Lauren Moyer, Ashley Hoffman and Amanda Magadan pose together for a photo.
Ashley Hoffman, Amanda Magadan and Lauren Moyer want more people to become as passionate and excited about playing field hockey as they are.
On a national team trip to Argentina last January, they were sitting in their hotel lobby “just chatting about field hockey, like nerds,” Moyer said. “We had been brainstorming for a while that we wanted to offer something online.”
They knew similar team sports like soccer and lacrosse provided online resources and also had an enviable level of engagement on social media.
“Become Uncommon” was born, a coaching group created and managed by the three members of the USA National Field Hockey Team to fill that gap in the market.
“Our brand is we want to create athletes to stand out,” said Hoffman, 24, captain of the women’s national team. “We really wanted to share our experiences from a holistic athlete- type view, so not only coaching and clinics, but also yoga, meditation and food, plus workouts that we do – just everything that you need to become an elite athlete.”
While inspiring and helping athletes achieve more – becoming “uncommon” – they want the sport itself to become more common.
“I literally had no idea this sport even existed prior to high school,” said Magadan, 25, who grew up in New Jersey. “We really wanted to make field hockey cool and hype it up and inspire girls to play it more and grow the game.”
And boys, too. They estimate that about 20 percent of their subscribers are male.
As national team members, the trio has star power and a wealth of information and experience to share. When the pandemic hit, they not only had the time to roll out online curriculums, they knew their backyard drills would be welcomed by athletes whose seasons had shut down.
Once it is safe to hold camps again, they hope to offer in-person instruction.
Hitting the Ground Running
“Become Uncommon” went live in May, rolling out three videos a week and offering introductory, medium and advanced skill levels. They quickly signed up more than 100 subscribers.
The three players are the stars of the videos, setting up tripods, doing the drills and then editing the footage.
With an imminent return to full-time training, they have decided to change their model by offering whole curriculums as a package.
The attacking and defensive videos have been among the most popular.
“People love the shooting drills,” Magadan said. “They’re a lot of fun for you when you’re practicing them and even just to watch.”
By filming sample workouts, they also offer insight into what the national team is doing. Athletes navigating a route to collegiate play can find tips on recruiting.
Their teamwork extends to the company, with Magadan taking charge of business, including partnerships, and email campaigns; Moyer handling marketing, media and the website and Hoffman as the creative force developing the curriculums.
“Beyond Uncommon” also seeks to make field hockey “more accessible to people,” Moyer said.
While the Northeast is a traditional hotbed and pockets of hockey are growing in Texas, Missouri and California, “it is still very much a growing sport in the U.S.” Magadan said. “We want to further that growth and help it in any way we can while also using our platform on the national team to do that.”
The three co-founders had different paths into the sport. Hoffman, who is from Pennsylvania, had a field hockey stick in her hand almost as soon as she could lift it. Her mother, Brenda, won a bronze medal as a member of Team USA at the Olympic Games Los Angeles 1984 and has been enlisted to help do some videos, although Hoffman said, “Most of the time, she’s like, ‘Don’t show me in the video. I don’t want to be in it.’”