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The Future of Field Hockey is in Our Hands…So What Are We Going to Do About It?
Hey guys, Alex here. This is a topic that’s been on my heart lately and I wanted to share a few thoughts with you.
As a sport, we’ve made some pretty big strides in the last few years. The 2016 Olympics were definitely a huge turning point – so many people buzzing and getting excited about the games and outcome. But there’s still so much work to be done and it’s on us to take it to the next level!
For those looking to play their part in growing the sport, here are a few simple things you can do to help:
Become your local team’s #1 fan and rally the squad/neighbors/anyone and everyone to fill the sidelines.
Imagine if everyone showed up for field hockey games like they do football…that would be pretty amazing! Now, hear out the dreamer in me: Who’s to say we can’t make that happen? Maybe it’s the local high school team, or perhaps it’s the local university or club team. Either way, find your team and champion it! Buy your fan gear, show up to the games and invite your mates out until they are hooked too. Pretty soon, this is how the conversation will go: “It’s Friday night, where’s everybody at?” “The usual, just over at Bradford pitch catching the field hockey game.”
Get your mates together and start up a summer evening side league.
As lovely as summer is, it’s usually when I start getting the field hockey itch and wishing away the days ‘til pre-season (thank goodness for the World Cup this year #fieldhockey #alldayeveryday). A summer league keeps you out on the pitch and gives your other friends a chance to try their hand at the game in a super casual, low pressure environment. It’s also just a nice way to get out and have a laugh with your mates!
Make the World Cup your “Bachelor” this summer.
Talk about the World Cup ALL the time. Like all the time. ‘Til your friends have no choice but to give it a go and watch with you (hey, it worked for Stranger Things, Grey’s Anatomy and The Bachelor, right?). Start up a fantasy league as a way to get people involved and excited. Tune in and arrange social evenings around supporting your team. Plus, a little competition never hurt nobody.
If you didn’t Snap it, did it even happen?
I know you’ve heard it before, but guys…social media is SO powerful. All the biggest sports, teams and players have huge followings on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. We’ve got to get people buzzing about field hockey too! Share your favourite drills, best goals and most exciting team plays. When you go to a game, throw a couple quick vids up on your Instastory for that #fomo effect. Let’s get field hockey #trending #hashtag.
Inspire the next generation.
Remember that coach who had a major impact on you? Ask around! Find out if there is a local junior team where you live. Talk to the coach and see if you can help mentor the young players. Having someone who’s been in their shoes recently means a lot and has a major impact.
Hopefully these ideas inspire you! If so, I’d love to hear about it. Also, if you have any other ideas, let me know – I would love to know what you’re doing and what’s working. Find me at @alexdanson15 on Instagram or @AlexDanson15 on Twitter.
Thanks for listening.
All the love,