Maddie Hinch Celebrates HockeyFest

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With HockeyFest in full swing in the wake of Team GB’s Olympic gold medal success, we visited the grand opening of the new Bromley & Beckenham HC facility to join in the party. The nation’s new favourite goalie, Maddie Hinch, came along to test out the new pitch, coach the team and give some advice to the club’s young players…

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We spoke to Maddie in the middle of her whirlwind fortnight since returning from Rio, making appearances on The One Show, Sunday Brunch, Radio 2, Sky Sports and The Johnathan Ross Show. Despite her new showbiz calendar, she told the crowd that it was the grass roots, local community events such as HockeyFest that she had been looking forward to most since winning a gold medal:

“To think that we’ve inspired a generation through the Olympic success is massive to us – it’s actually the main thing we want to do more than anything: to inspire the future and get hockey on the map, to get more people picking up sticks is really important, and the medal is just a bonus.” Maddie Hinch

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What is HockeyFest?

HockeyFest is a series of events at hockey clubs all over the country during August and September. These social sports days, hosted by Great Britain Hockey in partnership with Notts Sport, are designed to encourage players of all ages and experiences to get involved, pick up a stick, and join in the hockey community. Everyone from pros to newbies are welcome to try something new and have a bit of fun in friendly atmosphere, with clubs organising BBQs, bake offs, off-pitch challenges, fancy dress and games.

“My favourite thing about HockeyFest is the fact that there’s people here picking up a stick for the very first time. It’s an easy opportunity for people to just come down and experience hockey without having to sign up for anything. You can just literally get down here and enjoy it and there’s a bit of a party atmosphere which makes it all the better!” Maddie Hinch

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How can I get involved?

The easiest way to get involved is to come along to a HockeyFest near you, and give the sport a go for free.

“For hockey newcomers I would just recommend getting down there and make sure you try all the different positions. Don’t just focus on being a defender, goalie or forward, try it all, because you never know what you might suit!” Maddie Hinch

Find out where your nearest event is here, and join in the fun!

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Sam Ward counts down to the Olympics

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We spoke to our Hockey Ambassador, Sam Ward, ahead of his first Olympic Games to see how he and Team GB are preparing for their summer in Rio…

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1. Team GB…

Q: What is your favourite memory from previous Olympics?

A: I remember watching 2012 and saying ’I want to be at the next Olympics’. Now it has become true it is the one memory which really sticks in my head.

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2. Career…

Q: If you weren’t an international hockey player, what career would you have chosen?

A: If I could have chosen a career I would have been a cricketer. If I couldn’t be that though I would be a car salesman.

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3. Music…

Q: What music helps you get into zone before a match?

A: Anything with a strong beat/rhythm tends to get me going.

 

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4. Diet & Training…

Q: Does your diet or routine change when building up to a major international tournament?

A: It doesn’t really differ at all throughout the year. We stick to what food helps you to perform at the best of your ability, apart from pre tournaments we maybe focus more on tactical elements.

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5. Tour Life…

Q: Which country did you enjoy touring the most?

A: My favourite place we have been recently is Australia.

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6. Travel Essentials…

Q: What are your top five travel essentials you couldn’t live without?

A:  My hockey stick, trainers, phone, Ipad, and a travel adapter!

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7. Globetrotting…

Q: How do you overcome jetlag when playing in different countries?

A: We have very good support staff who advise when is best to sleep and not to sleep to help recover from it as fast as possible.

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8. Rest…

Q: When touring abroad do you get time soak up the local culture?

A: Not very often as the main thing is to perform as well as we can on the pitch, so rest is the main priotiry in down time.

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9. Climates and Altitudes…

Q: Do different climates and altitudes affect you the way in which you prepare for a match?

A: On game day it does not affect what we do. But for a tournament for example we may do acclimatisation training before we leave in preparation.

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10.  Memory Lane…

Q: What is your earliest sporting memory?

A: I remember scoring for my school hockey team when I was 6!

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11.  Advice…

Q: What would your top tip be to any young and aspiring Hockey player?

A: Never give up, if you believe then you can definitely achieve.

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12. Rio 16…

Q: How does it feel to be chosen as part of the Great Britain Olympic team?

A: I can’t put into words how amazing it feels. It was always a childhood dream. But it’s not about just being selected, it’s about performing and winning a medal.

 

 

Drone Diary

Drone Diary

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The Notts Sport team have been getting to grips with the latest development in photographic technology: The DJI Phantom 3 Drone. We asked our Twitter followers to choose its name, and ‘The Drone Ranger’ won in a landslide victory!

This month The Drone Ranger has been all over the country, photographing  completed facilities at Etone College; Holyrood Academy; Gillingham Anchorians HC; Holcombe HC; Hackney’s Mabley Green Park; and Oundle School. This fantastic bit of kit enables us to take bird’s-eye-view images and videos at a height of 500m, allowing us to capture the entirety of our pitches and playgrounds from the sky for the first time.

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Keep a lookout on social media using the tag #DroneDiary to see where in the UK The Drone Ranger will pop up next.

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Oundle School, Northamptonshire

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England Hockey Selects Notts Sport As First Ever Official Facilities Partner

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Leading synthetic surfacing supplier Notts Sport has taken its support for grassroots hockey to a whole new level – after being chosen as England Hockey’s Official Facilities Partner.

The new partnership will see Notts Sport work closely with England Hockey to ensure that clubs, schools and local authorities can deliver the best new and refurbished hockey facilities to help grow the game in communities up and down the country.

The announcement comes just two years after Notts Sport became Approved Supplier to England Hockey for Facility Design, Advice & Supply, and provides an emphatic endorsement of the quality of service the company provides.

As well as Official Facilities Partner, Notts Sport is also proud to announce it is the Official Club Weekend Partner of England Hockey from 2015. This fantastic nationwide event runs annually each September, providing a series of events at hockey clubs around the country which encourages people to give the sport a try and enhance the relationship between clubs and their communities.

Notts Sport Sales Director Duncan Bennett says: “As proud supporters of the grassroots game, we’re absolutely delighted to have been selected as England Hockey’s first ever Official Facilities Partner.

“During our two years as an England Hockey approved supplier, we have provided our unrivalled service to deliver high-quality hockey facilities to more clubs, schools and local authorities than ever before – and it’s a tremendous honour to have our work recognised with the award of Official Partner status.”

Jonathan Cockcroft, Commercial & Membership Director for England Hockey, adds: “We are delighted that Notts Sports has become both our Official Club Weekend and Official Facilities Partner. Having worked together to improve hockey facility provision over the past two years, we have been impressed by their extensive knowledge and collaborative approach.”

Further details can be found by clicking here: England Hockey PartnershipFeatured image

30th Anniversary Inspires Charitable Year For Notts Sport

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Notts Sport are one of the country’s market leaders in the provision of synthetic sport & play surfacing and to mark the company’s successful heritage, some of the Notts Sport employees embarked on various challenges all in aid of the Lord’s Taverners Charity, an organisation set up to, in their words, “give young people a sporting chance”. Notts Sport was keen to make their 30th year in business one to remember, and no doubt that was the case for Mark Wood and Josh Harnden who endured a Screen Shot 2015-01-06 at 13.15.09gruelling 200 mile bike ride from the London Eye to the Eiffel Tower over 3 long days over the summer. But it was not just Mark and Josh who were prepared to push themselves to the limit for charity. Company Director Duncan Bennett took part in the London Marathon in April whilst a team consisting of Rebecca Wood, Kirsty Bishop, Laura Bennett and Steve Foxon braved the mud, wet and cold as they took on the 5K Wild Warrior X-Runner – an outdoor obstacle course which is not for the faint hearted! Simon Glover and Kevin King walked up hill and down dale as they travelled 96 miles along the West Highland Way from Milngavie all the way to Fort William in the Scottish Highlands and Janet Slatter and Notts SpoScreen Shot 2015-01-06 at 13.15.24rt chairman Shaun Patrick also raised money for losing weight throughout 2014 all for the Lord’s Taverners Charity. Notts Sport fully embraced the charity spirit in 2014 by the free installation of a child’s play area in Walton, Leicestershire. Notts Sport replaced the damaged and aging wet pour rubber area with their very own synthetic surface, greatly improving the image and more importantly the safety of the play area. Screen Shot 2015-01-06 at 13.15.40 Notts Sport is no stranger to charity work either. In 2012 the company played a key part in raising £15,000 for the Harley Staples Cancer Trust as they transformed Loughborough College’s synthetic pitch into a cricket venue to play host to a non-stop 150 hour long cricket match. The ground staff were all in agreement that the Notts Sport Powerplay Instant Cricket System was crucial to the success of the event as it withstood some extreme weather conditions. By the end of their 30th year, “Team Notts Sport” had managed to raise a fantastic £7,003.75 for the Lord’s Taverners Charity, with everyone doing their bit for a very good cause. Notts Sport continues to be a leading player in the synthetic turf market with prosperous relationships as Approved System Suppliers to the England & Wales Cricket board and as Official Partners to England Hockey.Screen Shot 2015-01-06 at 13.15.52