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04-11-2012, 11:28 AM
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qmechanic
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Coaching beginning adult rec players

Hey guys and gals, I'm an assistant coach for a hockey club of beginning adult rec players and we're having trouble getting some of the players to progress. Everyone is relatively young (in their 20s) with a mix of men and women and a wide range of skill level. Most of them never played hockey before joining our group. The club has 1.5 hour practices once a week; the schedule is usually something like 10 min warmup, 60 min drills, 20 min scrimmage. We usually try to separate the lower skilled players from the higher skilled ones for at least part of the practice.

The people who have athletic talent and/or experience pick things up pretty quickly, but for those who don't, a lot of them get stuck. Their skating is still very elementary and it hinders their development in other areas. I realize there's only so much we can do since most people only skate once a week (at best) and some of them probably aren't as motivated as they could be.

Still, is there anything we can do to help them improve more quickly? Many people don't bend their knees enough. Is there some drill we could do to get them to bend their knees? I wish I could get them to cut their sticks shorter, but that's probably unrealistic for adults.

Also, does anyone have suggestions on what kind of drills and what mix of drills to do? Ideally, I think they should work on their skating first, but most adults would be unhappy and bored doing skating drills for an hour. We only have 2 coaches (1 if I'm not there), so it would be hard to do small group instruction.

Sorry about the long post. Coaching is a complicated topic. I appreciate any thoughts you have.

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