The Lightning Academy

The Lightning Academy’s aim is to find and grow competitive players and coaches with the aspirations and ability to compete at an elite level.

Our Academy

Our Loughborough Lightning Academy supports over 270 athletes from 12 – 21 years of age. We believe in an inclusive athlete centred environment that fosters a culture of excellence, teamwork, ownership and gratitude whilst providing a strong foundation for personal development.

Our Academy has strong links to the Loughborough Lightning senior programme and our ethos is inclusive of all ages and stages within our club. 

The Pathway

Below is our current performance pathway structure:

Academy Training

The Academy programme provides performance training and a pathway for athletes to develop, progress and strengthen their understanding of the game within a team environment. We aim to provide the athletes with a high standard of coaching, education, and an enjoyable training environment with the addition of high quality match play to support the athletes learning and progression.

Competition

A small group of athletes will be selected to represent Loughborough Lighting in competition.

The competition season is split into two parts:

  1. NPL League Season (September – April roughly)
  2. NPL Tournament Season (May – August roughly)

The Lighting teams provide an opportunity for players to develop within competition and as part of a team. We have teams competing in the U21 and U19 Netball Performance League (NPL) as well as U17 and U15 teams who play training games against other Franchises during the league season. U21, U19, and U17 teams will also compete in the NPL tournament in the summer. The U15 team will compete in the School Games competition. Each team will consist of 12-15 players depending on the rules of the competition.

Athletes selected for a team will have an additional session and therefore train up to twice a week.

Safeguarding

Loughborough Lightning is committed to ensuring your child plays netball in a safe environment. As part of this commitment staff, coaches and volunteers coming into contact with our athletes will meet the following criteria:

-Valid UKCC Level 2 (Head Coaches)
-Valid UKCC Level 1 or 2 (Assistant Coaches)
-Valid 1st Aid Certificate
-Will have undergone a Disclosure and barring service (DBS) check with Loughborough University to ensure their suitability.

 

In the event of a safeguarding issue please email: Lightningacademy@lboro.ac.uk Email Subject: SAFEGUARDING. The email will be forwarded to our safeguarding officer who will respond as soon as possible. 

Please note that the Lead Safeguarding Officer may refer the matter to the NGB England Netball, Local Authority Children’s Services Department, the Police, or Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) should the child need immediate attention. 
 

England Netball Safeguarding Information:

https://www.englandnetball.co.uk/governance/safeguarding/safeguarding-policies/

 

England Netball report a safeguarding concern

There is a section on the England Netball website dedicated to reporting safeguarding concerns which is found here -https://www.englandnetball.co.uk/governance/safeguarding/reporting-a-safeguarding-concern/

Concerns can be raised by sending an email to besafe@englandnetball.co.uk or using and completing the concern report form found through the link above.

 

Remote Coaching Safeguarding Considerations

Guidance on this can be found here - https://www.englandnetball.co.uk/support/support-for-organisations/clubs/covid-19-information-for-clubs/ under the ‘Encouraging Activity’ drop down section. 

 

Zoom call safety features

The NSPCC and O2 have published safety advice about Zoom on their Net Aware site which applies for all video conferencing services.

 

This includes:

  • Supervising your child whenever they are using Zoom.
  • Ensure meetings are password protected. This will be compulsory from Saturday May 9th.
  • If you’re hosting a public meeting ensure only you can share your screen by turning on the function when setting up the call.
  • Ensure the waiting room feature is on at all times and only let in people you know.
  • Do not share meeting details or passwords publicly or on social media, including in ‘closed’ groups, and only share them privately with attendees you know and trust.
  • Familiarise yourself with the security icon in the menu bar so you know how to lock the meeting, use the waiting room and remove participants

 

Any adult concerned about the welfare of a child or young person can call the NSPCC helpline for free and confidential advice on 0808 800 5000 or email help@nspcc.org.uk. A dedicated O2/NSPCC online safety helpline is available on 0808 800 5002. Children can contact Childline for free on 0800 1111 or visit childline.org.uk and speak to a counsellor about a worry or concern they may have 365-days-a-year.

 

 

Selection

Each season we host trial opportunities for athletes to be selected into our Loughborough Lightning Academy Pathway. All athletes, regardless of selection from previous seasons, must register and attend trials.

Selection is done in line with England Netball guidelines and our Loughborough Lightning Selection Policy.

Selection into our U15 and U17 Academy Hubs:
Each season we conduct a 1-day trial for entry into each age group of our Academy Hub programme. Trials dates are normally in June and selected athletes will be sent a strength and conditioning programme to complete at home during the summer in preparation for training to commence in September. 

Athletes are not required to be nominated to attend trials. Trials are open to anyone who would like to put themselves forward for selection into our academy, as long as they meet the age requirements. All athletes are required to complete an online registration form detailing their contact infomation and their preferred positions.

Age Requirements: TBC
Please note that due to Covid-19, trial dates for the 2021-2021 season will be announced in due course.

Selection into our U15 and U17 Competition and Development Squads:Selection for the following squads will be conducted via an internal trials process and will be limited to current members of our U15 and U17 Academy Hubs. All athletes who attend these trials will be nominated via their Academy Hub Coaching Team.

Lightning U15 Futures Squad
Lightning U15 Development Squad 
Lightning U17 Competition Squad
Lightning U17 Development Squad 

Selection into our U19 and U21 (NPL) Squads:
Trials dates are normally in October when university students have returned to the area. 

Athletes are not required to be nominated to attend trials. Trials are open to anyone who would like to put themselves forward for selection into our academy, as long as they meet the age requirements. All athletes are required to complete an online registration form detailing their contact infomation and their preferred positions.

Age Requirements: TBC
Please note that due to Covid-19, trial dates for the 2021-2021 season will be announced in due course.

Mid-Season selection opportunities:
We have a number of opportunities for potential athletes to be invited into the Lightning Academy pathway for trial throughout the season:   

  • County coach referral
  • Lightning Masterclasses
  • Lightning Camps
  • Opportunity to be scouted within competition

Internal training opportunities:
Through out the season and in between trials, players can be invited to train at the next level of the pathway by a Lightning Coach. This is to ensure we are able to support the needs of individual athletes and provide extension where applicable.

More Information:
For a more comprehensive understanding of the process please read the selection policy below:

Lightning selection policy - netball