Quicksticks hockey is a gentler introductory version of the game that enables kids to get involved from an earlier age and without any of the fears that can affect some youngsters new to hockey…
Easing kids into hockey
I was an uber-keen sportsman at school, and was a fanatical competitor in almost all of the sports on the syllabus. Practically nothing would stop me. Football, cricket, basketball, athletics, rugby – all sports that pose a physical challenge, but challenges I was always enthusiastic to meet. But there was one sport that terrified me. Hockey.
I played it once as an 11 year old and that was enough for me. Tons of sticks flying everywhere, my ankles and shins in constant and grave peril, and a rock hard, heavy ball that frankly I didn’t want to go anywhere near.Sean – KUDOS Sports
Quicksticks is England Hockey Board’s introductory version of the game designed, amongst other things, to alleviate some of those fears Sean had as a child. Aimed specifically at 7-11 year olds, it is just 4-a-side and uses a bigger, lighter and much safer ball.
An inclusive game that keeps kids more engaged and encourages personal development
Much like netball’s introductory game, High 5 Netball, Quicksticks espouses a more inclusive approach. During a game, the children will rotate through the roles of player, team manager and umpire – a means of keeping the kids more engaged more of the time, as well as allowing them to view the sport from different perspectives. This also encourages personal development, giving the kids an opportunity to develop leadership skills.
A summary of the rules
Goalkeepers, be it in football or hockey, probably have to be a little bit insane. Happily for the children, a game of Quicksticks does not include goalkeepers – making it a safer game and, of course, easier to score.
A number of rules from 11-a-side hockey have been removed or simplified, making Quicksticks much easier to understand and to play. Moreover, it results in fewer stoppages which, again, helps to keep the kids more involved and engaged with more playing time.
The fact it is only 4-a-side is another factor in the increased levels of engagement – players are more involved, see more of the ball and enjoy more playing time.
We think Quicksticks is a fantastic means of introducing kids to hockey. If you run a hockey club and would like to introduce this version of the sport, check out the Quicksticks website for more information on how to implement and deliver it.
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