Maties Sport Women’s Month Article
“Grit, the raw endurance, perseverance and passion that keeps you going despite obstacles.”
During the month of August – celebrated as Women’s Month in South Africa – we at Maties Sport will take the opportunity to celebrate some of the extraordinary women who – with grit and grace – makes a difference in the lives of our student-athletes and the university sport environment.
Lenise Marais – Maties Hockey Women’s Head Coach
Maties Women Hockey Coach Lenise Marais not only lives a life dedicated to hockey, but also a life that at its core has the goal to lead the way and help women in sport.
Lenise – a former Maties hockey player – was appointed in January 2021 and has been privilege enough to see her players in action seeing that the hockey season did get a start before Covid-19 once again put a stop to proceedings.
Lenise is very clear about her goal and vision for Maties Hockey Women.
“I want to develop student-athletes who can perform and deliver in the high-performance space whilst fostering an inclusive space that speaks to our team values and culture. Playing for medals would also be nice.”
Lenise is more than aware of the powerful legacy of Maties Women in hockey and sport in general. She after all has played her role in this legacy as well. She is a staunch believer of the force of women and their potential if given its rightful place.
“Our biggest challenge as women in sport remains access to equitable opportunities and resources for women stakeholders’ – athletes, officials, administrators, media etc. – in sport,” said Lenise.
“During Women’s Month we acknowledge and celebrate women. There are countless women in our country making meaningful and positive contributions to our society. And in all honesty…they need to be celebrated every day, all year around!”
Those who know Lenise or have seen her work ethic in action – as player and coach – can assure you that waiting around for something to happen is not the way she plays.
No wonder then the famous Maya Angelou quote “Do the best you can until you know better. Then, when you know better, do better” is her motto in life. This is also an attitude she instils in her players. She encourages youngsters to be responsible for their own opportunities and outcomes as far as possible.
“Practice and develop your skills, master your art, and improve your understanding of the game. Whatever capacity you find yourself in: be bold, be you, and go full out.”