Like in the early days, British Columbia today continues to be the major center for field hockey in Canada. Though, that isn’t to say the game wasn’t being played in other parts of the globe. Records show the creation of clubs in Calgary and the game being played in Halifax, Toronto, and Newfoundland in the 1900s. Presently, field hockey is enjoyed and played across Canada.
The Game Today
Hockey experienced its highest level of success in British colonial India, where Calcutta HC was created as the first professional field hockey club outside of England in 1885. The sport constantly grew at a quick pace in India during the 19th and early 20th centuries. When field hockey was reestablished as an Olympic sport in 1928, India went on to win the gold medal every year from 1928 to 1956. Also, field hockey has achieved excellent success in the former colonies of New Zealand, Australia, Egypt, Hong Kong, and the U.S.
Field Hockey Today
Field hockey is mostly practiced as a women’s sport in Canada and the USA where it is among the most well-liked women’s school sports. Since field hockey has been played by Americans since the time of British colonial rule, it has maintained being one of the oldest college sports in the U.S.
Soon after the creation of the men’s professional field hockey teams in England, many women’s colleges in America created the first women’s field hockey teams in the U.S. College field hockey has increased in popularity to the point where it is now acclaimed by over 250 U.S. colleges and universities. All this success has made field hockey one of the most rewarding scholarship sports in the U.S.
Competitive opportunities come in the form of junior and senior leagues that are tiered into divisions that reflect every level of play. Yearly provincial, club and invitational tournaments complement league play and deliver a chance to enjoy the game.
The game of field hockey is played vastly across the world. In fact, field hockey is the second biggest team sport on earth, played in more than 100 countries. In Canada, it is a well-liked family orientated sport, played in clubs by both women and men. Also, the game is played in numerous schools and provides a lifetime of both social and sporting opportunities for officials, players, and administrators.
The History of the Game
The origins of the game can be trailed back to the earliest civilizations of the world. Though, the modern game of field hockey was established in the British Isles. The modern game began in England in the mid-1800s and the first formal field hockey club (The Blackheath Football and Hockey Club) was created in 1861.
Many concepts and rules changed during the early years as the game grew throughout the British Empire. From these origins came not only the field hockey nations of Pakistan, India, and Australia but the expansion of the game in more than 100 countries. As a result, field hockey became the second biggest team sport on earth after soccer.
Since the 1908 Olympic Games in London, field hockey has been a men’s Olympic sport. The women’s game is a current addition, first acknowledged at the Moscow Olympics in 1980. Field hockey has women’s and men’s World Cup as well as competitions at other International Games such as the Commonwealth Games.
The History of Field Hockey in Canada
While the game developed around the globe in the late 1800s, so too did Canadian field hockey. Both men’s and women’s field hockey was established and growing in British Columbia before the end of the 19th century. Documentations show that as early as 1896, clubs on Vancouver Island and in Vancouver were enjoying regular games. Also, schools began playing the game with the earliest record being a 1903 Vancouver High School match played between a team of girls and boys.