Hillary Commission Young People First
spacer The Hillary Commissioners 1998 Coaches Count Active Living Funding Allocations
Young People First Young People First

Young people are the first priority of the Hillary Commission. Our strategic objective is to increase participation and improve skill levels in sport and active leisure among young people of school age.

Through sport young people can gain skills which they enjoy throughout their lives. Sport teaches self-reliance and how to be part of a team. It can give young people confidence, pride and a desire to achieve results through hard work and commitment. Most importantly, sport teaches the vital value of fair play. Young New Zealanders need these qualities in order to succeed in life and play a positive part in their communities.

The Moving Through Sport national policy, developed by the Hillary Commission and launched by the Minister Hon Murray McCully in August 1997, defines the sporting rights of young people and sets benchmarks for improving sport. Sport must be fun and worthwhile for all young people, and many national governing bodies have now endorsed this approach.

The Commission advises national sports bodies on how they can implement Moving Through Sport and funds sports trusts nationwide to work closely with schools and local sports groups.

We want to see all young people moving through sport by ensuring that they:

  • enjoy sport
  • be treated with respect
  • achieve in sport
  • try many different sports and physical activities
  • know about getting fit, warming up and down, and other ways to prepare for sport
  • play sport adapted to suit their age, size and ability
  • play by rules they can understand and stick to
  • play in a safe environment with safe equipment
  • feel part of the team or the action
  • have skilled and qualified sports leaders
  • help make their own sporting decisions
  • use equipment that suits them

Our Investment
By 2000 we will see
  • 50.000 young school leavers trained as sport leaders
  • Kiwisport a regular activity in 95% of primary schools
  • A sports co-ordinator in 90% of secondary schools


ISSUE Starting with Fun and Making Good Progress
Young children will always love games. Sport has to be fun for children who are just starting out. Children need to develop skills at the level that suits their age and physical abilities and then continue having fun as the first priority. spacer

Since 1988 the Commission has helped teachers to coach sport using the KiwiSport model. Put simply, KiwiSport is sport the way kids want it.

KiwiSport has changed the face of sport in New Zealand. The Hillary Commission wants to say thank you to the thousands of teachers, parents and coaches who have played a part in KiwiSport over the past decade. The KiwiSport philosophy says sport for young people is best when modified to suit their needs and stage of development. With KiwiSport children can try many different sports and other physical activities – they learn skills, play hard but fair, and all experience success.

KiwiSport is recognised around the world as an outstanding way of teaching children about sport and healthy living. As well as teaching sport skills, KiwiSport encourages children to exercise every day through a variety of activities, and to explore the bush and countryside.

Teachers are the key to the success of KiwiSport. They are trained by coaches from each sporting code and supported by the 17 KiwiSport co-ordinators from regional sports trusts throughout New Zealand.Over 13,700 teachers were trained in KiwiSports, along with 7,709 parents, coaches and older students. Teachers often receive coaching after school in their own time - for which we say Thanks Teach!

Modified Sport
29 sports have now developed a version of their game that is suitable for children 7-12 years old:

  • Run Jump Throw (athletics)
  • Kiwi Badminton
  • Mini Ball (basketball)
  • Kiwi Cricket
  • Kiwi Croquet
  • Kiwi Cycling
  • Kiwi Golf
  • Kiwi Gymfun
  • Mini Hockey
  • Kiwi Indoor Bowls
  • Kiwi Judo
  • Kiwi Marching
  • Kiwi Netball
  • Kiwi Orienteering
  • Kiwi Rugby (Small Black rugby)
  • Mini Footy (rugby league)
  • Kiwi Ski
  • Mini Soccer
  • Kiwi Softball
  • Kiwi Squash
  • Kiwi Surf
  • Kiwi Swimming
  • Kiwi Table Tennis
  • Kiwi Tennis
  • Kiwi Touch
  • Kiwi Trampoline
  • Kiwi Tri (multisport)
  • Kiwi Wrestling
  • Kiwi Volley

Evan Crawford is the New Zealand Rugby Football Union Manager of Rugby Development.

"We've got to build on the work we've already done. Every child should grow up with sport as part of their life. They should be able to play different levels of sport as they get older.

"Rugby is a good example. We have modified the rules of the game at various levels to cater for various needs. We have a whole series of stages from Small Black rugby, to Junior Black rugby and so on right through to the All Blacks. That way we make sure players of all ages and skill levels are catered for."



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The Hillary Commission for Sport, Fitness and Leisure
Te Komihana Haakinakina a Hillary
Our programmes are funded by the NZ Lottery Grants Board