SouthlandSport editor Nathan Burdon

Howzit. I’m SouthlandSport editor Nathan Burdon

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New opportunities for high school participation

New opportunities for high school participation

We are now half way through the year and in the middle of our winter sports term. We have several regional events scheduled for this term.

Recently Sport NZ has completed a Secondary School Age Review after collating data through surveys and a wide consultation process. The findings have now been published. Findings show during teenage years that participation is at its highest level during years 12-14 but a significant drop off occurs at age 15. The object of the review is to understand reasons for the drop off and why sport offerings are not meeting needs.

Some of the identified reasons have been a lack of self-confidence, self esteem , body image, over emphasis on competition and winning, early specialization, lack of ability and skills and competing demands on time.


In conjunction with Sport Southland we have endeavored to gather insights from students  at our local Secondary Schools to help shape and determine our offerings of sport and recreation and to work with Regional Sports to ensure we are catering to all needs. The voice of the participant is key to shaping future offerings and we want the process to become students driven , where they are helping make decisions on what is offered .They then are given the responsibility  in helping develop ideas for activities/events and assist in running these.


As a result of these insights and Sport NZ’s current focus on increasing girl’s participation we are introducing a new initiative called Wahine Tae Ana Ki – a female inclusive range of sports and recreation options where we will establish a Girls Activity club compromising three sub clubs. Activities within these clubs have been selected due to their popularity from surveys undertaken with students from several of our schools.

  1. A social sports club – introducing social racquet sports sessions and track cycling

  2. Gym and Fitness club – gym based sessions of boxfit , circuit, spin etc

  3. Adventure club – offering identified activities such as Rock Climbing , Kayaking and Ice Skating 

Not forgetting boys we are also planning a range of mixed gender activities such as futsal, wheelchair basketball and are introducing festival days that combine social sports and fun activities where mixed gender teams of six are selected from schools to attend (Pick a Mix of 6) .The target group is low participating students with the  emphasis being inclusion and fun.


While competitive sports options will still remain for students that enjoy these we want to widen the range and diversity to include more social  and non-competitive activities / events where the emphasis is on fun and social interaction.

Information on these events and upcoming opportunities can be found on our website , Facebook and with all school sports coordinators.

What’s Coming Up:

·       Ki O Rahi Tournament –ILT Stadium 30th July

·       Otago/Southland Skiing /Snowboarding Champs – Monday August 5th Cardrona

·       Southland Table Tennis Champs- Monday 5th August

·       Southland Indoor Bowls Champs Thursday 8th August

·       Southland Target Shooting Final – Monday 12th August

·       International Students Sports Day 22nd August

·       Southland Squash Championships 30th August

·       NZ Secondary Schools Tournament Week 2-8th Sept

·       Southland Indoor Climbing Championships 7th September.

·       College Games Year 9/10 24th September


Their own words: big race for Buddy Small

Their own words: big race for Buddy Small

Why the ILT Southland Sports Awards are so important

Why the ILT Southland Sports Awards are so important