Posted in Field Hockey, Fitness, Hockey, St Ives Hockey Club, Women in Sport

Back to Fitness

Warm up, hydration and effective fuelling is essential prior to fitness sessions.

Session 1: Teambuilding

Back with St Ives Hockey Club (SIHC) for their summer fitness sessions and it’s straight back to teambuilding for session 1. 


Fig. 1 – Fitness Passport pre-season goals

Each player is given their own “fitness passport” (shown Fig. 1 & 2) to fill in throughout the sessions to monitor their own progress. 

This season will be concentrating on form: It’s not about quantity. Do one right rather than ten wrong.


Fig. 2 – Fitness Passport progress

Two minute testing: At the start of each session, players complete six exercises for 20 seconds each. These are done on two minute blocks with 30seconds rest between the two blocks. 

1: Squat Jumps – Push ups – Lunges

2: W sits – Side lunges – Burpees.

Card circuit: 15 mins


My favourite introduction to fitness. The group self selected their level of fitness and split into three groups depending on their self-assessment. The group completed the following circuit, using the above rules and the below exercises. 


Final frenzy: 10mins

Another favourite, pairs Tabata. (8 cycles consisting of 20sec exercise, 10sec rest) Take two exercise and alternate within the cycle. You’ll do two Tabata cycles with the exercises below.

  • Push-up slaps (high 5 your mate)
  • Over/unders
  • High 5 crunches 
  • Squat crunches

Finally make sure you cool down and stretch! 

Posted in captain, Coaching, Field Hockey, Hockey, live sport talks, sport, Women in Sport

Live Sport Talks….

…with Olympic hockey Gold medalists Georgie Twigg, Hollie Webb and Shona McCallin.

 

Firstly, I would like to thank Live Sport Talks (@LiveSportTalks) with Charlie Rowe for hosting such a great event at The Dickens Inn, St Katherine’s Docks, London on Thursday night. An insightful chat with three of the Olympic hockey gold medalists, and definitely worth the trip out on a school night.


Georgie Twigg, Hollie Webb, Shona McCallin and their Gold medals.
Photocredit: @LiveSportTalks – courtesy of Graham Hodges

“A group of players coming together with
that collective belief can be so powerful.”

Georgie Twigg makes a very valid point in that statement. The physical and mental preparation that contributes to the lead up to the Olympic Games not only incorporates skills and team play, but how those individuals function as a team. Group and individual mindset shines throughout these players and the importance of the squad dynamic (#31) and the squad contribution is the overriding message of how this team worked towards winning the Olympic Gold medal.

After the tough, disappointing performance at the World Cup, (the girls agreed that this was not a controversial point, but indeed a valid learning and turning point for the squad), this appeared to be the start of a driving force behind the momentum that propelled them into the Olympics.

Rio 2016 was Georgie Twigg’s second Olympic Games, and a first for Hollie Webb and Shona McCallin. The passion that comes across from these three ladies was inspiring, and hearing about the hard work and meticulous preparation in the cycle leading up to the games showed these girls deserved every success they had achieved, both on and off the pitch.

The squad is currently in a re-building phase and as Shona so gracefully put it “after an Olympic games there is a big clear out”. Georgie, choosing to concentrate on law and players such as Kate and Helen Richardson-Walsh, Crista Cullen, Hannah Macleod and Sam Quek no longer training with the England/GB set up. But this means there is a new breed of talent, waiting to shine through. Players like Emily DeFroand, Hannah Martin and Rose Thomas, to name a few of the fifteen new additions (full list: Here).

 

Following ‘that’ game, the profile of hockey shot through the roof. People who had shown little interest in the game were now watching the pinnacle of women’s hockey live on BBC One. The interest in the sport increased overnight, in schools, in clubs and people were just talking about hockey. Georgie shares,

 “I have been told it was the stand out moment of Rio 2016 – compared to ‘Super Saturday’ from London 2012.”

The girls spoke about the number of people who have approached them to speak about the team, about their passion, and most of all about their sport. Hollie still seemed genuinely surprised about their elevated status amongst Team GB, the reception they received at Heathrow on their return and how great it was to have young fans travel especially to the airport in search of autographs.

Olympic village: A stand-out moment for Georgie Twigg was a topless Usain Bolt, wearing one of his gold medals, dancing on his balcony, shouting to passers by below. A surreal time, with a realisation that they were all there, amongst many of their idols, to do the same job.

A meticulously planned training regime, to be carefully executed over a period of fourteen days meant the girls turned up prepared, physically and mentally in the exact place to execute their plan. Replication of tournament conditions throughout the training phase, eight games in fourteen days, and consistent monitoring of their strength and condition ensured every member of the squad was at their peak and ready. But it wasn’t all hockey in Rio, the girls did manage a one day trip up Sugar Loaf mountain, away from the hockey pitch as part of their preparation.

 

The tournament: They knew every game would be tough, they knew the challenges they would face,  and they had video footage to study,  with homework to do. The squad took into the Olympics, from previous tournaments a “take one game at a time” mentality, allowing them to purely focus on that one game ahead of them.

Shona talks about their grit and determination showed during the Argentina game with ten minutes remaining, down to a field of nine or ten players, playing against a strong Argentine team in full attack mode, with hundreds of fans behind them, in awful weather and coming out victorious. A proud and defining moment for her during the Olympic Games.

Hollie speaks about the first game against Australia and their meticulous planning leading into the game to secure such an important start to the tournament. Mentally, this set the tone for a good tournament. Georgie talks about the New Zealand semi-final. She eludes to her thoughts as she received a ball to the jaw,  “I’ve broken my jaw like Kate, ” she squeals, “so not dramatic at all!”. And once stitched up and ready to go, she remembers with a giggle, “we were still only in the third quarter, still only one-nil up. Helen had hurt her hamstring, Lily had hurt her shoulder and Sam Quek was on the forward line. Karen Brown was like, Twiggy, get back on the pitch!” The chaotic game was a real battle which made it a special game to win, and of course she states,  “and we had just made the Olympic final.”

They shared the moment after the game when Kate [Richardson-Walsh] looked at everyone in the team and said “one more game” recalling it as such a powerful moment. They weren’t going to settle for silver.

 

The final: Shona states, “The Dutch do not like playing against Great Britain. We were quietly confident.” Twiggy then shares the moment before walking onto the pitch, for the Olympic final, “In the line up to walk out towards the pitch, the Dutch were whacking on the scaffolding. I just thought the cocky things – we may be the underdogs and we are not going down without a fight.”  This seemed to be the ignition needed for the fire and passion the girls displayed on the pitch. Shona adds, “That game (the finals) showed hockey for what it really was, it had everything – amazing goals, end to end play, a team on top for most of the game, and of course the amazing penalty shoot out.”

And how did they cope? Well, they had practiced performing under pressure and being able to think clearly. They knew exactly what they were doing, and they managed to do it, despite it being the Olympic final. And this was the moment they had trained for, endlessly. And boy, did they do it! Out of a group of nine girls, five are selected after the game to step up for shuffles, and Hollie is nominated for the first time.

“I was hoping Unsy would score and I wouldn’t have to take one.”

She knew what she was doing though, so calm and collected. She had practiced the night before, she had watched footage of the goalkeeper, she had every move, every step planned in her head the night before. But what was she thinking?

“If you think about the occasion and you think about what this means, and what it could mean, then you’ll let yourself get so nervous, and if you mess up you’ll be kicking yourself for years, so I was like right, that’s just not going to happen.”

She jumped a clear metre in the air, and I think half the nation jumped just as high. I was in a little static caravan in Blakeney, Norfolk and I’m pretty sure it almost fell off its bricks that night. Still humble in the part she played, ensuring that people knew that it was a team win, a collective effort, a squad dream, tireless training hours and a brilliant goalkeeper that made that dream a reality. But as I pointed out to her, they couldn’t have won without your ball in the back of the net. Her advice to her younger self would be to concentrate on your strengths as well as your weaknesses. She made sure that she was the best at passing, the best at hitting and the best at tackling that she could be, doing the basics well, and remembering that the strengths, as well as your weaknesses can be developed.

1000.jpg
Hollie Webb, scoring her penalty shuffle in the Olympic Final, Rio 2016
Photocredit: Scorescan.com

Captain Kate: With Twiggy as spokesperson, the girls agree that Kate is a pioneer for hockey, a phenomenal woman, captain for so long, epitomising what a captain should be. She led by example, set the tone in training and in the gym. She showed professionalism and thats the way she led the team. They state the experience she brought to the side, knowing the right thing to say at the right time, being very wise, was invaluable and she will be sorely missed, a great leader and role model for everyone.

Olympic Gold legacy: The legacy moving into the future will continue with the outstanding work the team, and individuals in the team have engaged in. They will continue to promote the love of their sport around the country, in schools and in hockey clubs. What can the hockey community do to continue to help? Get more people onto the pitch, youngsters playing the game, or people who are getting back to the game.

Their motto was “Be the difference. Create history. Inspire the future” and that is their promise. They will inspire people to get onto the pitch, they will help make hockey more visible, get on tv more, and aim to get it as a main sport into this nation. The more competition there is, the better chance to get better, from grass-roots to national and international level. That is their promise to hockey clubs and schools across the country, not only theirs though, the work of volunteers in clubs is invaluable.  These three girls add,  “What we can do to help you make it sustainable is to keep developing and make it better.”

You can see the live Q + A session on Live Sport Talks Facebook page (Live Sport Talks – FB) or on their website (http://www.livesporttalks.com) along with the other hosted Live Sport Talks.

 

Posted in captain, Coaching, eurohockey, Field Hockey, Hockey, Role model, sport, Women in Sport

Farewell not bye? 

It’s no secret that I like hockey. In fact, I shout it out from the rooftops at every opportunity because I have always believed in hockey as a sport. I started playing at the age of 11 as hockey wasn’t a sport that was accessible to me before (Lacrosse was the school sport of choice). And from the moment I picked up a stick, I loved it. Through playing and now coaching, I continue to love it, to watch it grow and develop and I will tell anyone and everyone who is interested (or not!!) about our sport.

It does slightly annoy me when our sport has been dismissed. For example; During a recent discussion with my former work colleagues pre-Olympics about which sports were going to win medals. The obvious sports were mentioned, Swimming, Athletics, Gymnastics, but when I put out there that the Hockey girls were going to win a medal, if not the Gold, I was shot down in flames; “No-one cares about hockey!” was the snipe, before continuing their conversation.

Well – we certainly showed them!


Photo credit: @Getty Images – Gold medals

It was four years ago, I first had the pleasure of meeting the current GB squad pre London 2012. Running around the country as part of the 35 strong Olympic Torch security team for 70 days, the minutes spent at Bisham Abbey were definitely ones to remember.

Day 53: Bisham abbey – GB Squad 2012 + Torch Security Team

It was the 10th July, 2012. We had no idea where the torch would take us today, or who any of the torchbearers would be, just specific timings, locations and numbers of torchbearers in each location. By day 53, the day’s were pretty routine – up, out and run. We barely had time to work out where we were, just where we needed to be in terms of on the road with our torchbearers. Today we were the running team. There were four main rotations of duties on the relay – running, support (the guys and girls on the pedal bikes), driving or rest.

Our coach was heading into the driveway of Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre and fellow hockey player Gunny [Claire Gunn] shouts, “OMG it’s Crista Cullen, that’s Kate Walsh, wait, is that all the hockey girls?” Scrambling to look out the side of the bus, we could see a lot of Team GB had lined up to see the arrival of the flame, taking a break from their preparations for London 2012.

I was so excited. We had already been the running team with Georgie Twigg on the 24th May, down Henleaze Road, Bristol and we were the support team on the 4th July for Captain Kate [Richardson] Walsh as she ran through Norwich. So to see the national squad of the sport I loved prior to a home Olympic Games was incredible.

I jumped off the bus, probably when it was still moving, I was so excited to see them and wanted to have the opportunity to have a selfie with the squad. Catching up with Annie Panter as she was walking back to resume training, I asked (probably begged if I’m honest!) if I could have a photo with her and the squad.

But at that moment I had a revelation. I had the Olympic flame! Surely they would want a photo with us? Ok, well at least with the Flame? And with that temptation the next thing we knew, Gunny, Neil and I were surrounded by the GB hockey squad holding both the Olympic torch and the Olympic Flame.

A few of the girls asked if they could hold the actual flame, or the lantern at least, including my absolute hero Helen Richardson [Walsh]. I remember giving her strict instructions to hold both the top handle and secure the bottom of the lantern as previously when I had given it to Ben Fogle at the Eden Project, he was waving it around and we were unsure how stable the flame was at the time. So sorry Helen for being so strict!! I didn’t want that flame to go out on my watch, and only a privileged few got to hold the actual Olympic lantern.

I have been lucky to continue to meet the hockey girls along their journey. And they are girls that will help anyone who is passionate about their sport. When I was at a particularly rough crossroads with hockey, Helen Richardson-Walsh provided these wise words. “If it wasn’t for people like you, who give their time, energy and passion to our sport, players like me would never have the opportunities to achieve success” that statement stays with me and will always inspire me to continue to be the best I can be. It picked me up from a dark place and saved me from somewhere I didn’t want to venture. The kindness of a stranger can be an immense gift, a re-motivation and a huge inspiration. A gift I shall always try to pay forward and pass on to everyone I coach and play with.

Supporting each match has become easier with a large number of tournaments being broadcast to watch, however the real buzz is being present, live, living the games, feeling the atmosphere and celebrating or consoling with other fans of our sport. I was there for the Bronze medal match in London, I was at the Commonwealth Games and the European Championships for the highs. I was also at the Hockey Champions trophy and watching the World cup for the lows. Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn!

 The ultimate gift of Gold in the Rio Olympics 2016 was the reward for pain, devastation, hard work, blood, sweat and tears. The road wasn’t always easy, the road often had many pathways, but in the end, you create your own path.

It will be sad to see Kate leave the squad (I’m still keeping fingers crossed Helen will still play!) – When I was captain at Stevenage HC, having taken over the role with seven games to go, in a particularly turbulent season, deep in the relegation zone of the league, I reached out to Kate, Helen and Alex on Twitter to ask if they had any advise on how to avoid relegation. Kate’s response was simple, and is now engraved on the back of my end of season gift from the team that was saved that year.

Play each game like it’s your first, and each second like it’s your last.” And what a last second to for you to play!

  

Thank you for all you have done. We love you and wish you all the best for your future, may it be coaching with me! Haha! 

 

Posted in Field Hockey, FRE Flyers, Hockey, sport, Women in Sport

A few Flyers more…


Tell me a little bit about yourself?  My name is Rickiah and I’m 14 years old. I live in Stratford, Newham in East London. I started playing hockey when I was near the end of Year 5. I’ve been playing hockey for 4 years. My first ever hockey event was Hockey Nation 2013. In the future I would like to be a nurse or have some profession in a career around medicine. 

What was life like before the FRE Flyers?  Before I joined the FRE flyers I just never really did events and things on a Friday. I just went out sometimes with friends to the park to play football,the regular stuff. 

I got involved with the FRE Flyers when I was 10 and it was around December time in 2012.  It was through a family friend called Stevie who is one of the original FRE Flyers. She told my mum about the age I could start playing hockey, and my mum asked me about it so I said I’d give it a try, later knowing it was one of my favourite sports. 

What does the FRE Flyers mean to you?   The FRE Flyers means something great to me. Its like I’m part of a family and I love it! I’ve made so many new friends and have become close to so many people from it. It is really an amazing thing and if I lost it I wouldn’t be me, because I’m comfortable around all the people here and I love them greatly.

The best thing about the FRE Flyers is I get to meet new people and make new friends and travel to different places with them, its honestly a great experience. It helps me when I’m facing problems I have people to turn to and I have a place to escape too, its almost like a relaxant. 

If I didn’t have the FRE Flyers I think I would probably play football a lot and more regularly but other than that, I would most likely have nothing to do. 

Do you play any other sports?  I play other sport sometimes, like football but I’ve never played in a league or anything. I think sport is important because it plays a huge part of who you are, and what you do in life. Its also important for your mentality and your health.  

What are you looking forward to with the FRE Flyers?  I’m looking most forward to traveling to Holland with everyone because it will be a great experience and will be fun.

I think other people should join because they are missing out on a good experience and also having a great amount of friends. 

I wish people from the days when we played at King’s Ford would come back, just to see how everyone is and have a great catch up.

Ewan

Ewan is 16 years old and has been playing hockey for two years. Before the FRE Flyers he spent time with mates or watched TV. 

Ewan joined around Christmas time after some of the FRE Flyers went to East London hockey club to play and they encouraged him to join. 

Ewan says the best thing about the FRE Flyers is I have met many new young people in my area. And the coaching. The coaches help people, individuals if they want to try new things.”

Ewan likes other sports such as rock climbing and thinks sport is important because, “It is hard work”

Withoutthe FRE Flyers Ewan thinks he would just be sleeping. His future plans include to get involved in any opportunities he is offered, travel to other countries and wishes for more funding for the Flyers in order to achieve his plans. 

When asked why other people should join, Ewan answers, “They (FRE flyers) provide many opportunities outside hockey.”


The FRE Flyers train at Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre Friday’s, 6pm – 8pm. For more information about the FRE Flyers: 

Website : http://www.freflyers.co.uk/

Twitter: @FREFlyers 

Facebook: FRE Flyers Club

Virgin Money GivingFRE Flyers Fundraising

 

Posted in Field Hockey, Fitness, Fixtures, FRE Flyers, Hockey, Inclusive sport, Role model, sport, Women in Sport

Mama Jo…

Following on from yesterday’s post from Chris Grant, one of the founders of the FRE Flyers, I caught up with Jo Melchior to find out more about her and her role with the FRE Flyers. 


“I think back to the 6th of August 2012 and smile to myself, as that was the first day I took up the role of Club Development Manager for the FRE Flyers. I have never really been sure of that title, as someone who isn’t impressed with the name on the badge, but rather is a woman whose opinion is formed through the actions of an individual,” Jo explains. 

It’s hard to define a single role for Jo, as she seems to be there for everything, from organising pitches, kit and satellite clubs to social media, crisis management and morale. She commands respect without demand and provides the support the club needs.

“I suppose my remit is to ensure the smooth running of the project, the provision of training, the management of relationships and partnerships, day to day logistics and inevitably the pursuit of funding.

I come from a background in Sport, first as a competitor and subsequently as a teacher / coach / team manager. I have managed large leisure facilities in challenging environments and spent time working in the legal system specialising in child protection. I suppose some of this has prepared me for my most privileged role yet, that of ‘Mama Jo’ to the FRE Flyers a name bestowed on me by the kids themselves.

This entails, providing support of every kind imaginable, sourcing opportunities for training & qualifications, routes to employment, all the regular stuff, but mostly a listening ear, an honest opinion, hopefully some sound advice and sometimes a shoulder to cry on.” 

And that support is not just exclusive to the Flyers themselves, many a time has Jo extended that support. A lynch pin in the network of coaches, a link between the realms. So why does she continue to do her role?  

“Its 4 years on and I am still here, yes its part time in respect of employment, which works for me and the finances of the project, but it’s a full time commitment that I am happy to make, because the personal pride and satisfaction from being around the kids, the coaches and the supporters is immense. I never tire of telling people about what I do for a living and without exception people always react in the same way “wow, that sounds like an amazing job” ….and it is.

Young people often get a ‘bad press’ and sometimes that is the reality of the tiny minority that deserve it. However FRE Flyers has shown me that when given focus and purpose and most of all consistency, even those who might have been at risk of making bad choices in life, make a string of good choices. Our young people have become healthier, happier, smarter, more ambitious and determined and in short are a credit to themselves and their families.”

What’s so good about working with the FRE Flyers? 

“I am lucky to work alongside a terrific team of coaches who all bring a unique flavour to training. They have embraced my philosophy of “challenging, challenging kids”. We expect the core values of FRIENDSHIP, RESPECT & EXCELLENCE to underpin everything we do and have taken what was essentially a ‘vision’ based on Olympic values and created a healthy, vibrant and safe place for those who choose to come along on the journey.”

What should people know about the FRE Flyers? Why does this group continue? 

“We have inevitably lost some along the journey, life and family issues have got in the way, education and work have taken a priority over sport (not the worst thing to happen) and a few have fallen out of love with FRE Flyers, but that’s teenagers for you. The one thing that always remains is that the door never closes, the ‘family ties’ created by the young people may stretch but NEVER break. Once a FRE Flyer, ALWAYS a FRE Flyer.”

Tomorrow we shall be speaking to a couple of the FRE Flyers themselves, so they can tell you why they love hockey and what the FRE Flyers means to them. 

For more information about the FRE Flyers: 

Website : http://www.freflyers.co.uk/
Twitter: @FREFlyers 
Facebook: FRE Flyers Club
Virgin Money Giving: FRE Flyers Fundraising

Posted in Coaching, Field Hockey, FRE Flyers, Hockey, Hockey for Heroes, Inclusive sport, Role model, sport, Women in Sport

FRIENDSHIP…. RESPECT…. EXCELLENCE

The Olympic values; adopted by the FRE Flyers, a sporting group of youngsters from Newham and Tower Hamlets.

FRE Flyers and Hockey for Heroes join forces – June 2016

As the Rio Olympics draw closer, reminiscing back to London 2012, can we say that sport had an impact on the local community? For one legacy group frequently practicing on the Olympic Park, years later, hockey, to them, has become more than just a game.

Throughout this week, I’ll be featuring this group, the FRE Flyers, on the blog. I want to help you get to know this amazing project a little better, who we are, what we do, the principles, origins, founders, funders and successes of the FRE Flyers. I’ll introduce you to some inspiring and creative people, including the kids, coaches and creators. Speaking to some of the original members of the group I’ll find out why hockey is important to them and how the FRE Flyers has helped them and will continue to help others along their journey.

This is what the FRE Flyers means to me…. 


‘Sic wheels Bruv’…

…shouted one of my kids as I’m flying past the Velodrome on my nephew’s scooter, freewheeling my way along the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park heading to the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre for another FRE Flyers training session. The scooter had been subject to ridicule from a majority of my work colleagues, and I had expected ridicule from East London, but for the grand total of £1, it was a real bargain timesaver, and by the sounds of it, a bit of a surprising hit with my kids. The scooter, like the Flyers, represented a freedom; an expression of whatever I wanted to be, of whoever I wanted to be, in a place and an environment that was perfect to do that. 

It didn’t take me long to realise what an amazing bunch of ‘kids’ the FRE Flyers were. I remember that feeling at the first training session with them and I’ve had that feeling ever since. It was the 10thApril 2015, playing on the Olympic hockey pitch at Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre, and there were people everywhere, crowd funders, founders, coaches, guests and Flyers. I felt a little scared at first but this was very short lived as the Flyers took me straight under their wing. I found myself in the thick of it, playing on the blue team, captained by Mike, and alongside two of the Beeston GB quintet Ollie Willars and Tim Whiteman, who were present at training that evening. I don’t even remember if we won or lost, but somehow the result didn’t matter. The feeling was like being caught in a slow motion playback – senses heightened, everyone smiling, working hard for the ball, for each other, their team, enjoying the raw qualities of a Friday night push around with a couple of mates down the local park. It just happened that this was the Olympic park, and it was theirs to own.

They collectively never cease to surprise me. For one reason alone that as a teenager, on a Friday night, I had a million places I’d rather be. But these kids turn out week in week out to train, to pick up a stick and run around for two hours, with friends and family. And they love it. You can tell they are a close group, with a lot of love and respect for each other, they look out for each other, defend each other, push and encourage each other and have a distinct desire to learn and get better whilst having fun. There are kids that battle with physical, mental and emotional challenges but are involved every week. To overcome such personal challenges to stand up in front of a group of their peers and coach the game you’ve been taught is a testament to how far these kids have come. And they are amazing!


Just another training session with the Flyers 

Mama Jo (Melchior) – organiser of all the flyers, sums it up nicely, saying something along these lines.

“You don’t have to be amazing at sport to enjoy it, there are so many other ways to be involved in sport than playing it. That’s what we do at the FRE Flyers, we encourage kids to be involved in any way they can”

From flying solo coaching the kids alone, to taking a team up to Birmingham playing two really tough games against
 Old Sihillians HC,  Orlton & West Warwick

supporting each other through good times and bad. Through this group I’ve found the real meaning of the #HockeyFamily.

Tomorrow we speak to Chris Grant, founder of the FRE Flyers and his story into the origins of this remarkable project. 

For more information about the FRE Flyers: 

Website : http://www.freflyers.co.uk/

Twitter
: @FREFlyers 

Facebook: FRE Flyers Club

Virgin Money Giving
FRE Flyers fundraising

Posted in Coaching, Field Hockey, Fitness, Hockey, Pre-season, sport, Women in Sport

Pairs and Ladders…


Week three and we are cracking on with the pre-season fitness training at St Ives Hockey Club. With the start of the school summer holidays, of course some of the teachers had vanished on holiday, but that didn’t stop an increase in numbers. 

Building on strength and endurance this week, in slightly cooler conditions than last weeks blistering sun, meant the introduction of my favourite bit of kit, the ladders! Here’s how the session went… For those teachers who wish to catch up. 

1. Zig-Zag cones and ladders:

(Set up a channel of 8 cones, approximately 5yards apart at 45degree angle, followed by a set of ladders) 

A: Repeat cycle X 2 – rest 1 minute 

Cones:

  • Sprint forwards jog backwards 
  • Side step squats (touch cone)
  • Sprint (touch cone)

Ladders:

  • Two feet in each box face forward 

Return:

  • Warrior Lunges

B: Repeat cycle X 2 – rest one minute

Cones:

  • Left leg hop 
  • Right leg hop
  • Bunny hops (two feet together, touch the ground)

Ladders:

  • Two feet in each box side facing
  • Change direction on the second round 

Return:

  • Reverse Lunges

2. Groups of Four – In Pairs: One pair runs, one pair exercises then swap.

A: 2 x  400m run / Overs & Unders 

B: 1 x  200m sprint / Burpees

C: 1 x 400m run / pairs ‘high 5’ crunches

D: 3 x 100m sprint / plank splits + twists

E: 4 x 50m sprint / pairs squats & reachback

**all runs should have jog back recovery**

For an extra Brucey bonus, here’s a quick Abs of Steel circuit that we didn’t have time for….

  • 10 x sit-up
  • 10 x bicycle crunch
  • 10 x crocodile walk
  • 10 x scissor crunch

Rest

  • 10 x duck walk
  • 10 x oblique crunches
  • 50m bear crawl
  • 10 x V-crunches

As with any of these sessions, ensure you have a thorough warm up, warm down and stretch to avoid any injuries.