New Coaching Director – Keli Symons

March 8, 2021

The Fitzroy Junior Football Club is very excited to announce the appointment of our new Coaching Director, Keli Symons. Many thanks to our outgoing Coaching Director, Matty Drew, for his tireless efforts over a long period in the role – thanks Matty!

Keli has been acting as the Coaching Coordinator for a number of years and brings direct coaching experience to the role in addition to a wealth of knowledge about the coaching environment at FJFC and the YJFL.

Congratulations Keli!

Please see Keli’s Biography and thoughts on the role below.

I was very keen to be positive role model to my kids, I loved kicking the footy with them and I loved spending time with their friends.  So I put my hand up, did the Level One AFL coaching course and have now coached Auskick, Under 9s and 10s mixed teams and U12, U13 and U14 girls as well as taking on the Coach Coordinator and now Coaching Director roles at the club. Seriously, best decision. Ever!

Girls footy has gone gangbusters at FJFC over the last few years, so why do we still not have many female coaches??

A Monash University study conducted last season found the following fun facts about female footy coaches in the YJFL:

  • most have never played football
  • most coach female teams
  • most are the mothers of players in the team
  • all had previously played a team sport
  • all knew it was extremely important to have female role-models in the community.

Basically, that is me!

I don’t know everything about footy. My kicking has certainly improved, I understand the positions better now, but I am still terrible with game plans and tactics and I never get my own ball in markers-up. But other skills are just as important – imparting a strong sense of fairness and belonging as well as encouraging good sportsmanship.

I found Fitzroy to be a welcoming and supportive environment for me as a new coach. Being a big club, there is so much support and structure to help you. I asked a lot of questions, still do, and I always get helpful responses.

The single biggest barrier to females coaching footy is lack of self-confidence in their ability. So if those fun facts about female coaches sound a bit like you, then the only thing stopping you is YOU. If you are still not sure, give me a call and I’ll talk you into it!