By Emily Goddard

backtohockey berlei p rgbFebruary 17 - England Hockey has signed up Berlei as its official sports bra supplier in a deal that also sees the brand become the official partner of its Back to Hockey initiative.

The partnership, which will run until after the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, means, as well as supplying its sport-specific bras to the England and London 2012 bronze medal winning Great Britain women's teams, Berlei, which is also involved with the 2013 School Sports Games, will work with the athletes to design a new sports bra for hockey.

Meanwhile, the Back to Hockey programme will be promoted as "Back to Hockey, supported by Berlei", offering informal hockey sessions for women looking to stay in shape and have fun in a team environment without the need to commit to ongoing club membership, regular training and competition schedules.

As part of the agreement, participants of the scheme will receive offers on Berlei products, as well as educational materials helping them to understand how to find the right sports bra for them.

Britain won a bronze medal at the London 2012 OlympicsThe British women's hockey squad won a bronze medal at the London 2012 Olympics

"With an Olympic bronze medal to our name, the launch of Back to Hockey and 30,000 more people playing hockey, I'm thrilled that Berlei is joining the Hockey Nation," Jonathan Cockcroft, England Hockey's commercial and membership manager, said.

"Berlei and England Hockey share common goals in promoting women's participation in sport and providing them with the tools they need to enjoy playing hockey at every level.

"Our elite athletes continue to inspire generations of girls and women on the pitch and we are looking forward to working with Berlei to design a product that will be specific to the growing hockey market."

Berlei's managing director, Tony Jarvis, added: "We are incredibly excited to collaborate with England and Great Britain Hockey; to not only work with their talented elite squads, but to also help inspire more women to benefit from physical activity.

"Our aim is to provide the highest technological and specialist support for women of all ages.

"We will be working closely with the National Governing Body to educate young girls about the importance of wearing a well-fitting sports bra as soon as they are physically active."

England's women have just returned home from South Africa where they managed a repeat of the British performance at the London 2012 Olympics to secure a bronze medal at the Investec Challenge.

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