Minis News & Info
Welcome to the news and information page for the Minis section of the club!
Here you will find links to our regular newsletters as well as other useful information
Old Loughtonians Mini Hockey covers school Years 1 to 7 and children can join at any age or stage during that period . Whilst some players may have been playing for a while we are pleased to welcome players at all of these ages with no Hockey Playing experience.
We highly recommend that all levels have mouthguards and shin pads. Suitable clothing and trainers of course , astros are an idea but ordinary trainers are normally fine too at this stage. We have a number of sticks to lend if players do not have their own.
We train from 9:30 most Saturdays of the season which starts in early September and ends towards the end of May. Please refer to our Website news , Facebook or Twitter @miniloughts for the exact details of this towards the start of the Season.
School years 2-3 finish at 10:30 - years 4-7 at 11:00.
In order to join simply turn up before registration and speak to our Team on the Front Desk and they will direct you to the Coach that covers the appropriate age group and run through the collection of details and expectations with you . It is not absolutely necessary to become a member during your first month as we recognise that sometimes children will change their mind but after that we would expect them to become members.
We look forward to Welcoming you into our Club .
Team Selection for Matches at U8/10/12’s
Primarily the purpose of matches is to get as many children within an age group, or that are capable of playing safely within an age group, playing hockey.
We run 2 Mixed U8's, 2 Girls and 2 Boys U10’s and 2 Girls and 3 Boys U12 teams.
All Mini’s within these age groups will have a chance to play in matches. We run A teams which are selected on ability by the coaches and B teams where all are welcome and everyone will have the opportunity to play. Whether you have just picked up a stick for the first time or are aspiring to make the national finals you are more than welcome.
Selection will be based on the following criteria in the order listed:-
- Players are fully paid up members.
- Behaviour at training is acceptable.
- Players or parents have advised of availability when requested.
- Attendance at training is regular (if there are issues with ability to train parents need to notify coaches so they are aware of the reason)
When the coaches meet they will allocate children to teams predominantly by age group and then by ability.
However, they will remain mindful of trying to play all Minis’ at the correct level so not to dent confidence or limit players own progress.
Where it is possible decisions will take into account parents circumstances and try to accommodate these. For example if siblings are playing for another age or gender group efforts will be made to try and keep them at the same venue in order that both siblings get to play.
If teams within an age group are short of players coaches will select players from the age group below who they consider capable of playing at that level. It is also possible to mix genders. No Year 1 or 2’s will be included in U10’s matches, as advised by England Hockey.
Players/parents will then be notified of the teams they are selected for with at least 1 weeks’ notice.
Training in age groups
Minis will be asked to train within their age group:
- Seedlings School Years 1-2 Green Pitch Near End
- U8’s School Years 2-3 Green Pitch Far End
- U10’s School Years 4-5 Girls Pitch 1 / Boys Pitch 2
- U12’s School Years 6-7 Girls Pitch 1 / Boys Pitch 2
There may be exceptional circumstances where a Y3 Mini is asked to train on Pitch 1 or 2. This will be at the Coaches discretion and they will let Parents know if this is the case. There is no need for Parents to approach Coaches about this, if children are ready to move up they will be notified.
As part of the progression from the Green to Blue pitches, Year 3’s will be taken to Pitch 1 or 2 between the February Half Term and Easter to begin the integration into the older age groups before the end of the season. The exact timing of this will depend on group ability and Coach availability. Parents will be informed when this is about to happen.
Please don’t approach Coaches during training sessions about moving up groups or match information as they need to concentrate on delivering the session. If you need to speak to any coach, please give them time to finish the session and then speak to them. This is very important for Health and Safety reason as well as delivering good hockey.
Mini Coaches / Managers
On a regular Saturday there will be between 12 – 15 Adult coaches/helpers and 6-8 U14/U16 Junior helpers. They give regular commitment which helps all children access enjoyable sessions.
As an England Hockey affiliated club we have an England Hockey Sessional Coach (old Level 2) on site during training sessions. We are fortunate that both Jay Fox and John Wright both fulfil this obligation. They, along with Chris Gladman (Director of Coaching at Old Loughts) coordinate the sessions on each of the pitches and provide guidance on which aspects each age group needs to focus on.