12 and under to play no check?
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07-02-2011, 01:28 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Originally Posted by
That is my point. Having the kids wait even longer to start hitting is way more dangerous than having 10 year olds hit. 10 year olds won't do near the amount of damage (when the kids are mostly the same size) as kids will when they get older, bigger and faster. Some kids will take to hitting right away and become very good at it and some will take more time. I would rather have a kid learn how to take a hit when the kid hitting him is the same size. Kids begin really gaining skills between 10 and 14 years of age. By playing no check during those years the kids learn to play in what eventually will be dangerous situations without any fear of being hit or hurt. I even know of coaches who teach kids to face the boards and protect the puck knowing that if the kid gets hit he will get an extended power play.
You can make a medical study turnout with whatever results you are after so I put zero stock in any study that says concussions will decrease by not allowing hitting for 2 more years. I would rather make my judgement through 40+ years of experience playing, coaching, officiating and reporting on the sport. I don't pretend to be a doctor but I can count on less than one hand the amount of concussions I have seen with kids under 10 back when there was no checking age restrictions. I see by far the most with kids between the ages of 12-16 and most of those by kids with little experience getting hit. It isn't so much the hitter being more in the wrong but more often than not the hitee putting himself in a bad position through inexperience. And at that age the kids are big enough and fast enough to do real damage.
I would much rather see time and effort put into teaching coaches how to actually teach the kids to be able to protect themselves and have kids deliver hits correctly and respectfully. I see far too many youth coaches whose coaching knowledge ends at being able to open and close the gates to the bench. Lets fix that problem instead of just throwing darts in the dark at a problem and hoping it works.
once again i agree here. and i have dealt with USA hockey for years before i even had children of my own to coach. as an organization they leave much to be desired.
and when i taught 6 yr olds how to skate towards the boards and still protect themselves, i had parents complaining it was a waste of ice time.
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