Aaron Oman is stepping down as Sydney University Hockey Club’s Director of Coaching. Aaron filled the role superbly in 2010 and 2011, and the club will be very sorry that he is not with us in 2012.

Aaron leaves us to be the 2012 coach of the HNSW Waratahs. We congratulate him on this achievement. He is also the 2012 coach of the SJHA Boys Under 17/1s, which a great reminder of his commitment to giving something back to hockey at all levels.

Our Director of Coaching role is unique in hockey in NSW, and perhaps Australia. SUSF and SUHC created the role of Director of Coaching on a trial basis in 2009 to enable the hockey club to benefit from SU’s enormous pool of sports coaching skills and experience.

Sydney University has a proud history of local and even national success across a range of sports. Its cricket, rugby, water-polo and women’s basketball teams, for example, are currently some of the best club teams in Australia, and its coaches include some of Australia’s best in a range of sports. Its network of past players and supporters also provides a unique means to facilitate further development opportunities for players and coaches.

SU has seen the potential from having these skilled coaches come together to share their experiences in applying new and old coaching methods to enable athletes and teams to maximise their potential.  SUSF and SUHC created the Director of Coaching role so a proven hockey coach could participate in this process. The Director then works with SUHC’s own coaches to pass on these broader skills, as well as his hockey-specific insights.  It is a major benefit for hockey as a whole and for SUHC.

Aaron has been a great asset to the club in his two years as Director of Coaching. We will miss his proven coaching ability and technical skills, but even more so his warm personality and quiet and friendly manner. We will also miss his dedication, although his family will be happy to see more of him on weekends.  Aaron rightly retained his loyalty to his life-time club just down the road at Glebe, but showed his professionalism by avoiding the awful tribalism that mars Sydney hockey so badly off the field. Glebe can be proud of him.

SUHC wishes Aaron all the best in his role as the HNSW Waratahs coach in 2012. We will follow his coaching career with interest

The 2012 Director of Coaching is Scott Barker, the current HNSW U21 Men’s coach. Scott is following a class act, but has already shown his own professionalism and skills through his careful preparation for the role. Welcome to SUHC, Scott.  We hope you, the club and the hockey community as a whole will continue to benefit from the opportunities afforded by the Director of Coaching role.

This article is courtesy of Sydney University Hockey Club.