Skate-side down. Balance Test.

balance drills for hockeyBefore I give you the balance competency test for hockey players, here’s what we were up to over the weekend.

You know the saying ‘Spring has sprung’ – WOW, has it ever!  We have had the most beautiful weather over the last five days – including this past weekend – it has be awesome.  Over the weekend we celebrated orthodox Easter as an homage to my Yia Yia.  Now, in our family, ‘celebrating’ Easter means going to the Greek market and having a family dinner.  It was very nice.

The hockey groups at Revolution started this past week and our athletes showed up ready to work.  It is an exciting time and before we know it the 16-weeks will have sailed past and the players will be heading back to their training camps.

Can you pass this balance test?

You know that I do not think players under 13/14 years of age should be doing sport specific off-ice training, but this post is for the little guys and gals who are just starting to develop their passion for hockey.

I had a question a few months ago from a Dad asking for some drills that would help his son keep his blades on the ice – apparently they were getting away from him occasionally and he would end up on his rear in the crease.

I am guessing that some of it has to do with the bulk and weight of the equipment, so with time and more time on the ice, his body will start to recognize the pads as an extension of his body.

I hope his coach or goalie coach take some time to get him moving in different ways on the ice, ways that challenge him to expand his skating skill.  I love tag or ‘Simon Says’ for this type of thing.

For off-ice, I think it is reasonable to work on both static and dynamic balance.

Static Balance Drills For Hockey

A good static balance progression is:

  • Single Leg Balance x 60s each leg
  • Eyes Closed Balance Single Leg Balance x 60s each leg
  • Single Leg Balance with Hand Tracing

Dynamic Balance Drills For Hockey

Dynamic balance training can follow the same progression but with an external perturbation which can be ‘taps’ from a training partner.  Fifteen to thirty taps on each leg is a good training stimulus.

Make sure the taps are progressively more random and always let your child regain their balance between taps.

This type of practice can be done daily, but do not overdo it – one set of one static exercise is good to start.

Once your child can progress through each static balance exercise, then you can add one dynamic exercise.  At that time the workout will be one Static balance exercise and one Dynamic balance exercise.

Hope you enjoy those – I think they are pretty fun.
Cheers,
M

PS – if you are a skater and you need a detailed blueprint telling you and showing you exactly what to do for your off-ice training over the next few months, then stay tuned.  I am putting the finishing touches on my latest masterpiece and this one is just for skaters.  My goal is to launch it to only my email list within the next 7-days.

hockey goalie workouts