A short question & answer session with our netball manager to try and help/advise any ladies and gents looking to get back into netball.
Many of us ladies (and men) played netball at primary school, some at secondary school and some even picked it up again at College and University, however even University may be a few years ago now and getting back into netball may seem a little daunting.
This need not be the case. GO Mammoth offers social netball leagues for all abilities, even if you have never played netball before you are welcome. These leagues are either “recreational” or “intermediate” so are suited to your skill and confidence level.
Even with leagues nearby and the knowledge that they are open to all abilities, many of us still have doubts and worries holding us back from signing up. Whether fitness/skill level/location etc related, we have had a chat with the netball manager Rose Martin to try and help clear up these initial concerns when considering getting back into netball. All you have to worry about now is what to wear 🙂
Question 1: Where can I play netball in London?
All around! We have leagues in North, South, East and West London. Whether it’s close to where you live, your work or on the commute, we’ve worked hard to find venues that are suitable for all Londoners. Close to tube stations, easy to get to and of course, close to a sponsor pub or bar. We can’t forget about the hard work off the court! The best thing to do is take a look at the list of venues and the map on the netball page on our website and decide which location/venue/league/day/time is perfect for you and simply sign up to some mammoth netball FUN.
Question 2: None of my friends are interested in netball but I still want to play, is this possible?
Are they crazy – HA?! Yes, it’s completely possible. We have the option to either sign up with a team of mates or colleagues, or sign up on your own as an individual. Maybe you have a couple or a few friends interested but not a whole team; if that’s the case we can still make sure you all play together (just add their names in the “friends” box on your registration, or give us a call/drop us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org). Essentially, playing sport is not only a fantastic way to get/keep fit but also an awesome way to socialise and meet new people. It is a fun evening and breather from the very often stressful day to day life of city living!
Question 3: What level league is best suited to me?
We currently have 2 standards of leagues, recreational and intermediate, that cater to all standards. The recreational leagues are perfect for anyone who may have played at school but are a bit rusty, anyone who has never played before but are keen to learn or players that aren’t massively bothered about winning or loosing but more interested about having fun. The intermediate leagues suit players that have a solid grasp of the game and its rules; they appreciate a faster paced game and prefer a slightly more competitive atmosphere but still want to have fun playing. They are also for players/teams that are winning their recreational leagues comfortably and want to move up a level. Either way, I guarantee you we have a perfect league for each and every team and individual so what are you waiting for, get searching!
Question 4: I know many people say they are unfit, but I actually haven’t done any decent exercise in a few years, will I struggle?
You wouldn’t believe how people give me a call or pop an email mentioning that they haven’t played in years, are a bit un-fit and “just want to get back into it”. This is EXACTLY what we cater for and you are not alone, you run around as much as you want. We aren’t a club of professional players wanting to take part in the next Netball World Championships; we are a group of guys and girls who love playing sport and socialising at the same time at any level. If your main aim is to get fit, great, playing sport you don’t even realise its happening you are having too much fun and who wants to be by themselves on a running machine…
Questions 5: I can’t even remember the rules of netball, can I still play?
No problem at all! We have a great bunch of welcoming, lovely and professional umpires down at every league who are there to help and offer any advice necessary throughout your whole season. You inherently learn more and more each time you play and everyone knows practise makes perfect. You won’t know what its like unless you jump in and get involved! You can also check out the GO Mammoth netball rules on our website here.
Questions 6: Do you do any warm-up training sessions at the beginning of the leagues?
We hold a monthly netball clinic for both teams and individuals on a Saturday morning. Currently this is in South West London but we are looking to expand the clinic to other parts of the capital due to its mass popularity! The clinic provides the opportunity to improve your netball skills and techniques regardless of whether you currently play in one of our leagues or not, you could be completely new to GO Mammoth. By offering a two hour session of friendly qualified coaching and support, we give a service that compliments our fun and social leagues. The clinic caters to all levels of experience in a relaxed atmosphere and gives you the chance, no matter what standard, to improve your netball whilst having a great time! I always try to advise any slightly nervous new individuals or teams to try and attend this clinic just to see what we are all about before signing up to one of the leagues. It’s a good way to try before you buy!
Question 7: How do the leagues work?
We offer 8-12 week leagues 4 times a year. We hold winter, spring, summer and autumn seasons so we play all year round with, on average, a two-three week break between each season. All the leagues have staggered start times but do begin and end around the same couple of months, dependant on length. Each league has a location, venue and fixture time. You will always play at this venue on that specific night between the times shown, you will start no earlier or finish no later than the specified times but your 40 minute game times will change each week. They differ in each league but let’s say, at your venue, you play between 7pm and 9pm, one night you could have a 7pm game, another night it might be 7:40pm or 8:20pm. You get sent ALL the league/fixture details and information about a week or so before your first fixture so that you can pre-plan your whole 8-12 week season!
Question 8: If I join as an individual when do I find out/meet the girls in my team?
As mentioned above, you get sent all the necessary information about a week or so before the league start date, this will include how to see your team and the members with all their contact details. This means if you want to contact, maybe even meet up with your team-members before you start playing you can do so, otherwise we advise most members come a little early on the first night to say hello and introduce yourselves. It sounds daunting but the great thing is, everyone is in the same position and you wouldn’t believe how quickly players bond as a team and often stay together for future seasons.
Question 9: How do you work out what players go in what team (ie based on positions etc) and how many?
I create teams based on players preferred positions. For example I will try my best with who has signed up to make sure that the team have an even/equal amount of defenders, centre court players and shooters. I add, on average, around 8-10 players to each individual team (I advise this amount to any fully fledged team entering too, but of course they can have as many people as they like on their team), this leaves a little le-way each week for some ladies/gents to possibly be ill/have prior commitments or have a last minute situation. From experience within the leagues it is much better for teams to have perhaps one or two extras one week than be short and maybe have to forfeit a game with not enough players which is annoying for both teams involved as they don’t get to play a great game of netball. Life gets in the way sometimes so we compensate for this as we don’t want anyone missing out on what they paid for. We also have a great ‘availability’ system that lets all players update their game status each week, this helps all teams work out if they have enough to play or need ringers/fill-ins etc which we can help with. Even in worse situations with forfeits we try our upmost to organise friendly games for oppositions. If we can help it, you will never miss a game of netball.
Question 10: Do I need to bring anything with me?
Just your beautiful/handsome selves in your finest pair of trainers and sports gear (maybe a water bottle too for after you’ve worked up a sweat). We provide all equipment, from bibs to balls to a free ‘annual’ GO Mammoth t-shirt, we got you sorted! Remember netballers, GO Mammoth or GO home!
If you are interested in playing an a Mammoth netball league – CLICK HERE. We hope the above begins to help with those initial queries/doubts when considering getting back into netball, however feel free to give us a call on 0207 381 6034 if you want to find out more.
Alternatively, comment below with your questions and we will be happy to answer them…