Never Do This During Play-Offs

It is the most exciting time of the season, but it can also be the most stressful. You see teams that shine year after year (thinking LA Kings) and teams that collapse (we can all think of a few). As we head into that time of the season for many of you, let’s look at how you can help your team shine.

Just like the regular season, on any day, any team can lay an egg. A play-off ready player does not panic, does not try to do it alone. Continue doing your job, listen to your coach; they can see the entire game in an objective way – do what they tell you.

That is the most important thing – continue to be a good team player and continue to be coachable.

I had a question from one of my Turning Pro coaching clients about trying a new sport drink for the his first play-off game and this got me thinking about other tempting distractions come play-offs…

  • Don’t switch up your pre-game meal (unless you are eating garbage). Don’t decide that instead of grilled chicken, sweet potato and veggies, you are going to try chili for your pre-game meal.
  • Don’t change your warm-up right before a game
  • Keep the same sport drink
  • Don’t start working out like crazy so you will be fit for play-offs
  • Don’t mess with your equipment
  • Don’t arrive at the rink earlier or later than usual (unless the coach wants you there)

You Can Change Any Of These Things

I’m not saying you must eat grilled chicken before every game or that you can never change any of those items. I am saying, don’t change them right before a play-off game.

Want to give some chili a test drive? – do it before a practice.

Gonna adjust your pads like Lundquist? – test it out during a practice.

Wanna try Biosteel sport drink? – fill your bottle for practice and see how it goes.

You get the idea.

So if there is something you are thinking of switching up, maybe your pre-game nutrition involves a drive-thru, or you don’t do any off-ice warm-up, my advice is to make the change, these are positive changes, but do it before play-offs if possible. This will let you can give it a good test drive when the season isn’t on the line.

The Turning Pro client was on the eve of his play-offs, so I told him to wait until the next practice and give it a test then. If it sits fine in his stomach, then he is good to go!


PS – Turning Pro is the private online coaching program I run for players looking to land a scholarship, get drafted or turn pro in the next 5 years or less. It is currently open for applications until the end of the weekend.  Once I fill the one remaining spot it will be closed to new members.  Click here to see how we can dramatically increase your chances of achieving your goals.