Heat is on for AFL North Coast juniors

Last season’s Northern Heat Colts side.

THE winter footy season may be over, but AFL North Coast’s best juniors are preparing for a big summer of intense training to help take their game to the next level.

The Northern Heat representative AFL program comprises the best male and female players from the AFL North Coast and AFL North West regions born in 2007 and 2008, with this summer set to see a Girls squad for the first time.

This off-season program exists to extend the representative pathway for the players of the regions and provide them with a further avenue to build their game ahead of transitioning towards senior footy.

Northern Heat selection trials will be held on Friday, 6 October at the Coffs Coast Sport and Leisure Park.

Those selected will commit to a gruelling series of training sessions that will be conducted between November and March, where the focus is on individual development of skills, fitness, and footy IQ.

The training sessions focus on AFL specific skills and game sense development, and strength and conditioning training.

To be eligible for consideration within the program, players must have trialled to have been a member of the North Coast Force representative program in the 2023 season.

The Northern Heat program runs from November to December initially, before selected players follow a specific training program at home during the school holidays, with training resuming in February and culminating in March.

The Heat program concludes with the representative teams playing a match on the Gold Coast.

AFL North Coast Community Football and Competition Manager Brad Greenshields highlighted the importance of the Northern Heat program.

“It creates a stepping stone for fifteen-and sixteen-year-olds to improve their game, and make it easier for them to take the step up into senior footy,” he said.

“A lot of footballers that are running around now in seniors, they have played a season or two in the Heat program.

“And the exciting thing is we have a girls team for the first time.”

Greenshields outlined what Heat coaches would be looking for at the trial.

“Players who are self-motivated and who are willing to compete and put in a really big effort,” he said.

“When the chips are down, players who can find that extra effort and motivation.”


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