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Player Pathway

Single System (Long Term Athlete Development)

After extensive consultation and planning, England Hockey launched its Single System in 2009. The Single System is the development pathway which provides players of all abilities from 12-18 years old, with the opportunity to reach their full potential. The pathway aims to provide opportunities for participants that are fair, equitable and consistent across the country. It aims to ensure that a suitable level of competition is offered at an appropriate stage of development, to maximise a player’s chance of achieving their best, whether that is as a school, club or international player.

Progressing Along the Player Pathway

As young players progress through playing In2Hockey within their club or school, the next step on the player pathway would be to attend a Junior Development Centre (JDC). A JDC is a local training centre for U13 to U17 age groups. JDCs are open to any hockey player who has been nominated by their club, school or coach. A coach or teacher can nominate a player to attend an assessment for a JDC if and when they think it is appropriate for the player’s development.

JDCs are delivered primarily by County Hockey Associations. They may also be delivered by local Hockey Development Groups that can include a club, school or coaching company that deliver on their behalf. These groups appoint the coaches and administrators or managers to organise and deliver all activity. The administrator or manager will be the main point of contact for nominations, dates and times of sessions and the coaches will be responsible for the training and match play. Information on how to get in touch with your local centre can be found at www.englandhockey.co.uk/singlesystem in the ‘JDC locations’ page.

From a JDC, players can progress into Junior Academy Centre’s (JACs) and then into Junior Regional Performance Centre’s (JRPCs). Ultimately, the England U16 and England U18 squads are selected from players who attend JRPC’s.

Consistent Delivery in Schools and Clubs through the Player Syllabus

The Single System features a player syllabus which has been designed to ensure there is a consistent delivery approach throughout the initial stages of player development, whether in a club, school or JDC setting, and that the techniques, skills and games played are developmentally appropriate. The content within the In2Hockey resources is fully aligned with the Single System Player Syllabus, and the aim is to ensure that the version of the game and the delivery is consistent for the young player if and when they choose to make the transition from school to club.

As players progress through the In2Hockey sessions they will be moving through the content of the Player Syllabus which is split into five areas of focus:

  • Core Skills e.g. Individual ball carrying and passing skills
  • Movement Skills e.g. running, turning and stopping
  • Small Unit Play e.g. 1v1, 2v1, 2v2 & 3v2 games
  • Game Play e.g. small-sided games
  • Set Plays e.g. penalty corners and penalty strokes/shots

Each of these areas is covered at the appropriate stage, and to the appropriate level of detail, within the In2Hockey resource content.

The full outline of the Player Syllabus is available at www.englandhockey.co.uk/singlesystem