Heading for New Waters

As the South China Morning Post article says about HKUWHA, Hong Kong’s underwater hockey players are headed for new waters – specifically in Chengdu, China this 5/27-30 weekend at the 2nd Annual China Cup. It’s an exciting time for HKUWHA as we make our very first appearance as a team at an official tournament. We want to wish the warmest luck to our team members who are there this weekend: Darren Foo, Simon Lee, Roxy Liu,  Isabel Parra, Liz Sullivan, Mark Sullivan, Flora Tang, and David Yip.

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official china cup name tags!

The SCMP isn’t the only media reporting about our team. In fact, the spring has been quite an exciting season full of media presence for Hong Kong’s only underwater hockey team:

  • In addition to the article, SCMP also posted an awesome video about underwater hockey’s increasing popularity in Hong Kong.
  • Fitz HK wrote up an awesome article comparing us to underwater Harry Potter (and let’s be real, any comparison to Harry Potter is pretty awesome).
  • One of Hong Kong’s legendary sports reporters, Vince Ng (伍家謙), visited us at practice and posted subsequent video segments on his Facebook page that features our founder, Henry, and some of our team members. You can see a few other videos from him here and here.
  • Hong Kong Shue Yan University also published an article about our team, giving an introduction to underwater hockey for those unfamiliar with the sport (which might be a lot of you – we understand).

This is only the beginning – through our Facebook page, Meetup group and regular summer practices (see below), we’re excited to see the team continue to grow. See below for upcoming practices and come join us when you’re free. See you in the water!

Make sure to sign up here for June practices at the Island School (20 Borett Road) so that we know you’re coming! 

Wednesdays (7:30PM – 9:30PM): Meet at 7PM the taxi stand outside Admiralty Station MTR if you’re interested in sharing a taxi:

  • Jun* – 1, 4 (Sat), 8, 15, 18 (Sat), 22 & 29 (Sat)
  • Jul – 6, 13, 20 & 27 
  • Aug – 3, 10, 17, 24 & 31 
  • Sep – 7, 14, 21 & 28
  • Oct – 5, 12, 19 & 26

*Please note Saturday practices will be held from 1:00PM – 3:00PM.

2016 Spring & Summer Schedule

HKUWHA has an exciting spring & summer schedule coming up, and we hope you can join us (speaking of joining – check out our new Meetup group to stay updated on upcoming events).

Regular Practices : Regular practices will be held on the following dates at the Island School (20 Borrett Road, Central, HK):

Wednesdays (7:30PM – 9:30PM): Meet at 7PM the taxi stand outside Admiralty Station MTR if you’re interested in sharing a taxi.

  • Apr – 13, 20 & 27
  • May – 4, 11, 18 & 25
  • Jun – 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29 
  • Jul – 6, 13, 20 & 27 
  • Aug – 3, 10, 17, 24 & 31 
  • Sep – 7, 14, 21 & 28
  • Oct – 5, 12, 19 & 26

Saturdays (1:00PM – 3:00PM)

  • May – 7 & 21

Special Practice on April 30-May 1: As HKUWHA prepares to make its first appearance at the China Cup in Chengdu, China (see below), we will be hosting a special practice with some participants flying in from Singapore and Shanghai to join in! The special training will take place at the Outdoor Swimming Pool of Wah Yan College in Kowloon (56 Waterloo Road, Yau Ma Tei) with pool time from 3PM-6PM on April 30th and 10AM-12PM on May 1st.

There will also be a discussion and social dinner at 7PM on April 30th. Join us regardless of your skill level – beginners are welcome to learn from some of the more experienced players! Stay posted on our Facebook group for more details.

2nd Annual China Cup on May 27-29: HKUWHA is excited to be sending representatives to Chengdu, China to compete in the 2016 China Cup! We are looking forward to practicing hard over the weeks leading up to it and excited to officially play as the Hong Kong representatives for the tournament.

Looking forward to a fun, underwater hockey-filled summer – we look forward to seeing you in the pool!

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Shenzhen UWH Weekend Recap!

HKUWHA members spent this past weekend in Shenzhen for our first ever event outside of Hong Kong. This was really exciting because we got to meet our fellow UWH players from neighboring Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Zhuhai and spent around 7 hours in the pool across Saturday and Sunday.

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freezing in the taxi queue

After a bit of a late start on Saturday due to unexpected traffic and a long taxi queue at Shenzhen Port , the 9 of us – Coaches Nowie and Darren, plus Henry, Anna, Susan, Flora, Rox, Tony, and Chelssy – met with the Chinese players at the pool in the Nanshan District of Shenzhen. The first hour or so was spent playing games so that the coaches (Nowie and Darren were joined by Coach Yutao from China) could get an idea of what techniques and areas to focus on over the weekend.

The pool training on Saturday ran from about 12:00PM to 3:00PM, with the coaches leading breathing and swimming drills after the initial games. We wrapped up the afternoon with some more games, trying to keep warm in the increasingly cold pool. Between the 36 participants that were there for the weekend, there was plenty of time for both playing and observing (as substitutes), and definitely time to pose for some photos!

The Saturday pool session was followed by a 3-hour strategy session held at a cafe. We finally got to see what everyone looked like without a mask/snorkel on through the introductions, and munched on some yummy carbs as the three coaches taught positioning and formations. For a lot of the newer players, it was the first time learning about hockey beyond just the basic swimming with a puck and a stick, and there were some really good questions from the audience about the correct positioning for the players during games.

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Everyone who attended the strategy session! 

On Saturday evening, some of the HKUWHA players went to eat “Coconut Chicken” hot pot and enjoyed some great live music while we ate. But after that, it was time for bed so we could be at the pool for the Sunday morning pool session!

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Debuting our new t-shirts

Sunday started out with more swimming drills along with some passing/puck handling, and we topped off the weekend with some more games! It was great to see everyone’s improvement over just two days of training – formations and positioning improved significantly as people became more aware of where to be and who to look for, rather than all rushing towards the puck at once. We went for some good old hot pot (yes, again) afterwards and were headed back to Hong Kong by the late afternoon.

It was great to meet all the players from China, and it was really nice for HKUWHA members to get to spend some time with each other to bond as a team. Thanks all who came out – especially to Kevin and La Nina from Shenzhen for organizing, and to our three coaches Nowie, Darren and Yutao for coaching – it was an awesome weekend and we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

Jan 23-24 UWH Weekend: Shenzhen

Join us for a weekend of Underwater Hockey in our exchange event with our UWH neighbors in Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and Zhuhai!

This will be HKUWHA’s first chance to interact with some UWH players outside of HK and we are excited to hold this exchange to play with other underwater hockey lovers 🙂

Whether you’ve joined us for 10 practices or 0, this is an awesome opportunity for you to learn the sport and improve your skills. We’ll have both pool time and classroom time, and spend the rest of the time getting to know both our teammates and nearby UWH players from China.

Tentative schedule:

Saturday, 1/23
11AM-3PM: Pool coaching (UWH skills and techniques)
3PM-5PM: Classroom coaching (this may be adjusted for a bit later to allow time for changing out of suits)
5PM onwards: Dinner & Social time

Sunday, 1/24
9AM-1PM: Pool time (games to utilize newly learned techniques!)
1PM onwards: Lunch & Social time; head home

Please let us know below whether you’ll be able to make it that weekend so we can plan for transportation and hotel logistics by RSVPing on our Facebook page. Estimated registration fee is around HKD200. Other costs will include transportation, hotel, and food (we will, of course, search for the most economic options!)

We hope you can join us for this exciting exchange with our UWH friends in China.

***Please note that you may need a visa to enter China, depending on where your passport is from. Make sure to double check your entry requirements prior to the weekend! 🙂

Logo & T-Shirt Winner: Henry Chan!

Congrats to Henry Chan, who designed the winning submission for HKUWHA’s very first logo and t-shirt design! Here are some draft photos of our to-be logo and shirts, along with Henry’s explanations below:

 

 

T-shirt:
This design is simple, elegant,energetic and fun. It captures the essence of underwater hockey and is straight forward for people to know what UWH is about. I personally like how the back is linked with the front with the black hockey player sticking his head out from no where, exactly what you feel when you thought you are clear to score.
Note: 香港水曲means “Hong Kong UWH”

Logo:
The design is adopted from AUHC 09′ and permission is granted for us to use. The calligraphy “水” means water. It gives an artistic sense and also a feel of HK culture. Then there are two petal adopted from the HKSAR flag. I’ve turned one into a hockey player, which again will be straight forward for people to know about UWH.

Congrats to Henry on winning with the highest number of “likes” on Facebook, and a huge thanks to our other contributors, Nowie and Isabel, for their designs (you can see them on our Facebook event).

 

 

Update: No Practice

Everyone seems to be busy with the holiday season – we’re happy that there’s so much going on, but unfortunately that means we aren’t quite getting the turnout we expected for our December practices.

Due to this lower expected turnout, we will not be holding any more practices for the remainder of the year!

Thankfully, that’s only two more weeks. Thanks for your understanding and stay tuned for us to be back in full force come 2016!

December 2015 Practices

With the holiday season coming around, you KNOW you should be in the water playing hockey and burning off those calories. Come on, we live in Hong Kong: we’re not just feasting on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Nope, our inner glutton is going to continue through February for Chinese New Year. So come and join us for December hockey practices!

We’re trying out a new pool at the Lycee Francais International (34 Price Road, Jardine’s Lookout; don’t know how to do the accent aigu and the little comma under the “c” so just pretend it’s in French) for this month and had our first practice there today. We get to have the entire indoor, heated pool for ourselves – huge thanks to Isabel for the hookup!

We’ll be practicing on two more Tuesdays this month at the above location:

  • December 15th, 7:30-9:00PM
  • December 22nd, 7:30-9:00PM

So make sure to come out and join us for hockey practice before the holidays! As always, we have gear for you to rent if necessary.

PS The T-shirt/Logo Contest is still going, so make sure to send your submissions to hkuwha@gmail.com if you’re planning to create a design!