High Intensity Interval Training for Hockey

Without turning the post into a literature review, I hope that you are getting the idea that long steady state cardio training is not only mind numbingly boring, but also not your most effective way to develop aerobic or anaerobic power.

If I told you that you could get more benefit from your hockey training in less time, you would be pretty interested wouldn’t you?  Well, step right, up because that is exactly what I have for you today.

This whole High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) started with research by a Japanese physiologist by the name of Tabata.  Dr. Tabata found that subjects who exercised at 170% of their VO2max (full out sprint) for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of rest and repeated 8 times (for a total of 4 minutes – yes only four minutes) showed greater improvements in both aerobic and anaerobic power when compared to subjects training at 70% of their VO2max for 60-minutes.

Wow – that sounds almost too good to be true doesn’t it.  Add to that the fact that this type of HIIT also leads to more calories burned (during and after) an exercise bout and it almost sounds like the holy grail of energy system development.

So the goal is no longer adding duration, but adding intensity.  The rough target is 15-30 second work intervals followed by equal to double the rest and continuing that for 4-10 minutes continuously per set.  Depending on the level and the goals of the athlete, 2 or more sets can be used.

This is not a new idea, in fact it is the philosophy that helped shape the Rapid Response Goalie Training System that has been helping busy goalies get in 60-minutes worth of training in only 20-30 minutes without even going to the gym.  We know it works.

What I want to give you today are a few high intensity combos that skaters or goalies can use to build their aerobic and anaerobic power (read: help you go at a higher intensity for a longer duration before your legs fill with cement).

I do hope you like them – it might not be fun when you are doing them, but you will feel great when you are finished and you will certainly like the results on the ice.

Now, this it high intensity work, so if you have not been cleared by your health care provider to do sprint training, then you better sit this one out.  As always, make sure you get familiar with the movements before going full speed ahead.

I explain everything you need to know in terms of sets and reps in the video below.

High Intensity Interval Training for Hockey


If you are interested in a complete goalie specific training program with workouts you can do at home in 20-30 minutes, you might want to check out the Rapid Response Goalie Training System