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Declining junior provision in Hockey Clubs in Yorkshire: 1990-2011. David Barrett, Sheffield Hallam University Geoff Nichols, University of Sheffield Christina Woods, SUBHC. Policy focus on young people . Sport England Policy and Clubs. Sport England’s strategy; 2012 to 2017 ;

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declining junior provision in hockey clubs in yorkshire 1990 2011
Declining junior provision in Hockey Clubs in Yorkshire: 1990-2011

David Barrett, Sheffield Hallam University

Geoff Nichols, University of Sheffield

Christina Woods, SUBHC

policy focus on young people
Policy focus on young people

Sport England Policy and Clubs

  • Sport England’s strategy; 2012 to 2017;
    • (2012) focuses on 14 – 25 year olds
  • NGBs ‘signed up to’ ‘Whole-Sport Plans’
    • 60% for this age group.
  • England Hockey’s whole-sport plan received £12m in funding.
    • Runs from 2013 to 2017
in the context of participation trends
In the context of Participation Trends
  • Trend towards more individual participation, out of club structure
    • Identified between 1987 and 1996 (Coalter, 1999) using GHS
  • Continued from 2005 to 2010 (Active People Survey)
  • In this second period the biggest growth sports were:
    • athletics (including road running and jogging), gym, cycling
  • Declines in:
    • Golf, badminton, tennis, cricket, rugby union and rugby league (Gratton, et al. 2011)
methods
Methods
  • Handbooks of the Yorkshire HA used to estimate:
    • number of clubs in Yorkshire between 1990-1 and 2011-12
    • number of teams fielded by these clubs
    • number of junior clubs
  • Confirmation through:
    • Yorkshire HA website
    • Fixtureslive.com
    • League officials
  • Interviews with club officials to ask about reasons for changes
m ain findings
Main findings
  • A reduction in the number of clubs
  • A reduction in the number of clubs with junior sections
    • especially coinciding with introduction of CRB checks
why fewer teams why fewer junior teams
Why fewer teams?Why fewer junior teams?
  • Key Volunteers – not replaced
  • Competing demands – on volunteers’ and players’ time
  • Cross sport competition – via whole sport plans
  • Reduced access to specialist facilites - 3G pitches
  • Red tape – CRB checks – clubmark requirements
  • Less tuition in schools
  • Is there a ‘tescoisation’ of clubs – fewer provide for juniors?
why do clubs fail
Why do clubs fail?

Cost

Cost is also a factor, again, the high cost of astro pitch hire.  With hockey attracting little or no media attention... it does not therefore attract much sponsorship or funding. The reduction in the number of local hockey teams means that teams have to travel further and again, people’s weekend time is precious and many simply don’t want to spend their weekends travelling to and from hockey games. Volunteers are needed to officiate, coach, and do admin jobs – too few people stretched too thinly.

Club administrator, East Yorkshire

why do junior clubs fail
Why do (junior) clubs fail?

Schools disengaged; competition from football

Another big factor is that hockey is no longer taught in many schools – many in Hull just don’t do it, partly because they don’t have an astro, partly because their teachers aren’t interested. The FA has thrown such a lot of money into football so the number of girls and boys football teams is on the rise and there’s only so much sport kids can play (and parents are already stretched so can only take children to so many sports).

Governing body administrator, Humberside

why do junior clubs fail1
Why do (junior) clubs fail?

Players grow up and move on

Regarding the Kingfishers team, this was essentially a “badgers” team I set up within [the club I play for] to offer girls between the age of 13-16 match experience. They were not being picked for any of our senior teams as they weren’t ready, but turned up for training every week, so it was a way for them to get experience. After 2 years, they had progressed sufficiently to be selected for higher teams, so we reverted to 5 senior teams, rather than 4 plus a badgers side.

Club administrator, East Yorkshire

why do clubs fail1
Why do clubs fail?

Key people leave

There were a number of reasons. Some of the players gave up because they were getting old, and we didn't have a junior section as such, so there was no-one to replace them. And they played in key positions as well. One was a goalkeeper. Then there were one or two relationship breakdowns. There were two couples in the team who split up, and it wasn't nice. It left a bit of an atmosphere, and people couldn't be bothered after that.

Club member, South Yorkshire

a policy rethink
A Policy Rethink?
  • Is club sport the way forward for junior participation?
  • If so – what support is needed for clubs and facilities?
  • Is competition between NGBs useful?
  • CRB checks will still be there – how can clubs be helped though them, and clubmark.
  • Is new forms of the game the way forward?
    • Informal / Casual
    • Rush Hockey anyone?
slide18

Thank you for listeningAny questions?David BarrettSheffield Hallam Universityd.barrett@shu.ac.uk@SportInResearchGeoff NicholsSheffield Universityg.nichols@Sheffield.ac.uk Christina WoodsMSc student – Sheffield University