On 4 and 5 February EFTA Level 1 Futnet Coaching Course was held in Belfast, complemented by 5th round of Northern Ireland Futnet League. EFTA was represented by its General Secretary Ms Zuzana Vinanska and the member of Technical Committee Mr Jan Vanke. The latter, apart from currently being one of the best Czech players and member of the Czech national team, is also a committed youth coach in his home town of Karlovy Vary and a great futnet promoter in schools also in other Czech towns.
EFTA Level 1 course is designed to provide a broad introduction to futnet, its rules, disciplines, basic skills and coaching. It offers a solid foundation upon which to build and advance to the higher level courses. This level comprises between 6 to 10 hours of futnet theory and practice and is open to anyone who is motivated to learn about the basic aspects of futnet, its training and coaching.
The theory part of the course was held on Saturday. The participants were explained the basic rules of futnet such as the aim of the game, court dimensions, scoring system, main futnet disciplines and their characteristics etc. They were made familiar with an official futnet ball and the type of footwear that is most suitable for this sport. As an experienced player and a youth coach, Jan described the training process in different parts of the season and outlined the main differences between trainings of men, women and children.
All the theory was put to practice on Sunday. The importance of a good warm-up, including stretching exercises, at the beginning of each training was stressed to the participants who also had a chance to do it themselves following Jan’s demonstration. This was followed by the explanation and demonstration of basic futnet skills such as serving, receiving, setting and attacking and, again, the participants could try it all out as well.
In the afternoon, they got a chance to put all their newly acquired knowledge and skills to practice in the 5th round of Northern Ireland Futnet League (played in triples with 2 bounces). Though for some it was their futnet premiere, many of their saves and passes were worthy of an experienced player. Especially Marissa, a football player and coach, and Trevor, sports superviser at Shankill Leisure Centre, who took turns in complementing the EFTA “All Stars” triple with Jan and Zuzana, made a great impression and greatly helped their team to win all the matches of the day and get the trophy for the winners of 5th round.
Overall, the course was viewed as a very positive experience which might help develop futnet in Belfast as well as other parts of Northern Ireland. For example, women’s football is very popular in Northern Ireland and since the season lasts only from April till September, there is definitely a room for futnet becoming a favourite off-season activity. There are already talks of a women’s team taking part in the next round of the Northern Ireland League and possibly even coming to the World Championship later this year!
Fingers crossed, we will definitely keep you up to date!