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-   -   21 years old, have 1 season under my belt, and i suck please help (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=907693)

CanuckGame39 04-25-2011 03:39 AM

21 years old, have 1 season under my belt, and i suck please help
hello, i have loved hockey all my life, but i grew up in a very poor family and was never able to play hockey until i was 17 and payed for it myself, i scored 2 goals that season and had 6 assists, the 2 goals were garbage tap ins haha ive always had so much passion, when i was a kid i used to love playing road hockey and hockey in p.e. i always did good in pe even against guys who played hockey their whole lives, so i thought that would translate well into ice hockey, but nope i was terrible. i played one year, had all the passion in the world but got discouraged at my skill level and felt humiliated because i was the worst player by far on my house league team.

i stopped playing out of embarrassment. and now im scared to start again even though its something i would LOVE to do, i have been a die hard hockey fan my whole life.

i just want to play next season very badly, but i want to actually be able to skate with most of the guys and compete

areas of my game that need DRASTIC improvement

-Shooting the puck (i can shoot a plastic street puck amazingly and im not sure why i have a hard time getting the puck off the ice i think this is because of my skating and balance etc...)

i feel that if i could skate properly and had strength on my skates i could be a competitive player out there and actually have fun instead of feeling sad because i feel i let my team mates down after every shift

does anyone have tips? or words of encouragement of people who have started at a older age and what their stories were?

i would really like to start playing again and stick with it this time because i am one of the most passionite hockey guys anyone would meet, but i need help to actually live my passion rather than watch it from the side lines.



Gino 14 04-25-2011 05:53 AM

Two pieces of advice, swallow your pride and get out and skate as often as you can. Unless you are a fool, you have to know that everyone had to start some time and no one was born with the ability to skate or play hockey. You can seek all the advice you want but in the end it comes to you putting in the ice time.

blueberrydanish 04-25-2011 07:38 AM


Originally Posted by CanuckGame39 (Post 32646534)

-Shooting the puck (i can shoot a plastic street puck amazingly and im not sure why i have a hard time getting the puck off the ice i think this is because of my skating and balance etc...)

i feel that if i could skate properly and had strength on my skates i could be a competitive player out there and actually have fun instead of feeling sad because i feel i let my team mates down after every shift

Skating is the biggest factor in hockey. Everything else will develop with good skating and balance.

Public skates are your best bets if you do not feel comfortable at all just goin around on skates, but if its more the fast paced turns/stops that you have issues with you'll just have to go to an open hockey or stick time to learn.

As for getting worried and embarrassed about falling etc....EVERYONE has done it at some point(especially as beginners) and you'll even see people still do it even with years under their belt, with ice it is only natural that every once in awhile you might lose your footing.

Just get back out there and work at it, the sooner you push through the beginner stuff the sooner you can work on your shot and all the fun stuff.

Thresh 04-25-2011 07:54 AM

You too much of a team-minded player mate, which is not a bad thing, but it's affecting your own growth.

Don't worry about how poorly you're playing as long as you're doing your best and skating your hardest on every shift and putting in the time during training. If you love the sport that much, just go for it. Don't care what other people think, though i can tell you it won't be anything bad as they will recognize that you're a beginner. You can't improve if you're not out on the ice!

I'm 23 and started roller in october, then ice at the end of march and played my first tournament last week. I was easily the worst player on my team and the thing that bugged me the most was that i missed a few one-timer opportunities coming from good passes from the wing. Each time i either fanned the puck or didn't get enough on it to send it towards the net. The worst one was when i got a breakaway opportunity and we were at a tie and i skated so hard that i fell across the blue line.

But these are the things that happen and you learn from your mistakes. Now i'll practice one-timers and turning a quick pass into a shot on target and i'll learn not to need to skate as hard as i did when getting into the offensive zone. It's all part of the learning process and, to be honest, all part of the fun.

Just keep your chin up and keep at it!

Jarick 04-25-2011 09:48 AM

Can you play in a lower level league?

beth 04-25-2011 10:48 AM

There's only one way to become better, and that's to get out there and skate. Don't set unrealistic expectations for yourself - 1 year of hockey is nowhere near long enough to get comfortable out there. Find some people to play with who are at the same level you are, and just have fun. You're still really young, you've got a lot of time to work on hockey.

While you're waiting for next season to start, get to the rink and SKATE. At least twice a week. Look up edge drills to do and practice them. Or get a coach to give you few private lessons and tell you what to work on. But just keep skating and you'll see yourself improve little by little. Don't expect it to happen overnight, though.

Come join us in the Noob thread if you want the stories. :)

ponder 04-25-2011 10:59 AM

You won't improve much in games, the best way to actually work on skills is to regularly go to public skate and stick and puck sessions at local rinks. Go to a couple such sessions a week for a year and I'm sure you'll get to a level where you'll be happy with your level of play. Also, I'm sure there have got to be beginner adult leagues in Vancouver where others are in the same boat as you?

tawheed 04-25-2011 02:19 PM

I only started playing a few years ago myself.. I just recently had what I would consider a good offensive season..

Like everyone is saying, get out on your skates as much as you can. Work on skills outside of the game. I find pick up shinny a good place to do that as you typically have more time with the puck. Add in some good understanding of positioning and while you may not score a bunch to begin with start appreciating the defensive side of the game.. When I first started my goal changed from trying to score goals to playing well defensively and positionally. If I couldn't put goals in the net I'd do what I could to make sure they didn't go in ours - including blocking shots etc..

ShawnTHW 04-25-2011 03:28 PM

Couldn't be worse than me my first time playing. I am also 21. I started playing on my 17th birthday. Got out on the rink, started to skate, couldn't turn, ran straight into the boards and fell down. But i never stopped wanting to learn. I would skate 4-5 times a week and now I am proficient at skating, stickhandling, and shooting. I mean I still suck compared to who I play against, but I am a solid country mile better than when I was when I first started to play.

Best advice is: Don't stop doing something because of what others might think. **** all the players you play with. Just be concerned about yourself and getting better. Hit the ice as much as you can. Public skate is your best option. Once you get that down, start going to stick time sessions to work on skating and stickhandling at the same time. Once you get those two things down, work on passing and shooting (standing still and while skating). The more you do it, the more natural it will become.

I wish you the best of luck.

Badger36 04-25-2011 04:20 PM


Originally Posted by CanuckGame39 (Post 32646534)
areas of my game that need DRASTIC improvement


Take skating lessons and go to public skate as much as you can and work on your skating.
You will learn in a month of skating lessons what will take you years to figure out on your own. Back in January I could barely skate and then my girlfriend bought me skating lessons for Christmas. It was just your basic adult learn to skate lessons where they teach you the basics (foreard stride, 2-foot foreward c-cuts, snowplow stop, hockey stop, 1-foot c-cuts while going around the faceoff circle, backwards 2-foot c-cuts, gliding while balancing on 1 foot and going, statonary spins, transitioning from foreward to backwards while gliding and around the faceoff circle while gliding on 1 foot). In 8 weeks I learned how to do all of those things and now youd swear that Ive been skating for my entire life, even though Ive only been skating for about a year.
You need to get over being embarassed of falling. Everyone falls and especially when you are learning if you arent falling or almost falling then you arent pushing your limits and arent getting better. At public skate there will be lots of little kids and adults who are learning how to skate who will be falling all the time, so no need to be embarassed.

-Shooting the puck (i can shoot a plastic street puck amazingly and im not sure why i have a hard time getting the puck off the ice i think this is because of my skating and balance etc...)
Again, lessons. Look around where you live for hockey classes. They will teach you EVERYTHING that you will need to know about skating and shooting for hockey.

Swept In Seven 04-25-2011 04:38 PM

Skate as often as possible, at stick and puck or just public skating.

Fenza 04-25-2011 04:47 PM

Let you worry about you, don't think about letting your teammates down while you're on the ice. You don't want to get inside your own head.

Rocko604 04-25-2011 04:48 PM

Skating as much as you can is the best thing you can do. Go to stick and puck sessions, work on your puck handling, shooting etc.

Also, a friend of mine new to hockey took this program and loved it: http://insideedgehockey.com/spring/a...-play-program/ Unfortunately, you'll have to wait until Fall to register. Burnaby 8-Rinks also offers adult hockey classes as well.

Glen440 04-25-2011 06:36 PM

I can only repeat what has been said. It takes alot of practice and alot of wipeouts to get better. I'm 33 and been skating since oct 2010. I play once a week with guys from work so they range from D-B level with a couple E's like myself.

I took 11 skating lessons in the winter and that really helped alot.

My first few times out I ran into the boards and other people. I fit right in now. I had 3 goals in the first 26 games, I have 5 in the last 2 including my first hat trick. I'm lucky to play with people who give me a chance.

I had a really hard time with receiving passes and one timers. I now use a 2 piece stick with a wood blade which helps alot. I have tried a few different curves and decided the sakic curve makes it easy to get the puck up in a hurry in close.

I'm thinking about joining a league for the winter and see how I do with other E level adults.

Good luck

ATLhockey437 04-25-2011 10:16 PM

For stickhandling, this tip will help you tremendously with your vision and being able to keep your head up and making the play at the same time.

It helps to have white stick tape for beginners also:

When your looking ahead, instead of staring straight down at the puck, keep your vision up BUT your farsightedness focused on the yellow outiline on the bottom of the boards. If done properly, the blade and puck should still be in view but it will be minimal. The contrast of white tape on black puck will make it easier to view where the puck is on your blade.

This is one of the best pieces of advice I've ever been told from a coach.

As for shooting, tape 2 pucks around the bottom of your stick (neck of the blade) and practice stick handling and shooting.

Dangling between a triangle of pucks helps also.

Watch sean skinner videos on youtube.

nullterm 04-25-2011 10:37 PM

Power Skating Level 1 at 8 Rinks in Burnaby

I started there and haven't looked back.

Useful Idiot 04-26-2011 12:03 AM

Just echoing everyone elses suggestions so far. I was in a similar situation so I can relate.

I learned how to skate (not well) as a kid, and then went ten years without skating before deciding to play hockey at the age of 16. The house league director for midget suggested I move down to bantam for at least half a season while I improve so I didn't get hurt playing with people my size or bigger. At that point I could barely stop, skated with my head down, and couldn't even spin around to skate backwards. I swallowed my pride and spent the whole year playing with kids two to three years younger than me. I took power skating lessons once a week during this time too, and because I was late to sign up for that, I was stuck skating with children less than half my age. Between that, and my coach working with me during practices, my skating improved through the season. By the end of the season I moderately useful (being bigger than everyone else helped too). :laugh:

Next season I bought new and proper fitting skates which helped a lot, and moved back into my age group. I was still bad compared to everyone but I could at least keep up with the play. I took advantage of practice time and improved my skating through the year again. It wasn't until playing intramurals for a few years in university that I improved in other areas, and a lot of it was because I became confident in my skating. I think playing in a league without hitting, and players just wanting to have fun also helped during those years.

So just keep with it and focus on your skating and having fun. If being competetive and not a on-ice liability matters to you, be on the ball with your positioning. Being in position and reading the play helped cover up some of my skating problems in the first two years of playing. Take power skating if you can and take advantage of any practice time. Your teammates and coaches should be willing to help you out too. Once you get your skating down, other things will begin to follow, but it still takes practice.

And play pond hockey in the winter if you can. It's a fun way to work on puckhandling and any ice time is good ice time. I'm living back at home and spent the winter playing pond hockey once or twice a week with friends. We were lucky enough to have a big pond and net to ourselves during afternoons so while most of my friends learned how to skate, I spent time working on puckhandling and shooting. I think I'd now be good enough that if I were to play one more year of intramurals, I could be a regular contributor.

Good luck with everything!

SouthpawTRK 04-26-2011 01:58 AM

Since you have loved hockey since you were young, you just got to get back out there and keep trying. Don't find yourself ten or twenty years down the road with regrets of not getting back out there due to embarrassment.

You are still a very young person and have a lot of years to get better and a lot of years to play hockey. I didn't start playing until my early forties; wish I would have started sooner in life; but I'm loving every minute of it.

You may feel like you are the worst player on the ice and/or team, but believe me you are probably not the worst. The only way you could be the worst is if you are playing in a league that is well above your current skill level. You may want to start out at the lowest level league possible and then work your way up over time.

I would concentrate on skating; whether it's at public skate, stick/puck and even skating classes. Even in a beer league you won't be touching the puck for more than a handful of minutes; whereas you could be skating up to twenty minutes in the actual game. If you can skate forwards, backwards, transition from forward to backwards (and vice versa), and do crossovers; then you are as good off as many entry level beer league players.

Shooting and puck handling can come over time; whether you are practicing on dry land or on the ice. If you have access to stick/puck sessions at your local rink; that's probably the best way to get better. Learning how to skate with the puck with your head up is pretty important (as well as safe). A wrist shot and snap shot will be far more useful and dangerous (to the opposing goalie) than say a hard slap shot.

The main thing to be mindful of is to have fun and keep an open mind to those that are going to try to help you out. If you focus on getting better by going to public skates, taking lessons, and stick/puck sessions; you'll be better before you know it.

Geico4yoMoney 04-26-2011 12:13 PM

I would probably wait on the league and go to some clinics or camps if you can. I know what you mean, my first year (granted I was maybe.... 10 years old) I sucked! I scored 1 goal and it was a lucky tap in garbage goal in the last game before play offs. I didnt care though everyone was amazed I scored haha. I went to a local hockey camp run by some NHL players and coaches, it was one week long. The following season, my 2nd one, I was one of the top goal scorers on the team. Yeah it was house, but my game went from zero to being top notch, and within 4 seasons I was ranked #1 by the coaches during evaluations and won league MVP and eventaully moved into travel hockey.

The point is that learning from top talent will benefit you, and it is worth the money.

The otherside of the equation is just conditioning. It seems like the biggest difference (not only) between professional players and us average joes is that they are in elite athletic shape and because of this can excel in pretty much any sport they play.

Skraut 04-26-2011 12:28 PM

You've been walking/running for 20 years, and skating for 1. Have patience skating is a tough skill that doesn't happen overnight. This was probably one of the toughest things for me to get past when I first started skating at age 33. It's the mental knowledge of knowing your limitations and going after them to try and get better.

pass the bisk 04-27-2011 03:19 AM

Skating is king. If you are a good skater, people won't care about anything else. Don't worry about anything but that, IMO

Frankie Spankie 04-27-2011 04:17 AM

Stick and puck time will always help! I've been playing for ~5 years now and in the winter got my first ever stick and puck time. I got 2-3 hours a week for about 3-4 months and I still improved leaps and bounds which I wasn't expecting considering the fact that I've already been playing for years.

You say you're 21, are you in college? I got my stick and puck time at my college who has 2 hours of free stick and puck time to anybody with a student ID, I took good advantage of this and got a lot better for it.

If you go for stick and puck time, nobody (should) say anything to you no matter how bad you are because they know you're there to learn/practice. Some might try to give you pointers. Try for stick and puck time and try to find beginner leagues too. I bet there are plenty of beginner leagues up in Canada suited just for you. Just keep playing and you'll do fine!

OkimLom 04-27-2011 01:30 PM

Get better at skating. If you can skate the puck will follow you. You don't need to have the best shot to Have a good time. You make a mistake laugh about it. And talk with other guys. Ask them their advice about certain things. If you're a blast be around I guarantee guys will ask you to play more, which will lead to more "training" .

OkimLom 04-27-2011 01:31 PM

I have found Hockey players are the most helpful athletes in any sport.

noobman 04-30-2011 11:31 AM

I think it's actually easier to start hockey late as an adult than it is as a teen.

As a teenager there aren't really any beginners leagues you can go to. You can jump into house league, but even then you're playing with guys who have a lot more experience than you do... and teenagers don't tend to have the patience with newbies that adults do.

The best thing you can do is join a beginner's league and/or hockey school for now. Playing in a lower level league will allow you to have fun and put up some points, building your confidence. As your skating and confidence levels improve, you'll find that improvements are falling into place naturally.

As far as what to improve on, really focus on learning how to skate and the theory behind it (edge control, weight distribution, proper stance and alignment, etc etc) and try to practice as much as you can. See if your local library has a copy of Laura Stamm's Powerskating. That book teaches some skating theory and has lots of drills and exercises for practicing and improving.

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