Hockey Wales CEO, Helen Bushell explains why the School Sport Survey is highly important when looking at the future of Hockey in Wales.
“The School Sport Survey is a really important piece of the jigsaw that we use when making decisions about the future of hockey in Wales.
It is essential that we understand the thoughts of young people in relation to our sport, to ensure that we get things right in the future. The school sport survey provides a significant and relevant part of the picture that helps us to do just this.
In the past sport has not traditionally been particularly effective at using evidence based data to develop and progress. The School Sport Survey, amongst other pieces of research and data, brings us away from this situation, meaning that we no longer have to rely on assumptions, and can be certain that we are in touch with demand and current trends.
The previous survey’s data has allowed us to challenge our traditional views and perspectives, helping us to break down barriers that may have previously stopped us from addressing specific issues or targeting efforts in a particular way.
From gaining that insight into participation levels and demand across different areas of the country we have been able to identify where resources need to be targeted and relationships built.
For example the last survey highlighted that there was very limited participation on the Isle of Anglesey, targeting efforts and resources such as Hockey Agent time and focussed effort from the North Wales team and clubs since these results has helped us engage schools into our primary school participation opportunities through 4689 – the new route into Hockey.
We are all well aware of the crucial element that links between schools and community clubs have in allowing a child to progress within a sport. The survey also allows us to target and better develop these networks between community clubs and schools, helping to identify where new relations need to be created, or where partnerships can be furthered.
The last survey’s data gave us a good starting point in gaining a real understanding of our landscape and helped motion change for significant improvements. We are now looking forward the results from this year’s survey, so we can track our progress and continue developing our plans.