THE Commonwealth Games effect is still being felt in Glasgow - six months after the event.

New figures reveal there has been a massive 43% rise in netball club membership, and an increase of 58% across Scotland, since some of the world's top players performed at the peak of their abilities to sell-out audiences last summer.

"Not a lot of people knew much about netball but since the Games and now with it being televised they are keen to play," said Rachel Forbes, Netball Scotland's Bounce Back to Netball co-ordinator.

"We're seeing people from 16 to over 60 years of age."

The programme has teamed up with Glasgow Life's Get Your Bib project to encourage more people to play the sport.

Many are coming back who haven't taken part in the game since school days.

There are a number of competitive clubs across the city, however the Bouce Back to Netball and Get Your Bib programmes are available to everyone, from beginners to those you haven't played for years.

"It provides the fun factor; being in a team of varying skill levels who haven't played for a while but are getting together for the social aspect as well as working on a bit of fitness," added Rachel.

"It's fun, it's something different, you're not going to the gym and running on a treadmill."

A full netball match runs for 60 minutes, split into 15-minute quarters. But the Bounce Back sessions are much shorter, from five to 10-minute quarters, to ease newcomers in gently.

"It's a full workout, you get a good cardio workout because of all the running around with short bursts of sprints," said Rachel.

"There's a bit of an arm workout because of the throwing and catching, then you're dodging, jumping and there's a workout for legs. It's great for your balance and co-ordination to get those endorphins going.

"We're encouraging everyone, men and women over the age of 16, to come and try, whether they've never played netball before or haven't played in years - just come along and give it a go. It's a lot of fun. There are varying age groups and skill levels."

On the last Sunday of every month Glasgow Life runs a Get Your Bib session, open to all ages and abilities over the age of 16. It last two hours and costs £4.50. A gentle introduction to the team game, it is perfect for newcomers.

Netball Scotland Bounce Back to Netball sessions will be starting across the city soon, costing £3, and on your second week you become a social member of Netball Scotland, which means you can attend any session in Scotland.

You also get a Get Your Bib On and Bounce Back to Netball t-shirt, playing insurance, log-in details for the members' section of the Netball Scotland website and a 30% discount on Gilbert merchandise.

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