January 1, 2021 4:52 pm
When looking for a new stick one of the most important features of the stick to be considered is the curve of the blade. The curve of the blade is what helps a player control the puck while stickhandling, and shooting according to their playing style. There are many varieties of curves, but the three most common curve types are the heal curve, toe curve, and the mid-heal curve. Each type of curve helps a player within different aspects of puck handling and shooting. If a player’s curve does not align with their playing style, it can be more difficult for them to handle the puck where they need to and when they need to. Let’s talk through some of the most popular stick curves and understand how they work:
A blade with a heal curve is a blade in which the curve begins near the base of the blade on the heal. With the curve starting at the base of the heal of the blade, the curve will begin to flatten out towards the middle of the blade and be completely flat at the toe. This curve mainly helps out defensive players who need to have more powerful and accurate snapshots and slap shots, as well as control bouncing pucks.
A blade with a toe curve is a blade which the curve is very prominent at the toe of the blade. This type of curve is completely flat at the heal, with the curve beginning towards the middle of the blade, and being very prominent towards the toe of the blade. This curve is mainly for forwards who need to shot the puck quickly, and control the puck in very tight spaces.
A blade with a mid-heal curve is the most general and popular curve type. This curve type is the most balanced of the three main curve types, as the largest depth of the curve is right in the middle of the blade. This type of curve is used by players who tend to stickhandle and pass the puck more. This curve is also great for backhand shots as well!
Now when you go and buy a stick, make sure you check out what kind of curve the blade has and which type of curve is best for YOUR game!
December 1, 2020 4:30 pm
We can all agree that hockey is by far the best sport in the world, there is no doubt about it. While hockey is the best sport in the world, there are plenty of other sports and activities which can help us improve at the best sport in the world! It is important to remember that while hockey is the most fun sport, it is not the only sport, and those other sports can help us be better hockey players!
Here are some other sports (but not the only sports) which can help us improve our general athleticism and refine our on-ice skills:
- Some of the best hockey players in the world also grew up playing lacrosse! Lacrosse requires great hand-eye coordination, superior conditioning, and an understanding of body positioning and ball protection. All three skills directly translate to hockey!
- Football is a great sport to learn all about grit and competition! Football is one of the most physical sports you can play. By playing football athletes learn a great deal about body positioning, taking and giving physical contact, as well as understanding the importance of teamwork. Sounds a lot like hockey, to me!
- Soccer is a fantastic sport to improve one’s athleticism! Constant movement is required in order to be successful. While players on offense are moving around looking for open space, players on defense are focused on closing down those open spaces. Running while dribbling the ball around defenders is also great for balance and coordination, two skills very important in hockey!
- Basketball and hockey are two peas in a pod! Both games are played 5 on 5; both games are very fast and are filled with transitions; both games require players to jockey for body positioning. There’s a reason many coaches use hockey and basketball as interchangeable examples of each other!
Being an athlete is one of the most important skills you can have in hockey. The only way you can be an athlete is if you try other sports while you can when you’re young! Not only will you develop other skills that you will be able to apply to hockey, but the psychological and social aspect of trying other sports is more important than you think!
November 9, 2020 3:24 pm
As we all have said and heard many times over the past six months, these are certainly crazy times we are living in. All of the uncertainty has put many of us in a position where we are unsure when things will be back to normal, and if we get to continue to do our favorite things with our favorite people. One of the most important things we can do for ourselves is to maintain a positive perspective. It is on YOU as a human being to take all of the negativity and in turn, create a positive perspective on things going on around us!
While some of us may not be able to go into school, hang out with our friends, or even not be able to play in hockey games, it is very important that we remember to stay positive and look at the situation from a different, and positive perspective! If you are participating in online school think about all of the time you get to spend at home with your family. If you’re not able to hang out with your friends in your free time, take that time to learn about something you’re interested in or help your family around the house. If you are not able to play games with your regular-season team, think about all the practice time you will have to improve your skills.
As athletes, and as human beings, it is our job to maintain a positive perspective. While it may be easy to look at a situation that doesn’t go your way with a negative attitude, it does you no good to do so. Understand the negatives, but make everything a positive!
March 30, 2017 3:00 am
An incredibly under-rated part of the year! Your approach to the off-season is key for your athlete’s development. Long-term strides of improvement and achieving your goals are ultimately made during the off-season! Here are a few key points of emphasis to work through as you move into your off-season:
- Establish a break
- No different than intermissions in the game. We need breaks! The worst thing you can do is let one season blend into the next. This is exactly how burnout happens. The mental break alone is HUGE. More times than not you’ll see your athlete return to the game refreshed and hungrier than ever!
- Develop your game plan
- Extremely important!!! Devise a plan of attack in exactly how you’re going to help your athlete make the necessary gains during the off time. Raw skill development & improvement, off-ice performance training, NUTRITION habits, balancing other commitments. Many of these topics should be discussed and a plan needs be established.
- Commit to the “process”
- Once you’ve built your game plan, commit to whatever it takes to achieving your goals! If it was easy, everyone would be playing in the NHL. Stay Determined. Stay Hungry. Stay Humble. Never lose sight of the fun!
“Without a plan, your dreams and goals are just wishes.” Here’s to a rewarding off-season of work and accomplishments!!!
March 13, 2017 7:41 pm
As you’re navigating through the tryout process naturally you probably start to ask yourself; “What’s the right program for my child?” The perfect program or team is unique to each and every player. Try using some of these points as you work to find your perfect program/team.
Is this coach honest? Does he/she make a positive impact on the athletes they work with? From a developmental perspective, what is the skill development and coaching philosophy? What are the coach’s goals and wants? Will this coach believe in my child? Their support and advocacy towards your child is everything!
What is the culture and environment of this team/program? How has the feedback been from past players, families, and trusted sources? Will my athlete be challenged to improve their play at this level?
Will your child enjoy playing for this team? Remember; positive experiences and enjoyment is ultimately what will fuel your athlete to reach their greatest heights!
Best of luck to our entire OHP Family with their upcoming tryouts, showcases, and big decisions!
March 1, 2017 2:34 pm
Lets talk about the elephant in the room, “tryouts”. First and foremost, embrace the process, and do your best to think big picture. No single season will ever dictate the trajectory of your child’s career. If your child makes the team, Great Job! If they fall short, encourage the principal that they’re fortunate to be learning such a quality lesson at a young age! Moving out of disappointment, set your goals – develop a game plan – and lets get to work! “Things will always turn out best for those who make the best out of the way things turn out.”
After a career of living in the land of uncertainty at the National and American Hockey League levels where literally everyday is a tryout. I believe the following qualities must be exemplified to ensure a positive tryout.
- Compete Level
- Your child has to want it, and more importantly EARN it! With every opportunity they’re granted, their effort level has to be relentless.
- Ability Level & Versatility
- No question supreme skill ability jumps off the page. However, every player in the world has deficiencies; and no player is great at everything. Players that are good at a lot of skills only help their overall odds. Be a Swiss Army knife of versatility. Every coach needs one of those.
- Unbelievably under-rated and under-appreciated. Do you ever wonder why or how “so and so made it…?” Timing. Being at the right opportunity and playing well at the right time, and finding the right team that needed what you offered.
Good luck to everyone in your upcoming tryouts!
February 15, 2017 6:07 pm
Now we’re playing for keeps! First and foremost congrats to all our athletes and families that have earned the privilege to play for a championship. Playing for a championship opportunity is a great reward after a long off-season and in-season of hard work, commitment, and performance. For those who fell just a bit short this season; bottle up that feeling of disappointment and let that positively fuel your efforts and goals for next year! Setbacks only build bigger comebacks!
As we make our way through the next few weeks of “win or go home” hockey try not to lose sight of a few key principals:
- What got you in here?
- Selflessness. Positive attitude. Don’t change your game now. The post-season is a tremendous opportunity to exemplify your inner-leader and perform in the clutch!
- Enjoy the ride!
- Performing under pressure, navigating through highs and lows, working together for a team goal; all invaluable life skills.
- Win or Lose like a CHAMPION!
- Regardless of the outcome, a true champion is ALWAYS measured by their character and integrity.
Seize the day, enjoy the moment everyone!