The 2019 Global Field Hockey Survey by Maverick Hockey is the largest publicly available study of field hockey trends across the globe.
In it’s first year the survey received widespread support from hockey players internationally with well over 1,000 participants taking part.
A prize of $550 of Maverick Hockey gear was offered as incentive to take part in the research. To see if you were the lucky winner simply scroll to the bottom of this page.
Key findings from the research include:
UPDATE: We have sifted even further into the data and put together the 2019 Field Hockey Report, which is a comprehensive e-book that you can download for free. If you would like a copy of the report please fill out the form below and we'll email it to you right away:
Recent years have seen the emergence of a number of variants to the traditional 11 v 11 field hockey game. Recent years have seen the emergence of modified versions and rules in an effort to make the game more exciting, for example 5 v 5, 7 v 7, 9 v 9, and 11 v 11 with modified rules that include things like power plays and conversions following a field goal. Beach hockey has also started to develop a following.
The results found that these emerging variants to the tradition game are still yet to find their feet.
Indoor hockey, which attracts large participation in Europe, is still the most popular alternative to the tradition 11 a side game, with 10% of participants having played indoor hockey in the past 12 months.
Whilst 11 v 11 is by far the most popular way we play hockey, modified versions of the game have the potential to compete with the traditional 11 a side game in the future with whispers being circulated that thought is being given to replacing 11 v 11 at the Olympic Games with a modified version like 5 v 5, 7 v 7 or 9 v 9.
Indoor hockey on the other hand compliments the traditional game rather than competing with it, with almost every indoor player also having played traditional 11 a side over the past 12 months.
The surface we play hockey on has developed significantly over the past 20 years. Water based synthetic turf surfaces are now the most popular surfaces and the choice surface for international matches, clearly above sand based, hybrid turfs and grass.
Just as the surface we play on has dramatically changed, so too has the sticks we play with.
36.5 inch and 37.5 inch length sticks are the most popular choices among players, with a small number preferring 38.5 inches.
Perhaps due to the ongoing innovation and improvements made to hockey sticks, a large percentage of players prefer to upgrade their hockey stick every 12 months, and a strong majority (78%) upgrade their hockey stick at least once every 2 years.
Whilst the mid-bow remains heavily popular and is the most popular choice of hockey stick bow, low bows and more recently pro bows are staking their claim.
Despite most players taking a keen interest in the bow on their hockey stick, it is not an important factor for over a quarter of players.
Player purchasing habits are varied depending on the cost and type of equipment being purchased. Consumable items, such as grips are purchased the most often. Bags (stick/combo bags, backpacks and duffle bags) are purchased the least often with the vast majority of players purchasing a new bag every 12-24 months.
The top 12 field hockey brands most popular with players comprises each came in with at least 5% of players having purchased their sticks or equipment from over the past 12 months. Dedicated shoe brands, such as Asics and Salomon featured prominently as did brands which produce both shoes, sticks and equipment with the likes of Adidas, Grays, Gryphon and Kookaburra. Overall, Adidas (35%) and Grays (30%) were the most popular brands with players.
Unlike sports such as Basketball, Ice Hockey and others which attract strong TV and online viewership for their domestic leagues in comparison to international fixtures, Field Hockey relies heavily on the international game, in particular its participation as a sport at the Summer Olympic Games.
In a promising sign for the international game, in 2019 (being a non-Olympic year), just over 40% of players attended an international hockey match live.
Players love to watch international games, with more than 90% tuning in a least once in the past 12 months to cheer on their home country. The ways in which we view hockey matches are also expanding, with over 30% watching a match online in the past year.
From examining the above statistics, and those listed further below, a clear case can be made that players are enjoying playing the game themselves, as well being happy with watching and enjoying the quality of the international game.
It's not all green grass and roses however, with many players reporting their frustration with the costs associated both with playing hockey and in getting access to watch international matches (for the 60% of players who don't have free-to-air access to international games).
UPDATE: We have sifted even further into the data and put together the 2019 Field Hockey Report, which is a comprehensive e-book that you can download for free here: