Growing hockey stars

East London Hockey Academy, formerly known as Mini Hockey, has been the starting point for many young hockey players over the years.

Coaching co-ordinator Hayden Kraemer said they run weekly training sessions for boy and girl players aged five 5 to 14 on a Saturday morning at Buco Astro Park in Bunkers Hill.

“We believe that all players should have the opportunity to grow their skills and love for the game.
“The academy went through a re-branding in 2016 to the now East London Hockey Academy. Before, we ran under the East London Mini Hockey banner that has been around for 30 years.

“We have a team of dedicated coaches who that run the training sessions on a Saturday  morning from 7.30am to 8.45am. Our coaches are graded in both South African Hockey Association (Saha) Ccoaching and Uumpiring levels.
“Many coaches are also involved in local school structures and coach at club level,” Kraemer said.

He said some coaches have even gone on to coach and umpire at provincial level.

“In 2018, Last year we started an exciting venture whereby we decided to extending our training groups to a weeknight to allow for higher age groups. We started our Performance Academy that now runs on a Wednesdays from night, 5.30pm to 6.30pm.”

Kraemer said the academy has age-group training to help extend a players’ ability on the field.

“At the end of each season, we do put players through an overall skills assessment, and then we award the players levels with regard to their skill levels.

“All the players eagerly await this assessment as it shows them the level of growth they have gone through.

“We are planning on growing and helping other schools in growing their knowledge and skills around the game of hockey,” he said.

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