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Netball Central Zone Launches Innovative New Fun Days

Netball Central Zone Launches Innovative New Fun Days

Media Release
29 September 2014

Netball Central Zone will be holding the first of a new series of Netball Fun Days on 1st October at Arena Manawatu in Palmerston North. The Fun Day is designed to give young players a taste of Netball New Zealand’s new Junior Netball Programme which is currently being introduced by Netball Centres nationwide.

The event is being staged in conjunction with Netball Manawatu with support from Sport Manawatu and is part of Netball Manawatu’s ‘Month of Netball’ which will see them hosting events throughout the month of October in the lead-up to the Silver Ferns game at Palmerston North on 31st October.

Netball Central Zone’s Junior Development Officer Stacey Sharp believes the new programme will be an ideal way to introduce the game to the next generation of aspiring young players.

“The new Junior Netball Programme is focused on providing children aged 5-12 years of age with a safe and fun introduction to the game,” she explained. “Netball has joined the growing list of sports that have modified their traditional game to cater for the needs of their junior players, e.g. rugby, football, tennis, basketball, water polo, volleyball and hockey.

“Small-sided games with modified rules are run alongside skill activities to support fundamental skill development. These modified games are tailored to meet the needs of our young players, using smaller balls, lower hoops and a smaller court to play on.

“Young players get to touch the ball more often in these modified games. The more times they touch the ball, the more opportunities they’re given to practice those basic skills and increase their skill level. The emphasis has been on developing those fundamental movement and ball skills, introducing basic netball skills and providing a game that grows with the players.

“As we all know, netball is a very complex, tactical game. These small-sided games allow our junior players to make more, less complicated decisions with fewer players on court, modified positions and no complex rules to consider, which will all help to enhance their decision-making skills.

“The Fun Ferns programme was skill development based. The Junior Programme introduces players to the game by adding a modified game of netball to the end of each weekly session. This means that our youngest players actually get to play netball from day one. They have the opportunity to practice passing, catching and shooting from the very first session.”

The Fun Day events last for around two hours and the next locations on the schedule are Lower Hutt on 18th October and Masterton on 1st November – please contact Netball Hutt Valley or Netball Wairarapa for more information on their respective Fun Days.

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