Go Mammoth
Past generations have equated the game of netball largely with PE classes, and its absence at the 2012 Olympic Games in London seem to back up its relative obscurity. Be that as it may, the sport has been gathering attention lately. A new generation of young players are getting involved in the game, which has been showcased on radio and television programmes such as The Only Way is Essex.

The game's newfound media spotlight may account for a rising trend in Britain's netball scene: mixed leagues. According to Go Mammoth, a London-based netball league, demand has raised in netball clubs around the United Kingdom for mixed leagues, with increasing numbers of male players hoping to get involved with the traditionally female game.

Go Mammoth's research reveals that 13% of the country's 274,320 netball players are male, while 54% of the total is aged between eighteen and forty. Although the game is played across the UK 85% of male participants are based in England.

At the time of writing Go Mammoth runs only two mixed leagues, but its founder Luke Mohr is optimistic about growth in the field and comments that the response to the development has been favourable.

'In the last year (and especially since the Olympics) we’ve seen all our sports increase in popularity and netball continues to be one of the highest demand for us. So much so we’ve opened 7 new leagues in the last year and will be opening 3 more in the coming season.'

According to Mohr, his Mammoth netball leagues in London have had a great upsurge in interest in the past year, even becoming oversubscribed. Judging by the above statistics, men who wish to play netball may play a surprisingly large role in this.

It remains to be seen if this renewed interest in netball will lead to increased attention given to other previously neglected games, or if the rise of men's netball will coincide with other developments relating to gender representation in sports.

More on this story - http://www.prfire.co.uk/sport/men-get-turned-on-to-mixed-netball-as-demand-for-the-sport-increases-126942
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Emma Saunders
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