Checking is one of the most demanding skills in hockey and also one of the most overlooked by players coaches and fans. It is probably the least glamorous of all skills but one of the most important when it comes to defensive team play. Checking is a skill designed to
USA Hockey strongly discourages checking from behind but if it should happen while you′re facing the boards get your stick and gloves up to spread out the area of impact. Use your arms as shock absorbers.
It′s important to keep your head up when passing the puck. Most bad passes are caused by not looking up to spot your intended target. You should also be aware of where you are on the ice. Blind cross-ice passes are the leading cause of grey hairs among hockey coaches.
A flip or saucer pass is the most effective pass when you have a man between you and your intended target. A good saucer pass floats eight to 10 inches off the ice and lands flat close to the blade of a teammate′s stick. Practice is the key. You don′t
WORK ETHIC AND FITNESS You need to be the hardest worker and most fit player on your team. New York Rangers goalie Mike Richter won the fitness award every year. Hall of Famer Ed Belfour used to run triathlons. St. Louis′ Brian Elliott is the hardest-working goalie I′ve ever coached.
I think the backhand shot is one of the most seldom used but effective shots in a sniper′s arsenal especially when taken from in close. Sometimes you don′t have the time to move the puck onto your forehand. That′s where a backhand shot comes into play.
One of the reasons the backhand shot is not used as much anymore is because of the invention of the curved stick. So many players today have such a big hook in their blade that it′s really tough to take an effective and accurate backhand shot.
Don't forget the parents. Most coaches kick off the season with a parents' meeting to lay down a few ground rules discuss philosophies and map out a course for the season. That's all well and good when the season is young and everyone is refreshed and ready to go. Keep
HAND SKILLS With the advancement of the butterfly save in the early to mid-1990s goaltenders started perfecting their on-ice coverage and the use of their hands was a bit forgotten. Catching a puck means possession for your team and rebounds off your blocker are steered to the corner. In warmup
Some people say that when you′re coming in on a breakaway or penalty shot you should have a strategy of what you want to do before you get to the goalie. I think you have to take what the goalie gives you. If he comes out to cut down the
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