GTP TV Episode 33: Post Game Recovery

Hey gang, it’s Marie here from Welcome to Goalie Training Pro TV, episode 32 if you can believe it? Or 33? Maybe 33.


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But anyway, I spoke about it a bit last week and I knew there would be questions about it. So two of the things, three of the things actually that I find when I go to camps that’s the most striking to me is that goalies, and this is all levels, this is even like the pro groups.

They don’t have a good mobility program. They have sort of a “routine,” but it isn’t a strategic mobility program. It’s just kind of some stretches.

Then you don’t have a good warm up before you go on the ice. That you use every time before you go on the ice, not just “Oh, this is a big game, I better do my warm up.”

And then the third piece is that you don’t have a good restorative strategy for when you come off the ice. And again, when you come off the ice every time, not just after a big game.

So you know, before we go on the ice, we want to get our body ready. We want to do almost a circle check. So we do some self-myofascial release, we’ll do some static stretch, we’ll do dynamic movement to help our balance and our nervous system get firing.

Then we’ll do a little bit of quickness. Very little, so we’re not tiring ourselves out, but we’re you know, getting those muscles firing quickly. Little bit of hand eye. And then we go out and we kill it.

But when we come off the ice, that’s when we want to bring our body back down to resting. Those muscles have been a little bit traumatized.

You know, it’s like, if you’ve ever watched a marathon on TV or been to a marathon. You know, I can tell you from personal experience. When you finish a marathon, you don’t feel like, “Oh, I better get a lacrosse ball and start rolling on my hip flexors.”

Or you know, “I better do some aggressive stretching.” ‘Because your muscles have been traumatized. They’re sore. So what you want is to go to the massage tent and get a nice, not a vigorous massage, but get just a a nice, I think they might call it like effleurage or something. They have a very nice French word. But like a nice flushing type of massage.

So that’s where we’re going to start.

I think a foam roll is actually going to be a little bit better tool. Now if you only have a lacrosse ball, and you’re like, “I’m not gonna carry a lacrosse ball and a foam roll and all this stuff in my bag.” I totally get it, but I’m just saying, I think it’s a little gentler on your muscles.

‘Cause I don’t want to be getting in there like “erg.” And like lots of pressure like the lacrosse ball. I just want to be getting in and giving a nice massage.

Ideally, you would do this before you leave the rink, but I totally understand too, sometimes there are restrictions and there’s just no time.

Do it as soon as you can after you’ve come off the ice, whatever that is.

We’re just gonna start nice and easy. You know, you’ll get a little bit of rolling on your calves. And again, I don’t want to spend a lot of time and you know, I think the best program is a program that you’re gonna do. So we could make something that’s 40 minutes long. Well, you’re not gonna do 40 minute recovery after you come off the ice. So if we make one that’s like 10 or 15, that’s pretty doable.

So, you just spend about 30 seconds. You’ll do it on both sides. So nice and easy there.

Then you’ll come nice and easy. Not on your shin bone, so if you watch the video you’ll see how I’ve got my foot turned in. So I’m on the outside of that shin, so I’m not on my shin bone at all. But just again, I’m not putting a lot of pressure. I’m using my hands and my other leg to take off that pressure.

I can come onto my quadriceps. Again, I’m using my arms to sort of help support me. I’m getting the sides. The middle. The inside.

And then I can come in to get my adductors. Not aggressive. I like to split it up kind of, outer third, middle third, inner third. And I always move my leg around, so I’ll go into an internal rotation. Neutral. Little externally rotated, to work that.

You can do your IT… not really your IT band. Kind of the back border. So, the back border of it. Gently, I’m using my other leg and my hand. It’s not like a toughness thing, like “Oh, I can do it.” It’s like, “No, we just want to let our muscles tend to signal.”

We want to get them just to relax. You know, a nice slow pace.

You can get on your lats. It’s not gonna feel the same as when you do it. It’s not gonna hurt as much. I’m not trying to make it hurt.

You can get on your glutes. Rolling across.

On your hip flexors.

So those are kind of the areas that I would target.

Then I would put away the foam roll and come into a sideline. So lying on my side and just using my arm straight out to rest my head. Your bottom knee can be bent to give me balance.

Your top leg, I want it to be in a straight line. And I’m gonna reach overhead and I’m gonna reach with my heel, and kind of let gravity just take those down.

What I feel in terms of a stretch is, a little stretch kind of in my side. And what I’m going to do in this position is breathe in through my nose for four seconds. I’m gonna hold my breath for four seconds with full, trying to breathe into my side as much as I can, and then I’ll breathe out through my mouth for six seconds. And I’ll do three on each side.

And I’m trying to breathe out all my air over those six seconds. So I’m not blowing it out all at once. You know, I’m just slowly letting it out. When I breathe in, I want to breathe in maximal air. When I breathe out, I want to breathe out all my air. And you’ll be surprised.

Now you’ll notice in this routine that breathing is a huge part of it. Breathing is the only part of our autonomic nervous system, so that’s kind of our automatic nervous system, and the only part of our… well sympathetic nervous system is sort of our “fight or flight” system. Which kind of gets fired up when you’re in a game, and it’s part of the autonomic nervous system.

Breathing is the only part of that that we can consciously control. You know, we can’t consciously be like, “I’m going to make my blood pressure go down now.”

You know? It doesn’t work.

So, even think of a time even when you’ve just been anxious and “huh, huh, huh.” You know, kind of get panicked, and you can just breathe. “huh, huh.” So we’re trying to help restore. ‘Cause one of the things that you guys tell me is that when you come home from a game, or when you’ve played a game, it’s hard to just settle down.

Especially if it’s a night game and you have to go to bed. It’s hard to just get your body, you know, ready to go back to bed. So here we can just try to, “Okay, that crisis is passed.” Even though it’s fun and it’s exciting, it’s still sort of a stressful crisis to your body. Just like, yeah, relax. Let’s get back to base level. Let’s get those hormones back to base level, and just start that recovery process.

So that’s why breathing is a big part of it. We’ll do that on each side just to sort of help lengthen that out.

I don’t mind you stretching your groins a little bit, but just a very gentle little dynamic stretch. Again, almost a little circle check too, so you can see like, “Wow. That right groin feels really tight now.” You know, and then you can keep an eye on it tomorrow.

But just nice and gentle. Not an aggressive stretch. You would do that on each side.

You would come in and do a little bit of a T-spine rotation. Just gentle. Each way.

From there we would go into a rock back. So keeping a good neutral back position. Just sitting back with your hips and coming down with your torso so that you stay sort of parallel to the floor. I think this is a really good one for helping to kind of seat the head of your femur back in the center of your hip joint.

You’ll notice we’re not doing a big hip flexor stretch because I think sometimes that can drive the head forward. And I talked to physios too who kind of tell me that they sometimes stay away from it a bit for that reason. Not that you have to stay away from it forever, but I think just when you come off the ice, we want to really reinforce centrating that hip joint again.

And then you know, there are other techniques that we could use.

If you’re in the Shout Out Academy, you’ll see this is where we would use some of the PRI adduction and abduction to help recenter the hips.

This is also where at the very end, the very last thing we would do, and I’m not gonna cover it today. I actually did a whole episode on it, and again, it’s a little more involved. It’s in the Shout Out Academy modules, if you’re in that, you’ll know what I mean, but this is when I’ll put an ELDOA at the very, very end. Often the one with your feet on the wall.

So that we’re getting a little bit of relaxation, elevating those legs. Helping you know, to get some blood return. But also the breathing and the lengthening of the spine and sort of the restacking of the segments to get that alignment back. And then from there, so ELDOA with the feet on the wall, and then from there, we would just do, with your feet. I’m lying on my microphone now.

With your feet on the wall, just a groin stretch, like a passive groin stretch. So your bum is against the wall, your legs are on the wall, and you’re coming into a groin stretch. Just not just forcing it, just letting gravity kind of take you into that stretch position.

And we would hold that. That would be our last thing. We would hold that for two minutes.

So again, if you don’t know the PRI and the ELDOA that’s totally fine. Yeah, they’re almost, ELDOA, I did a whole Goalie Training Pro TV episode on it, so you can find that on YouTube. But yeah, they’re just that involved that I don’t want to sort of glance over them.

But you can do this whole routine, finishing with that passive stretch with your legs on the wall for two minutes. Again, breathing in through your nose for four seconds, holding for four seconds, and then breathing out through your mouth for six seconds.

So yeah. The best way you can maximize your performance for your next game or practice is to maximize your recovery as soon as you come off the ice. So it’s an important thing too, and it’s very simple to do. It should only take ten, maybe 15 minutes.

So, that’s what I got for you today on Goalie Training Pro TV. I hope you’re having an awesome week. I hope that your tryouts, your camps, your pre-season games, wherever you’re at, are going fantastic.

Make sure you let me know how they’re going. If you have any questions, just email them to and I’ll answer them live on my weekly Q&A.

Some of you have heard the rumours that the butterfly challenge is being revised, and we’re bringing out a butterfly challenge 3.0. The rumours are true. Stay tuned. People on the email list, you’ll hear about it first, as always. Then people in the Goalie Training lab, which is just a private Facebook group that’s just for goalies who are passionate about becoming better and who aren’t jerks.

So if you want to be a part of that, just search “Goalie Training Lab” on Facebook, and ask to join. ‘Cause either I’ll look it up, or Sarah will look it up and if you are not a goalie, or don’t have like a goalie in your profile picture or like, we click and we just don’t see anything about goalies, you don’t get in. And nobody rips anybody, it’s just kind of helpful little club we got going on.

So then you get sneak peeks at things like new modules and stuff like that. So that’s the scoop gang. Have a good one. I will catch you later. Bye bye.

See you!