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Netball a great gender diverse sport for kids

Coach Liz Boniello getting ready for her session with St Gregory’s Primary School

Image: Coach Liz Boniello getting ready for her session with St Gregorys Primary School

Netball Australia has delivered over and above for St Gregory’s Primary School in Victoria, with a Legend of the Game and veteran of nine tests for Australia, Liz Boniello (nee Taverner) coaching their NetSetGO Sporting Schools program.

Liz visits the school on Thursdays delivering a lunch time NetSetGO session with year five and six students.

“Following a ‘nudge’ from a friend of mine who teaches at the school, it was a perfect fit for me to teach netball during these school hours, since completing the Sporting Schools Coaches Workshop conducted by Netball Victoria, last year,” Liz said.

“Sporting Schools is a fantastic grassroots program for school children and I love coaching the kids,” she said.

“While I might be biased towards netball, it is a terrific game for girls AND boys because it’s all about tight teamwork – working as a unit to move the ball form one end of the court to the other when in attack (aiming to score a goal) and again working together in defence with the aim to intercept or force an error on the opponent. It’s a skilful and fun sport for everyone.

“The great thing about the Sporting School Program NetSetGO lesson plans is that it’s a smart platform to introduce a variety of age appropriate netball skills via modified games and activities.  And the kids have really loved it because they are all actively involved and most importantly having fun with their peers within a school environment.

“More importantly though is getting kids active and giving them a break from the classroom. A fun attitude hits the court but at the same time, I’m watching them and observing their skills and techniques and teaching them how to improve their fundamental movement skills.

“The benefits of the Sporting Schools Program is that not everyone has played or participated in that chosen sport so you have children not only learning a new sport or a new skill, they’re also being challenged and getting out and active (and away from screens) and it has the potential to inspire them to get involved in sport beyond the school gate through their local sport club,” Liz said.

Sporting Schools is a $100 million Australian Government initiative to get more children playing more sport, before, during and after school. Want to run a Netball program at your school? Check out all the details on the Netball Australia page.