The Camberwell Hockey Club epitomises an inclusive, ageless sporting environment, playing host to what is now the largest Masters League of over 35s on the east coast of Australia.
With more than 200 players, the Masters League has created new pathways for senior players to continue their love of hockey. The league also encourages first time players to join and existing players to be involved in the club in other ways, like coaching junior teams.
Camberwell Hockey Club Masters player, recent retiree and oldest member of the club John Simpson hasn’t always played for the club. Growing up in India, spending 5 years in France and now living in Australia, he says he has been a “nomad” his whole life.
“I used to play hockey in my younger years but found it hard to fit the sport into my working life because I moved around. Now I’m retired, I’ve loved being able to play regularly with my local club and feel a sense of belonging,” John said.
“Playing at Camberwell Hockey Club has been an amazing way to build social networks, particularly when I arrived in Australia at 31 years old. It’s also been great for my physical fitness, increasing the strength and mobility of my body.”
Club President Simon Winter said that it is a fantastic achievement to be playing competitive sport over the age of 70 and they were proud to be able to offer a league for this generation of player.
“Over a decade ago the club spotted a gap for players aged over 35 years. This sparked an internal competition during summer which quickly turned from 4 teams, to 8, and so on. Now, 15 years later, we’re the biggest Masters League on the east coast,” Simon said.
Blending the ages of over 35s to 75s across all abilities at the club has created remarkable camaraderie and friendships on and off the field.
Sport has no boundaries. If your club has the capacity to accommodate a Masters League or variation on this, we encourage you to do so.
For more information on our sporting clubs, contact our Recreation and Wellbeing Department on 9278 4797.