Hockey is a team sport where players compete to score a ball or puck into their opponent's goal by hitting it with a stick. Generally, there are 11 players per team. In New Zealand hockey is commonly played as a school sport in the winter months, with the season beginning in May and registration usually around February or March. However, summer competitions exist your local hockey clubs can provide details.
A video of Hockey for Kids
Information on hockey for kids in new zealand
Is hockey right for your kids?
Learning to play hockey will benefit your children in a number of ways. Hockey can:
- Improve fitness
- Promote team skills
- Create a chance to make new friends
- Teache discipline
- Build confidence and self-esteem
Getting your kids started
Most New Zealand primary schools offer field hockey as part of their sports programme. Additionally, there are a number of private clubs that provide a chance for kids to learn and compete in league matches. The New Zealand Inline Hockey Association is New Zealand's premier field hockey body, and it organises competitions for children aged five and up. It also offers coaching programmes and lessons.
Ice hockey is another sport whichis growing in popularity in New Zealand. This form of the game is played on ice rinks using skates, and it has a reputation for being quite a lot more physical than field hockey. Ice hockey has its own league, New Zealand Ice Hockey Association, and organized tournaments. Other forms of this sport are roller hockey, which uses rollerblades to emulate the flow of ice hockey, and indoor hockey, which is similar to field hockey but has a smaller field and is even faster.
To get started, your child will need:
- A hockey stick (make sure you buy the right size for their height - check online)
- Specially designed boots (running shoes will be fine at first)
- Protective gear such as shin pads
- Comfortable clothing to run around in
Programme fees vary from around $25 - $120 per term, depending on the club. As hockey is a winter sport it's best to enrol your child at the end of summer to ensure they get a spot. If playing outdoors, remember sunscreen and a hat.
Don't miss these hockey stars and events!
The Ford National Hockey League is the premier league for hockey in New Zealand. New Zealanders Hayden Shaw and Anna Lawrence are both well-known internationally for their hockey talent.
Are your kids interested in hockey? Try the ActiveActivities directory for a list of kids' hockey clubs near you!