Defying stereotypes, girls are carving their way into ice hockey

June 24, 2019

 

Ice hockey is not a common sport in Hong Kong — especially among women and girls.

 

In rather unusual circumstances, however, it has given Clara and Charleen a community where the mother-daughter duo share a common passion for the sport with their friends.

 

Charleen's love affair with ice hockey began in the summer of 2010, when she was 4 years old. 

 

"When my husband and I were both studying in Canada we used to watch NHL games and loved how exciting the sport was," said Clara. 

 

"So, when we found out there was ice hockey beginning class for young children, we both thought it would be a great sport for our daughter to learn."

 

 

Despite a big population of local Chinese in the city with Canadian ties, awareness of the sport is still starting to pick up. 

 

"Most people don’t know what ice hockey is when I tell them that I play it, they are usually like ‘ohhh ice hockey? Interesting…’ [sic] - they are more curious than anything else," said Charleen. 

 

"I used to train with boys when I was younger and I still train mostly with boys."

 

"Ice hockey is for a certain type of person who like challenges regardless boy or girl. Ice hockey is a sport for someone who’s not afraid to fall down again and again, it’s for someone who loves a fast paced game."

 

"But most importantly ice hockey is a sport for someone who is a great team player and understands that you cannot win a game alone, that it is a whole team effort." she added. 

 

Photo credit: Hong Kong Ice Hockey Association  

 

It is a journey that has not only built her character, but also broadened her horizons with plenty of opportunities to see the world. 

 

"Throughout the years, I travelled to many different places with my team for ice hockey camps and tournaments, including Toronto, Niagara, Vancouver, Kelowna, Hokkaido, Seoul, Singapore, Bangkok, Taipei and many places in China, etc. 

 

"On the ice, we worked hard in the trainings and fought hard in the tournaments. Off the ice, we explored different countries and enjoyed various cuisines around the world."

 

 

According to Clara, Charleen has developed so much confidence from playing but most importantly, she has fun.

 

"Whenever the season is about to begin she gets very excited and is always asking when the trainings will start."

 

“Everytime when we watch her playing ice hockey, she always has the biggest smile on her face.”

 

 

 

The article has been amended from its original version.

 

 

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