Young Borderers impress top coach

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Over the past few weeks, Borders hockey coaches and players have been fortunate to gain some world-class coaching experience from one of Scotland and Great Britain’s high-performance coaches.

Colin Clarke, who in the past has been Scotland under-18 girls’ coach and was part of the Scotland Women’s Commonwealth Games coaching team, has visited Tweedbank several times to deliver 12 hours of coaching sessions to the region’s Performance and Development squads, along with their coaches.

Clarke has recently been involved as coach of the GB Youth Olympic squad and he brought a wealth of experience as well as current skills and techniques to the young Borderers.

His sessions included both practical on-pitch sessions and theoretical discussions in the hub building at Tweedbank, which is proving to be a valuable addition to the sports complex in terms of coach education.

The practical sessions focused on attacking and defending skills, ball carrying, elimination, passing, shooting and tackling.

The discussion inside revolved around ‘Learning from the Commonwealth Games’, ‘What attributes make an international player and how to identify these at a young age’ and ‘Tactical set-ups’.

Clarke was very impressed with the young Borders players and praised them on their willingness to learn, their ability to take on board instruction and develop as players and how they were confident in putting themselves out of their comfort zones and really challenging themselves. The feedback from the course was extremely positive with both players and coaches appreciating the quality of delivery and the inspirational manner in which Clarke delivered each session.

Borders Hockey Development is very grateful to BSLT for supporting this initiative which took over this year from the annual coaching conference.