October 29, 2019 4:54 pm
When one of the most exciting parts of the game presents itself – “the breakaway”, don’t waste this one on one opportunity to light the lamp! Whether you’re watching a game on TV, or a youth practice or game, here’s some next level secrets that will make all the difference!
- Your attack speed is a vital element on your side. Understanding when you should be skating at full speed to push a goalie back in their crease, or when to slow down (time permitting) to allow you to out wait the goalie. The speed and timing of your approach is crucial!
- This features your stick handling ability, as well as your lateral (side to side) movement with your head and shoulders. The sneakier the better! Remember, when stick handling, its the top hand that drives each cradle of the puck!
- If possible, take an angle in your approach to the net. This will challenge the goalies positioning in net. The more you’re able to get a goalie moving side to side, the more holes will open.
Have a safe and fun Halloween!
October 14, 2019 1:21 pm
As a player, you work your tail off to put yourself in a position to get a shot on net. Be sure to make each and every shot count! Here’s a few pro tips that should be racing through your head just before you take that picturesque shot:
- Use Key Fundamentals
- Flex. Let the flex of your stick do the work. This is what adds speed and power. Your top hand “pulls” at the same time your bottom hand “pushes”.
- Blade Positioning. Your blade needs to ALWAYS stay closed (and cupped) over the puck. The second the face of the blade opens; a bad shot will follow.
- Follow Through. Turn your wrists over at the end of your shot allowing an accurate, powerful follow through.
- Total Body. Its not just your arms. Engage your legs and core muscles to add power to your shot!
- Heads up – Placement Matters!
- The hardest shot in the game still won’t go through a goalie! Take that split second and pick up your head to lock in your sights on where you’re shooting! When in doubt, keep the puck low to allow a rebound for a teammate driving the net!!!
- Release Speed
- You shouldn’t be counting out “Mississippi’s” during your shot release. Get the puck to your loaded position at the back of your stance ASAP, then trust your fundamentals to drive that shot from the loaded position to the final point of the release as quickly as humanly possible!
We can’t wait to watch the goals pour in this season!
October 1, 2019 3:43 pm
As physical as the game of hockey is, so much more is mental than you’ll ever believe! Resilient, mentally tough athletes (and people) always find a way to succeed! I believe there are 3 different scenarios that will test your mental toughness as a hockey player:
- Managing uncontrollabes.
- Your favorite stick broke, the ice sucks, the ref made a bad call, the coach changed the lines… Acknowledge them, see them as challenges and realign your efforts.
- Self-inflicted mistakes – Have a short memory!
- Being properly prepared to perform will eliminate a lot of mistakes right out of the gate. With the self-inflicted mistakes of poor play, develop an in-game routine of controlled breathing and visualization to calm down while re-focusing to get your mind back in the game.
- Safely playing through pain + discomfort.
- This is not regarding serious injuries. More so, when you feel that burn in your legs, or your trying to catch your breath, or knowing that blister is killing you – Dig deep and find a way to persevere!
Be the best warrior version of yourself you can be this season!
September 9, 2019 4:38 pm
A new season! A fresh start, a clean slate! You only get one first impression – Make the most of it! Start the year off the right way:
o Some short term, easily attainable, others, big picture and months away from achieving. Speak them into existence!
o What better time than TODAY to take action! Don’t ease into the year, get after it early!
o Success will always follow preparation. Set your athlete up to be as successful as possible this season! Academics, Practice + Games, Nutrition, and Rest + Recovery should all be highlighted in the game plan!
Let your off-season training take over this fall! We’re so excited to watch everyone’s growth and goal crushing efforts this season!
May 10, 2019 10:18 pm
After nearly 30 years of being involved in the sport in every capacity I’m a firm believer that reflecting in a few key areas has brought some of the greatest rewards!
Living in the moment
Ride the highs and never let the lows bring you down! Celebrate the positive, filter the negative, and grow from the mistakes. Treat every opportunity like its game 7!
Embracing the process
The “process” is an ever-evolving journey of your development as an athlete setting out to accomplish goals. Your journey is always changing as goals, passions, and expectations should shift. If you ever think you’ve arrived, you’re in the wrong place.
Perspective & Gratitude
Your perspective is what truly makes everything so fulfilling. Be honest with yourself and fully understand where you’ve come, and where you want to go! Gratitude is a special experience never lose sight of how fortunate we are for our abilities, resources, and accomplishments.
We can’t wait for huge off-season of growth and gains!
April 21, 2019 1:20 pm
Just because you’re not on the ice as much as you would be in season doesn’t mean you can’t be putting in the work in other parts of your game! For all of our athletes not yet in a gym consistently or working with performance training specialists here’s some simple key factors to work into your home training regimen!
- Agility foot speed ladder
- Sprinting – focus on short bursts
- Agility cone drills – focused on aggressive, cutting patterns.
- Jump rope
- Body weight pushups, squats
- Any type of jumping exercises
- Squat jumps, tuck jumps, single leg jumps, lateral jumping
- Single leg balance exercises
- Hill or Stair running
- Band resistance exercises.
- Jogging for distance or time
- Join Mom at a spinning class!
- CORE STRENGTH
- Countless number of ab and core exercises.
Don’t worry about getting too hung up about “hockey specific” workouts. Focus on improving athleticism, with some added attention on speed and power. The main mission is to build a foundation, so when you’re throwing around weights in the years to come your body is prepared to make some serious gains!
Looking for some extra professional guidance? Let us know! We’ve got some awesome industry contacts!
April 11, 2019 12:34 am
Often times you’ll hear the word “grit” get thrown around. It can vary in meaning based on the circumstances. But, what does it really mean? I like to think of it as:
Made up of hustle, passion, and perseverance.
Grit encompasses a player’s ability to “find a way”. Grit can be physical, just as much as it can be mental. Some will say grit is a character trait ~ you either have it or you don’t… Sure, that can be true for some. However, I would also argue that grit is a skill, and like all skills, it can be learned, and improved upon over time. Regardless of how you choose to view someone’s grit, it’s essential. Not only in hockey, but in life!
Always be on the hustle. Never lose the passion. Persevere no matter what!
March 25, 2019 1:49 am
There’s no better time than the present to sit down and write down your off-season goals. As we move into the spring, what a perfect time to constructively criticize your game and create plan of attack on how you’re going to improve and take your game to the next level! Visualize your goals into existence. Start with a few simple, short terms goals that will build your confidence and generate some momentum. Then target your larger, long-term objectives which are months on the horizon!
Remember, a goal without a plan is just a wish!
February 26, 2019 9:15 pm
Being a “bubble” player… To the many young players living in the bubble, rest assured, you’re not alone. I spent many of my formidable years in this frustrating space – being good, but often times falling short of the end goal. Here’s some key concepts that will help burst that bubble and lead to future successes.
- No matter what, there can never be any quit! Every NO, gets you that much closer to the YES you’re looking for! Valuable lessons are learned with falling short of your goals!
- Jump off the page
- You MUST compete with an extremely high level of desperation! Make a panel of evaluators say, “Wow, who’s that?”OR “We love that kid’s heart and hustle!”
- Find Your Role
- An extension of “Being A Swiss Army Knife”… What role or series of contributions can you make to a specific team that will make you a desired player?
Looking back on my career, life in the bubble (where I spent A LOT of time) was the best thing for me – I’d take that over life on “easy street” any day! The adversity shaped my character and put the growth of my mental toughness into hyper drive!
February 14, 2019 1:06 am
Being a Swiss Army Knife – The ultimate compliment!Simply, this is a player’s ability to carry and excel at many skills. Sure, being very good at specific traits helps catch an early eye… However, the players that stand the test of time in their careers and ultimately “make it”,are the ones who have the capacity to bring many quality traits to the table at the same time that better their team. These (positive) shape shifting, utility players are ready and able to contribute however they’re called upon.
Swiss Army Knife Players are…
- Good at a number of skills. Versus only dominating one or two.
- Not hung up on what role they play on that team.
- Great teammates. Prioritizing how they can help the team.
- They can do a little bit of everything!
- Necessary on every successful roster.
Swiss Army Knife Player are NOT…
- Worried about their “role” or “place” on a team.
- Single skill focused.
Sure, every team can use a star… Never forget for every star on a team there’s 2-3 Swiss Army knife players that fly under the radar, that are an invaluable piece to that team’s success!