Age is no barrier

Naomi Murphy began playing netball when she was 40 years old.

Not only did Naomi discover the sport, she fell in love with it and has since taken advantage of the opportunities that she has been presented with through netball.

It wasn’t an easy initiation at first. Like many other women through VicHealth’s This Girl Can VIC campaign, Naomi felt a fear of judgement when it came to sport – too old, too slow, just not good enough. But her initial hesitation was quashed by her own confidence when her inner thoughts turned to more of a ‘yes I can’.

“At first, I was very intimidated by the fact that the girls I was playing with were a lot younger, fitter and had a lot more experience in netball,” said Naomi.

“But there was something in my head that was telling me ‘just give it a go’, and ‘what have you got to lose?’.

“Once you get out of your comfort zone and you’re able to take that first step, no matter how big it is, you’ve just got to keep moving forward.”

Since taking up netball herself, Naomi has seen the opportunity of bringing the sport to young aboriginal girls; giving them an opportunity she didn’t have. From this, came Team Sister Girls – an aboriginal girls netball team which includes Naomi’s daughter, Destiny.

“I want to give opportunities to other aboriginal girls; opportunities that I never had. This year, with the support of some really great people in the community, we’re able to expand and have two teams.

“Many of them have lots of barriers in their home life, but when they’re on that court, they can just forget about all of that and enjoy it and build confidence.

“What netball has done for me is not only given me netball skills, but it’s taught me how to be a part of a team which is something I’d never done before in my life.”

Netball Victoria’s Rock Up Netball program allows a fun, judgement free environment for returning netballers or those who want to try it out! Get involved in Rock Up Netball at www.rockupnetball.com.au