Dubai – Day 2

As today is Sarah’s birthday we had planned for some social time and made the most of it including a ‘getting to know you’ meeting with one of the Dubai hockey family in the well known Atlantis Hotel on the end of the Palm. Also saw the evening fountain show in the city centre.

Tomorrow is ‘Hockey Day’ with both a presentation and coaching session to give.

Radios & Airports

BBC Radio phoned 10 minutes before we were due to leave for the airport. They are really great in the way they’ve adopted Walking Hockey. Interviewed live for Drive and they want more when we return.

Traffic jams circumnavigated to arrive on time only to find flight to Dubai delayed. Oh well, no rush. Time to chill out and relax.

 

News from Australia

My colleague in Australia, Nate Milevskiy, who has done so much to help arrange our trip sent the following to us today:

“Just got off the phone with our local newspaper. They are going to come down and take photos on the night and are printing an article in the coming days to grow some interest for you. … it most definitely is getting people excited around here. It will grow our small association and help build its reputation. Cairns seem to be excited about it as well.”

So, where are we going and why?

Our trip, representing England Hockey as Ambassadors and also our local club, Bromsgrove Hockey Club will be to launch Walking Hockey and find out about the hockey family abroad. It will take us to Dubai, New Zealand and Australia. The theme for the trip is Project Lifetime – the chance to play hockey throughout life.

The trip has been made possible by funding contributions from Mason and Jones, Adidas and lots of individual assistance from too many people   to mention across the World –  you know who you are!

These are our main objectives:

  • Help them understand and adopt Walking Hockey.
  • Discuss how we both attract, retain and develop senior players.
  • Discuss how we both attract, retain and develop junior players.
  • Discuss how we both attract, retain and develop volunteers.
  • Commence the process of twinning hockey associations and clubs.
  • Commence the process of twinning schools in the UK to those in the countries we are visiting.
  • Commence discussions around player and coach exchange visits.

IMG_2241.JPG

In Dubai we will be meeting lots of hockey players and coaches, giving a lecture at Kent College then giving a coaching session to both juniors and seniors.

From there we fly to Auckland, New Zealand, to meet with the National Governing Body for Hockey. We will be talking all of our objectives. Whilst in Auckland we will meet the Head of Auckland’s Hockey Association.

After that we fly to Brisbane and up to Buderim, home of the Sunshine Coast Hockey Association. Here we will be giving a lecture to up to 11 hockey associations in south Queensland. (Queensland is 7 times the size of the UK). This will include the CEO of Queensland Hockey. We will also be watching coaching sessions.

We then head north to Cairns to meet with the Cairns Hockey Association to go through all of our objectives and watch several matches.

After that we fly to Melbourne to meet with the Acting CEO of Hockey Australia and his team to go through all of our objectives.

Finally we are meeting with the Head of Footscray HC in Melbourne before heading back home.

Once we return home we will be compiling a report to go to England Hockey and other interested clubs.