Balance Board Training for Hockey Players

Finally!  Woke up this morning to a wee dusting of snow out in the yard and despite the forecast for more rain this morning, it has held on as snow, much to my joy!  WooHOOOO!

Then I head into our sun room to have my morning protein shake with frozen berries and watch some SportCentre only to see that one of the athletes I work with at Revolution Conditioning in the summer has been called up to the NHL from his AHL team!  So to my friend Jim in Nashville – keep an eye out for my boy Kyle Wilson as he will suit up for your Preds in the next game.  Like all the athletes I train at Revolution, Kyle is a tremendously hard worker and a great guy.  If you need to customize your Android smart phone, he is your man!  Oh yeah, he has also won two Calder Cups and the last time I checked he was leading his AHL team in points.

So with my day off to a great start I want to share two things with you today…

1) Off-Ice Training for Goalies Q&A

I am going to share a replay of the Private Q&A call I did with members of the Rapid Response Goalie Training group on Monday night.  It was nice to have the chance to sit down and answer your questions in a live setting.  You can get the replay here – Off-Ice Goalie Training Q&A

2)  Balance Board Training for Hockey Players

I had an email from one of you a few weeks ago showing me how you made a sweet balance board out of plywood and a section of PVC pipe.  It was great and I think you said it cost you all of about $5 for the material.  Then you asked – “What the heck do I do with it now?”  So here are some ideas for incorporating balance board training for hockey in written and of course video format.

The balance board is a great tool, but remember its primary role – developing balance and training your stabilizers.  Some trainers confuse the role of balance training by thinking – wow, this is hard.  If I put a 185lbs barbell on this guy’s back it would be even harder!  I like hard, so let’s do that.

Remember, every exercise has a purpose, so if you are training stability, let that be your emphasis.  If you are training strength, then let that be your emphasis.  Does that mean you cannot incorporate elements of strength when working on balance?  Not it does not, just be aware that you cannot maximize force production while standing on an unstable surface.  Let me show you in a few examples that I will demonstrate in the video…

  • Balance – neutral stance, off-set stance
  • Dynamic Balance – squatting, hopping, hand tracing
  • Whole Body Stabilization – BG Pec Fly, SA Shoulder Press
  • Upper Body – Push Up variations

Anytime you incorporate balance board training for hockey workouts, just make sure you know what you are trying to train.  Then ask yourself, what could go wrong here?  Could I do myself some serious harm?  If you know what you are trying to train and given the worst case scenario, you would not do yourself serious harm, then away you go.

Happy training,