Tokyo 2020 Olympics inspires players to attend Bishop's Stortford's Vitality Back to Hockey sessions ahead of new East League season
Bishop's Stortford have capitalised on the Olympic buzz by holding successful Vitality Back to Hockey sessions.
Around 18 players – including one new starter – got involved in the sport again having not picked up a hockey stick for anywhere between 10 and 34 years.
The club first ran Back to Hockey sessions after London 2012 when Team GB's women's side won bronze.
And plenty of people were inspired to fall back in love with the game this summer after the women captured bronze once again in Tokyo while the men reached the quarter-finals.
"The Olympics is a perfect time to start Vitality Back to Hockey as it primes people to get active again," said ladies' club captain Richard Temple.
"Vitality Back to Hockey has always been personally important to me as I stopped playing hockey for 15 years and only returned to the game in 2004, so I have some empathy with how lapsed and new players may be feeling. It was also my pathway into getting qualified as a lead club coach and it's great to see the movement from people being shy and apprehensive about playing to becoming more confident and starting to 'own their play'.
"We've also seen really good friendship groups being formed over the years and, of course, we'd like as many Vitality Back to Hockey players to progress to regular club hockey."
Stortford's sides – they now have eight women's and six men's teams – start their 2021-22 East League campaigns this Saturday.