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11-28-2012, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by cagney View Post
It's certainly interesting to hear a first hand account like yours. Do you have an opinion on USA Hockey's American Development Model? It seems that USA Hockey has seen the issues you're talking about and is working to correct them.
I think it is a step in the right direction for a lot of programs. I coach older players now so not too familiar with it besides what I read. Most good quality programs were driving cross ice and better utilization of ice for a long time so it probably didn't effect most of high quality programs a lot. I know of programs that implemented cross ice games and got rid of full ice hockey for mites quite a few years before ADM was implemented. USA Hockey pretty much looked at top programs around the world and implemented what they felt were the bright ideas from those programs. ADM is to get all of the laggards on the same page.
Good coaches know that a young hockey player needs to be in situations where the skills are amplified and multiplied. I know parents complain and want to see full ice hockey games for 7 year olds but if they only took the time to study those games and compare to cross ice games, they would see how many more things happen during a cross ice game. During a full ice mite game, the time it takes a kid to push the puck ahead from the defensive face off circle down to the other end of the ice, a cross ice game could have had, during that same time frame 2 shots on net,1 attempted pass, 3 dekes, 1 rebound control, 1 loose puck, 3 defensive decisions and a puck battle. (rather than one kid pushing a puck forward and everyone else trying to catch)
I think the important thing is to keep teaching the parents. Most parents would say that they want their kid to become the best player they can become and those parents need to know what the commitment level is to reach the higher levels of hockey. The amount of shots a player will take during even the best ran practice is not even close to adequate. Top players are taking hundreds of shots a day on their own to get to the elite level and I know some kids who are getting over 500 or more shots a day. And this is just one of the skills. The other skills are worked on just as religiously and consistently by the top players on their own. (Just one example is Galchenyuk. The ice time he practiced weekly on his own when he was with the Chicago Young Americans, was more ice than he got with his U16 team at CYA. That trend continued in Sarnia and Iím sure the trend was same before he came to CYA.) These are stories that parents need to know

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