A chance meeting poolside while their kids were at swimming training culminated in the creation of My Incredible Netball Journal.
But you see, Eliza McCann and Sue Cox’s daughters are not only swimmers, like hundreds of thousands around the country, they play netball too.
Sue was coaching under 11s netball at the time the idea came to her. She saw how passionate kids were about the sport and wanted to create a book that would harness that love for the sport, as well as offer a space to record match-day information such as positions and scores.
Having already published two kids travel journals, Eliza had a pretty clear idea on what needed to be done to bring the book to life.
The journal is the result of months of brainstorming and forming what it has become – nearly 100 pages of activities, questions, tips and reference points for young netballers aged 6-13 years old. The intention is for the journal to be a keepsake, for boys as well as girls.
Eliza explains, “Sue and I spent many, many hours sitting at our kitchen tables nutting out the content and making sure it was just right. We edited and then we edited again and just when we thought we were done editing, we went through it one more time!”
Sue added, “I wanted a book that went beyond just the facts, so the journal includes everything from sporting etiquette to nutrition.”
“When I coach I take an holistic approach and push kids to evaluate themselves both on and off the court. I have a strong emphasis on teamwork. I also talk about physical health, the importance of stretching and why training is so important. So I wanted the journal to convey all of this in a really fun and digestible way.”
The journal covers pretty much everything kids are immersed in when participating in the sport, but might not necessarily be conscious of. There’s space to jot down all your details and list favourite things, note the positions you’ve played over the course of the season and explains rules and courtside etiquette.
It’s also a brilliant communication tool between players and coaches.
As a coach, Sue has seen firsthand how the journal has been embraced.
“The response has been amazing. Kids are bringing the journal to training and to their games. I’ve seen kids filling it in together. The book aims to encourage communication between teammates, and us coaches, so we think we’ve done something right there.
“We’ve been sent lots of photos of kids obsessively filling in their books. We’re also getting the thumbs up from parents, which is great.
“We are also getting feedback that the journal is changing kids’ behaviours at home – they are actively choosing to eat healthier breakfasts, practicing drills and even doing pre-season fitness tests so they can monitor their improvement over the season.”
There’s an incredibly diverse team of My Incredible Netball Journal players, who guide and encourage. The team are pitted throughout the journal – they offer advice and demonstrate skill techniques.
Eliza hopes that not only will the journal benefit young players during a season, but something to keep and reflect on when the season is over.
“I really hope that by journaling they will learn to love the sport even more! Hopefully it will lead them to take greater ownership of their game and give them time to reflect on what they want to get out of their season.
“It makes a fabulous memento; something kids can hold on to and look back on in years to come.”
Interactive and thought-provoking, My Incredible Netball Journal is a great way for kids to track their netball life – both on and off the court – and who knows, it may just be the support some young netballers of today need to become the stars of tomorrow.
As a special offer for Netball Scoop followers, you can get 10% off your order by putting SCOOP at the checkout when placing your order. Spend $70 or more (three or more journals) and you’ll also get free shipping in Australia!
If you want to buy in bulk for a team, or fundraise with your club or association, you can contact Eliza and Sue to discuss – firstname.lastname@example.org.