Mainland Eagles

About the Academy

The Academy is a Basketball New Zealand (BBNZ) endorsed programme which aims to help support the development of young people & coaches throughout the South Island. Through utilising basketball as the medium to open up academic, leadership and life experiences. As a result, basketball can be utilised to develop well rounded, educated & community service focused individuals who contribute to society in a positive manner.


About the Haasts Eagle

The Mainland Eagles Academy and logo is inspired by a specie of eagle that once lived in New Zealand, called the “Haast’s Eagle.”  The Haast’s Eagle only lived on the South Island and were considered to be the equivalent of a lion in New Zealand.

The Haast’s Eagle was the biggest, baddest most magnificent eagle ever to have existed in the world. It is known in Maori legend as “Pouākai” and there is little doubt that early settlers would have fallen victim to this most terrifying of aerial predators! In Māori mythology, the pouākai or poukai is a monstrous bird, and are even depicted in early rock-shelter paintings in South Canterbury.

The Mainland Eagles Academy logo represents the Academy being a South Island Regional Academy with the power, strength and majesty of the Haast’s Eagle representing how our athletes train, play and approach life in general.

An artist's impression of a Haast's eagle attacking two moa.

“I’ve seen improvements in many of the kids I’ve been able to work with. Over time kids develop more confidence in themselves and are open to discussing troubles they may be having in life. I’m excited to continue being a mentor and provide guidance for the kids of Christchurch. “

Mary Goulding

Eagles Alumni and Bendigo Spirit

Programme Outline

The Mainland Eagles Academy is a South Island regional programme to support junior player & coach development built upon our Mainland Eagles Curriculum. The Mainland Eagles collaborate with the regions throughout the South Island including contracting the Basketball Development Nelson Trust (BDNT) to deliver the programme in the Tasman region.  The Academy delivers an Annual South Island Residential Coaches Workshop in partnership with Basketball New Zealand which is targeted towards coaches of High School junior age teams.

Term 1

  • Eagles South Island Induction Camp
  • Weekly Trainings and S&C Sessions
  • Regular targeted Coach Development

Term 2 & 3

  • Weekly training and S&C session
  • Regular targeted Coach Development
  • Support school & club coaches in their development

Term 4

  • Eagles South Island Summer Camp & Residential Coaches Workshop
  • Weekly trainings and S&C sessions
  • Regular targeted Coach Development

Target Population

The Mainland Eagles Academy is for high school athletes & coaches from throughout the South Island. Junior players & coaches are identified through Mainland Eagles Academy Coaches and Managers in collaboration of the regional, association, club & school coaches.

Find out more about the Mainland Eagles programme