school facilities through local partnerships, Hockey on Wheels will also provide pathways into organised sport through new and existing clubs and into competitions throughout the region.
Hockey on Wheels regional coordinator Sandy Nimmo is confident the ‘taster’ sessions will be embraced by schools and will lead to growth of inline hockey in the region. “The kids love it. There’s always lots of activity and noise but they love gearing up and experiencing the sport. By coordinated school visits we can give kids ‘a go’ in their own schoolyard. Ultimately we can help develop a lifelong love of the sport among more people, which will translate to another inline hockey club being established in the region and growth of existing clubs,” says Sandy.
Currently about 150 adults and 70 children participate in the sport in the Wellington Region. The KiwiSport programme aims to increase this at club level by 300 percent within a year.
KiwiSport Manager Peter Woodman-Aldridge says many Kiwi kids already have basic skating skills. “With the introduction of Hockey on Wheels to this age group, these children will have the opportunity to take their skating to a whole new level. KiwiSport aims to get more children playing sport regularly, through numerous programmes which introduce or consolidate many different codes.” Caregivers wanting to register children for the inline hockey mini camps can contact Sandy at email@example.com
Photos attached. Captions: (Group outside photo) Petone Central pupils master skating ‘geared up’ in full inline hockey gear.
(Outside coach and pupil photo) Hockey on Wheels coach Jerreau Hohaia encourages a Petone Central pupil to master inline skating.
For more information on KiwiSport please go to sportwellington.org.nz/kiwisport
For further information or to interview any of the above please contact Andrea Bolton on 021 670564 or firstname.lastname@example.org