Paving the Way for Disability Inclusive Field Hockey Following the All Starz Showcase

by USA Field Hockey

LANCASTER, Pa. - Able Field Hockey, Long Island All Starz Field Hockey and PA Revolution All Starz Field Hockey participated in the USA Field Hockey Inaugural All Starz Showcase on Saturday, March 4. All three clubs brought a combined total of 42 athletes, numerous coaches, volunteer staff and a crowd of enthusiastic friends, family and supporters. The showcase was hosted as part of the 2023 National Indoor Tournament, presented by YOLO Sportswear, providing a platform to truly showcase disability inclusive hockey in front of field hockey members from across the country who were in attendance for the national event.


“Our athletes brought their A-game to the All Starz Showcase!,” shared Lydia Smeltz, PA Revolution All Starz Field Hockey Coach. “Our athletes thrived off the energy of the crowds and officials. Building community and friendships with the other teams was awesome.”


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2023), 1 in 4 adults in the United States have a disability. “People living with disability are at least twice as likely to be physically inactive as those without disability” (Carty et al., 2021). Thus, indicating that individuals with a disability are missing out on opportunities to enhance their physical, social and emotional health and well-being as well as the joys and life skills that come with sport participation.


The All Starz Showcase highlighted the need for emphasis on USA Field Hockey’s value of inclusion and accessibility. The event provided the opportunity for individuals with a disability to embrace the game, and simply play and learn.


“When I spoke to Coach Alexa, I told her that I felt special to be chosen to play in the field hockey tournament, but I was nervous that I couldn’t play that well. Coach Alexa told me not to worry and to have fun and that I could do it!,” shared Lauren Fontanetta, Long Island All Starz Field Hockey athlete. “After the games, I felt so happy and excited because we won, and I scored a goal. I was proud of myself because I realized I can do it! I feel like I accomplished something important to me.”


Disability inclusive opportunities have an impact that goes beyond the athletes. Parents, guardians, siblings and others who frequently support a loved one with a disability are also greatly impacted by these disability inclusive opportunities. “Our family had a great time!” said Beth Schierloh, Able Field Hockey parent. “Carly had a fantastic day and thoroughly enjoyed playing field hockey with the other children. It was a truly exciting and rewarding day for Carly and her fellow athletes. We are very grateful to all the coaches and volunteers that made the event possible!”


USA Field Hockey invites all members of the field hockey community to join in paving the way for disability inclusive field hockey. USA Field Hockey is hosting a free webinar for people to learn more about All Starz Field Hockey, become part of the All Starz network, and learn from leaders and athletes involved in the adaptive field hockey community.


“Creating opportunities for inclusion in physical activity for people living with disability can help eliminate such barriers by changing perceptions, emphasizing strengths and abilities, promoting personal resilience, and having an onward impact on inclusion in society.” (Carty et al., 2021).


Together, we can pave the way for disability inclusive field hockey. Join us and register today!


Wednesday, April 19, 2023

8:00 p.m. ET / 5:00 p.m. PT

Register Here


If you have any questions about All Starz or are interested in starting a program in your community, please reach out to Jenna Ortega, USA Field Hockey’s Youth Engagement Manager or Sally Goggin, USA Field Hockey’s National Development Director, at

Carty, C., van der Ploeg, H. P., Biddle, S. J. H., Bull, F., Willumsen, J., Lee, L., Kamenov, K., & Milton, K. (2021). The First Global Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior Guidelines for People Living With Disability. Journal of Physical Activity & Health18(1), 86–93.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2023, January 5). Disability impacts all of us infographic. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved March 10, 2023, from