With the spectacular Commonwealth Games in Glasgow coming to a close today (Sunday, 3rd of August), where we’ve seen multiple shoot outs in some of the most breath taking hockey games that’s ever graced the astro pitch, the spot light was firmly on the goal keepers, with their hearts in their mouths, they made every ballet-esque move to protect their net.
England ladies came milimeters away from clinching the gold medal, only to heartachingly lose in the final seconds and then unfortunately coming second in the shoot out. England men also took it to the very end, where they defeated New Zealand in a gripping penalty shuttle session, where George Pinner remained heroic in stance and composure to help aid his country to bronze.
The hockey saga was firmly written around the keeper protagonists, and with Rachel Lynch of Australia also having a plethora of clean sheets under her belt, it’s clear that the role of the keeper has never been more important.
Wapping Hockey Club have taken heed in pouncing on the Olympic legacy from the games in the capital 2 years ago, and has now established a goalkeeper academy for all aspiring keepers, with world class coaches, including Maddie Hinch, John Hurst and Allan Dick.
Maddie Hinch (pictured above in action in the World Cup). Maddie is the current first choice goalkeeper for England Women and one of the best goalkeepers in the world! Maddie was Investec Women’s Senior Performance Player of the Season last year, was the Hockey Writers’ Club player of the year, and won her third Keeper of the Tournament award at the 2013 World League finals.
John Hurst, Co-Manager of England Women & Consultant GK coach to the England & GB Squads. John has over 100 international caps, is a former England Captain & has been coaching as part of the England set up for 25 years.
Allan Dick, who played international hockey in goal for Scotland from 2003 until his recent retirement, was part of the first ever Scotland men’s hockey team to compete at the Commonwealth Games in 2006, and has been coaching for over 6 years.
Wapping Hockey Club has released the following about the hockey goalkeeping academy and training:
The academy is going to be a monthly offering, and we are looking to coach 30 goalkeepers at a time. But what’s more, we are opening this up to coaches to observe, either on pitch or from the stands as you prefer. You can use this to supplement your existing club or school offering, improving your goalies and improving your coaches. Similarly, whilst we expect young goalkeepers to progress through the single system such as JAC, JDC and JRPC, we see no harm in supplementing their offering with a club-led solution in a convenient, and frankly inspiring, setting.
Whilst this training will be free to our members (goalkeepers, coaches, etc.), we will need to ask for non-member attendees to make a small contribution to costs. Pricing is to be determined but we want to keep it financially inclusive so it will not be expensive – the point is that we collaborate and build a lasting legacy, and break down some of those club silos to ensure some of the most important players on the pitch get the world class support they deserve. We will be seeking sponsorship too, to help keep the user costs to a minimum. The academy will be open to a range of ages and abilities, we are equally happy teaching beginners as we are teaching seasoned national leaguers, we will simply group you up so you are coached at the right level.
The first session will be run by John and Maddie, on Thursday 28 August, 8pm-10pm at the new home of hockey, the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre. To register your interest, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Goalie” and we will be in touch asap.
Wapping HC’s Chair, Stuart Burnside writes:
“As a major London sports club fortunate enough to have secured access to superb legacy hockey facilities at the Lee Valley Hockey & Tennis Centre, we feel it is on us to help deliver a lasting legacy from the London Olympics. We have decided to start with goalkeepers.”
With regards to the technicality of being a quality goal keeper and performing at your very best, Wapping HC’s Vice Chair & Head of Performance, Rachel Haseloff states:
“Too often, goalkeepers are treated as a resource for attacking drills rather than as players deserving their own bespoke training. This ends now – we are putting a world class academy in place, available to everyone.”
I whole heartedly recommend you take a chance to jump on this opportunity if you can! If I could, I’d be there in a flash!