Committee Roundups

     A meeting between FIH President, Juan Angel Calzado, Hon. Secretary General Els van Breda Vriesman, Hon. Treasurer ai. Robert Lycke, Executive Director Hans Bertels and FIH Committee Chairpersons was held on 17th January in Brussels. The purpose of the meeting, which is now a regular occurrence, is to improve lateral communication between Committees and improve understanding of the FIHs global outlook and direction.

Competitions Committee

The next meeting of the Competitions Committee will be held May 26th in Utrecht.

Competition results can be found by clicking on results icon.

Upcoming events to be awarded are: Mens World Cup, 2002; Womens World Cup, 2002; 7th Junior Mens World Cup, 2002; 4th Junior Womens World Cup, 2002; 10th Mens World Cup Qualifier, 2001; 10th Womens World Cup Qualifier, 2001; 10th Mens World Cup Preliminary, 2000; 10th Womens World Cup Preliminary, 2000.

The FIH is awaiting receipt of full and detailed proposals from bidding countries.

Development & Coaching Committee

Coaching Course An FIH Coaching Course will be held 17-24 May in Arnhem, the Netherlands, at the National Sport Centre (Papendal). Master Coaches Horst Wein and Brian Glencross, and Grade 1 Coach Carina Benninga will serve as course conductors. The number of participants will be limited to 25. Deadline for applications was 1st March and accepted applicants will receive invitations to participate by 10th March.

Coaching Conference The FIH and KNHB will be conducting a high-level Coaching Conference, 26th, 28th and 29th May, at the Galgenwaard Stadium (World Cup venue) from 9 am to 12 noon each day. All FIH Coaches, including Grade 1 and Master Coaches, are invited to attend the course, which will focus on the development of hockey and hockey coaching as observed during the World Cups. Other high level coaches from outside the Netherlands will be considered for participation. Contact FIH Administration Manager Catherine Tummers at the FIH office in Brussels for a request form, which must be completed and returned by 1st April. Selection of participants will be based on early application and global representation. Accepted applicants will receive an invitation to participate by 15th April. A $50 fee, which covers daily lunches, will apply. World Cup entrance tickets are not included in the fee.

Coaches Meeting An FIH Coaches meeting will be held from 9 am to 12.30 pm, 25th May at the Galgenwaard Stadium. All FIH, Grade 1 and Master Coaches are invited to attend to discuss experiences and lessons learned through Olympic Solidarity and FIH Coaching Courses, as well as the future system for Coaching Courses and FIH Coach certification. There is no participation fee. Please advise Catherine Tummers by 1st April of your intent to attend.

Equipment Committee

Synthetic Turf Surfaces - Suppliers of FIH approved products are being consulted regarding proposals for tightening the performance requirements for unfilled top level synthetic surfaces. This is in attempt to reduce the variability of surfaces from tournament to tournament and variability at different parts of the same field of play. Any changes should improve predictable playability combined with high safety and comfort levels.

Suppliers have also been asked to respond to proposals for adapting present performance standards to allow for the introduction of lower cost development pitches in countries without a synthetic surface. With the support of the IOC, the FIH will in 1998 start two pilot projects for the installation of a development pitch in two countries on different continents.

Inventory of synthetic turf pitches - John McBryde (Equipment Committee member) has submitted a summary of worldwide installations to end of year 1997. Sixty four national associations responded to the 1997 survey questionnaire. This information coupled with previous responses provides an estimated figure of 1900 synthetic turf fields of play in 53 countries. An analysis of returns from 11 countries reporting turf replacements (67 surfaces replaced) suggests an average life span of 9.7 years, but there is evidence of numerous surfaces over 10 years of age which have not yet been replaced. Current information suggests there is no significant difference in longevity between unfilled and sand-filled fields of play. However, there is evidence to suggest a significant difference in longevity between surfaces installed in the tropics (average 7.5 years) and those installed in temperate climates (average 11.1 years) Further research is needed before drawing firm conclusions from these preliminary findings.

FIH Equipment Committee Terms of Reference have been approved by the Executive Board.

Appraisal and Planning Meeting of Accredited Laboratories (Papendal November 1997) - Actions taken following this meeting include obtaining information from FIH accredited laboratories on sliding as a function of our sport and the related requirements for unfilled synthetic hockey surfaces, as well as consideration of a test for angled ball bounce, which would give additional information on surface slipperiness.

Other enquiries involve a review of test procedures and ways of measuring the colour contrast between a ball and the field of play surface for visibility purposes, and the saturation of watered pitches. Procedures for measuring field of play markings and accurate measurement equivalents have been forwarded to the Hockey Rules Board for their consideration.

The Equipment Committee will meet in Utrecht, Netherlands, on 27/28 May 1998.

Marketing & Promotion Committee

The new-look FIH logo and corporate housestyle have been officially launched. A set of clear guidelines for logo usage have been sent to all member associations, event organisers, FIH approved manufacturers and sponsors.

As part of the FIHs updated visual identity, the old Hockey News Media Quarterly has received a new name and a face-lift. Your feedback is welcomed and should be sent to the Editor.

The AstroTurf-sponsored 1997 FIH World Hockey Highlights video has been completed and distributed to all member countries and numerous members of the world hockey family. Initial comments and feed-back are very encouraging. Congratulations to Mary Coyle (FIH Communications Manager) and Rupert Rumney (API TV) on a well-produced highlights video. Copies will be on sale during the 1998 World Cups in Utrecht and can also be ordered through the FIH. PAL version is £10 plus £2 for postage and NTSC version is £12 plus £2 for postage. Send your cheque with your order, including full contact information and your choice of format, to the FIH office Avenue des Arts 1, bte 5, 1210 Brussels, Belgium.

Preliminary guidelines for advertising on the pitch run-off areas and on the backs of goal nets and goal back-boards have been drafted and approved. The FIH is now seeking an appropriate event during which to test the new guidelines. Media law in the Netherlands does not permit such forms of advertising and so they may not be tested during the World Cups.

API TV is currently in negotiation with a number of international broadcasters for the sale of the 1998 World Cup television rights.

The MPC has tabled for Executive Board consideration a number of new proposals including: Committee Terms of Reference, FIH Marketing Strategy position paper and an FIH "Corporate Profile", to be used as a marketing tool.

The next meeting of the MPC will be held on 25th May 1998 in Utrecht.

Medical Committee

Injury Statistics Sheets requested National Associations are asked to submit their Injury Statistic Sheets during tournaments, particularly as the game of hockey moves to a faster, television influenced product. The information will greatly assist in making suggestions for future improvement.

IOC Medical Conference - FIH Medical Committee Chairperson, Dr. Kathleen Watson was in attendance at the 4th International Olympic Committee Meeting on Sports Science held in October 1997 in Monte Carlo. The conference, entitled Training & Care of Athletes, Current Concept & Technologies, addressed issues concerning the young athlete, the Olympic athlete and the recreational athlete, as well as the Physiological and Psychological aspect of sport.

"The Medical Committee of the IOC is very aware of their role and responsibility (with respect to athletes)," explained Dr. Watson. "It was a well-prepared, presented and attended congress,"

A variety of programs were held simultaneously to stimulate the attendees, who included coaches, trainers, Medical Doctors and clinical researchers. The presentation categories were: Physical Science, Biological Science, Psychological Science and Medical Science. Prizes were awarded at the conference in each of the four areas of subject matter.

Two important papers presented covered the preparation of the Travelling Athlete and The Transition of the Elite Athlete out of sport. There were papers on the Female Athlete, Nutrition and over-training. Particular attention was paid to the young athlete and the immature skeleton. Cold weather and altitude situations were also addressed. FIH Medical Committee member, Dr. J. Smorawinski et al, had a poster presentation "Specificity of Muscle Loading in Field Hockey Competition".

FIH Medical Committee member, Dr. Robin Mitchell of Fiji, is a member of the IOC Medical Committee.

There is a call for papers for the 5th IOC World Congress on Sport Science which is scheduled for 1-6 November 1999.

Umpiring Committee

An International Umpire Managers Seminar was held in London 28-30 November 1997. Sponsored in part by the FIH and supported by Olympic Solidarity Funds, the seminar attracted 34 participants representing 16 countries and virtually every continent.

An extensive programme had been prepared covering various aspects of the Umpire Managers role. A number of the sessions addressed rudiments of this role, i.e tournament preparation, tournament management, feedback & reporting, and interface between the Tournament Director and Umpire Manager.

Other issues were also examined. There were presentations on: Use of video, the players point of view - from International Player Coaches; the importance of coaching within the Umpire Managers role; the umpires point of view - from two World Cup & Olympic list umpires; motivation, stress, performance and management of umpires.

Study of those subjects has helped demonstrate that the role of the Umpire Manager and his/her effectiveness during a Tournament is important in ensuring that umpires at International tournaments perform at their optimum level.

Chairman of the FIH Competitions Committee, Heinz Wöltje, and Hon. Secretary General, Els van Breda Vriesman, were in attendance at the course.