England Netball’s superb recent win in the Commonwealth Games final was another sign of the sport’s growing momentum on these shores, and there’s never been a better time to get involved.
Netball is growing fast
Tracey Neville’s team stunned the favourites and home nation Australia by one point, and it felt like a culmination of concerted efforts over recent years to grow the game of netball in the UK. 2017 saw a remarkable 44% increase in participation, with around 1.4 million women and girls now taking part each season. On a typical weekend there are now more women playing netball than there are men playing rugby union.
That growth in participation is reflected in a boom in attendances. The 2000 Super Cup Grand Final was played out in front of a paltry 50 people, and now crowds of over 7000 are commonplace at Superleague games. Sky Sports have been covering Superleague and international games since November 2016, and that exposure is undoubtedly another factor, with many clubs now reporting waiting lists and a huge spike in interest.
Widening the sport’s appeal
For too long netball was viewed as the preserve of schoolgirls only, but now an abundance of variations on the game has widened its appeal, with people of all ages able to play. The likes of Walking Netball, Fast Net and other formats enable people of all ages and of varying levels of fitness play netball, and help maintain the momentum around the traditional format of the game.
There are a number of ways to get involved in the sport – whether it’s playing, coaching, officiating, volunteering or just spectating. Check out this guide to getting involved from England Netball.
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