The first NIAS 2018 Hockey Program training will be in Tamworth on Sunday 12th November from 9am to 1.30pm 

2018 Program Staff:

Head Coach:  Andy Davy


Head Coach TBC




Head Coach Helen Willis
Assistant Coach Katrina Rekunow
Trainee Coach Sarah Askey

Hockey NSW:  Blair Chalmers

Application Details

Who is Eligible

Male and Female athletes aged between 16-18 in 2018 (born in 2000 - 2002) live in the Northern Inland region, be a member of a Hockey NSW affiliated association (or be prepared to join).

Selection Process

Up to 20 Male and 20 Female athletes will be offered a place in the Hockey Program based on performance at selection trials and or via talent identification processes. Selection will also be based on your attitude and commitment to Hockey.  Trials will take place on Saturday 21st October in Tamworth, girls from 10am to 12noon and boys from 1pm to 3pm.   

Program year

Scholarship offered is for a 12 month period, November to November with skill based technical and tactical program during Hockey off-season, November 2017 to April 2018 GROWTH workshop in July 2018.  Refer to events on webpage to confirm training sessions.  There will be a minimum of 60 hours of training on the turf. 


Please find below the confirmed dates for the 2018 NIAS Hockey Program.  Please note training sessions will run from 9am to 1.30pm each time.   Please note all training sessions are compulsory, exceptions are made for illness, injury, school excursions and competing at a  Representative Hockey Event.  An email must be sent to your head coach with a copy to the NIAS Office prior.  

Sunday 12th  November – Tamworth

Sunday 26th November – Tamworth

Sunday 10th December – Armidale

Sunday  7th  January – Armidale

Sunday 21st January - Tamworth

Sunday 4th February  - Armidale

Saturday 17th/Sunday 18th February – Inter Academy Weekend – Tamworth - this will include attending a compulsory squad dinner at the West Tamworth Leagues Club with the visiting Academies.  

March dates to be confirmed

Clubs NSW Academy Games 7, 8 and 9th April – Central Coast


Off season skill program is designed to provide players with increased skills and fitness to better prepare them for selection into NSW squads and school representative squads

.Program Outcomes

Selection Criteria

The following specific skills and tests can be conducted as part of the selection process at trials.

  1. 1st Touch quality
  2. Off ball awareness
  3. Off Ball movement
  4. Awareness of role out-letting
  5. Awareness of role pressing
  6. Endurance- 20m shuttle run or similar test
  7. Decision making with the ball
  8. Passion to succeed
  9. Speed
  10. Receiving front
  11. Receiving reverse
  12. Receiving going forward
  13. Receiving- turning with strength
  14. Receiving under pressure
  15. Elimination 1V1
  16. Elimination 2V1
  17. Defensive Skills.


Subjectivity is an unavoidable element in all selections. Athletes who feel the selection criteria has not been adhered to should be aware that NIAS has a formal 'Appeals' process available.

Program content

Skill sessions and camps are held within the region throughout November to April. The skills program follows a structured approach concentrating on a range of individual skills early in the program which lead into team skills involving concept skills and game strategies. Guest coaches ensure that the program remains fresh and interesting and athletes are presented with new ideas and different perspectives to encourage their learning. Fitness sessions focus on the importance of building core strength to improve posture, balance and technique - both speed and an introduction to weights sessions are conducted.  In May-June players are required to attend the NIAS RACE program. This program covers education sessions on sport psychology, sports medicine, nutrition, public speaking, media training, sun protection and career skills. The squad competes in the Annual Clubs NSW Academy Games each April.

The program consists of approximately 10 regional training sessions held in either Armidale and Tamworth.   One session may include an inter Academy visit.    Dates for 2018 program are to be confirmed please refer to events on webpage to confirm training sessions.

Athlete Benefits:

  • Intensive training support by quality regional, guest and state level coaches.
  • Life skills RACE Program-Two 3 hr workshops including dinner for athlete and one parent.
  • NIAS merchandise- training shirt, polo, shorts, cap and socks to be purchased by new athletes, returning athletes may purchase individual items as required. Additional items available for purchase.
  • Individual home training program and structured satellite training sessions
  • Sport Science fitness testing and support.
  • 1 Ticket to annual awards night.
  • Travel Assistance to attend NIAS regional training sessions and camps.
  • Financial assistance if selected into state team.
  • Fully Paid Athlete Levy scholarships due to financial hardship available.

Athlete Commitments

  • Attend all program activities.
  • Hockey is no 1 sport while on scholarship.
  • Be committed to a holistic approach to their development, both on and off the field.
  • Comply with the training requirements and respond in a positive manner to any suggestion or criticism.
  • Maintain an appropriate performance standard to continue to receive a scholarship.
  • Behave and dress in a professional and dignified manner when representing the NIAS and its sponsors.
  • Wear Academy apparel when representing the Academy at events.
  • Make yourself available (within reason) to sponsors and the media for promotional purposes.
  • Adhere to NIAS anti-Doping policy.
  • Maintain communication with NIAS and coaching staff as required.


Athlete levy:  $165 GST inclusive.  This levy covers training camps, coaching support, GROWTH day, fitness testing, Awards Night ticket)
Sports Trip:  $165 GST inclusive
Academy Games 
$220.00 GST inclusive
Hockey Clothing Pack:  $225 GST inclusive (ordered from and paid to SportsPower Armidale, includes NIAS polo shirt, cap, training shirt, training shorts, tracksuit pants, hoodie and ankle socks).  Additional NIAS merchandise can be purchased from SportsPower Armidale.

Athlete levy grants are available for financially disadvantaged athletes.


Open Date: 28 August 2017
Close Date: 6 October 2017

For further information please contact the NIAS office on 67 662526 or email

Applications currently closed