On Saturday 26th June, Palmers Green Netball Club put on a Netball Skills Day for their members and encouraged other girls from Enfield to take part. Not only did the event include netball drills and matches, they organised an awards ceremony to acknowledge the best players of the day. The event was funded by a Small Grant awarded to the club by the Jack Petchey Foundation.
Studies have shown that only half the number of girls compared to boys take part in sports, with girls tending to drop out of sports during their teens. The Netball Skills Day was devised to introduce more girls to the sport and encourage them to continue playing throughout their teenage years. The club printed advertisements in the local paper, sent leaflets to local schools and made the event free so that girls from all backgrounds were able to join in. On the day, 37 girls attended (enough for five regular teams)! .
After registration and a warm up, the girls were split into groups of six and were each allocated different drills to take part in. Each group got to try the various drills and the coaches adapted them to each group’s skill levels. The club coaches said “we designed the drills around basic netball skills while reinforcing the importance of working as a team, good communication and having a positive attitude.”
After the drill exercises, the girls were split into five different teams and played in a mini tournament. The teams were all selected at random which allowed the club members to mix with the new players. Everyone taking part was given a t-shirt at the start of the event to make sure that they all felt part of their team and that the new players didn’t feel divided from the existing members. The new players integrated into the teams really well and the coaches reinforced the importance of working with your team through good communication and positive encouragement.
The day finished with an awards presentation, with a trophy given to the Tournament Winners, Top Shooter, Top Passer, Most Interceptions and for Best Sportsmanship. The club received very positive feedback from the new players and many of them have shown an interest in signing up for the club this September.
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