President's Report - Half Year
With 2020 coming to an end, I write to update you on your association’s activity and preparations for the future.
While Covid-19 has caused significant disruption to training and prevented competition from taking place in England since March 2020, clubs have worked extremely hard to keep people participating in the sport, and current registrations now total 1277 people;
- Training Only 922
- Player 77
- Officers & Officials 254
- Life Members 24
As a result of players predominantly being registered as Training Only, the associations revenue has dramatically fallen, but in the current circumstances it is extremely positive that we seem to have lost so few players and people, that do the work to ensure our sport survives into the future. So really well done to all those people in Clubs working so hard in this extraordinary time!
National Development Squads
To support the efforts of clubs to keep people engaged in our sport, National Development Training for Levels 1 to 3 has been decentralised and is now delivered monthly within each region, enabled by the additional funding from each Regional Association.
This regional approach has been successful, with even more players attending sessions in aggregate than pre-Covid, so as more players and coaches are benefiting from the great job being done by our National Coaching Director (Carlos Amaral), with the help of volunteers within each region, it is likely to be continued into the future, with Levels 4 and 5 organised on the same basis as numbers grow in future seasons.
Coach & Referee Accreditation
Having well trained Coaches and Referees is key to improving participant experience at all levels of our sport and rules requiring each club to provide appropriately qualified referees for each team they enter into a competition, with an Accredited Coach in attendance to play (Season 2021/22) were passed at the 2020 Annual General Meeting of the Association.
Both the Committees of Rink Hockey Referees (Chairman - Karl Wilson) and Coaches (Chairman – Carlos Amaral) have worked incredibly hard to prepare courses that are now with the Marketing Sub-Committee (Andy Witton), who is putting them into a high quality online tool that can be accessed 24/7 via any computer or mobile device.
This massive undertaking is a credit to all involved and launch is anticipated as follows;
- Coaching General Principals (How to Coach): Late January
- Coaching Level 1: Late January
- Referee Level 1: Late January
- Coaching Level 2: Mid February
- Referee Level 2: Mid February
- Coaching Level 3: Late February
- Referee Level 3: Late February
WorldSkate Europe has advised the following tentative dates for European competitions, with eligibility based on players 2020 age and some dates may be subject to change due to Covid-19;
- Under 17 Male Portugal, Luso 23 to 30 August 2021
- Under 19 Male Italy, TBA 20 to 26 September 2021
- Senior Female Portugal, Melada 4 to 11 October 2021
- Under 17 Female Portugal, Malada December TBA
These events have ‘Elite Status’ under government Covid guidelines, that permit certain exemptions for athletes. The National Coaching Director is taking this into account and has created training plans that will soon be shared with squad members.