Thread: Coaches: Mini Mites
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11-03-2013, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
The association should have a bank of drills and teaching aids that are age appropriate. Use these after talking to coaches at the next level to get feedback about effectiveness.
Should and do are two different things. You are in Quebec and things are done much differently in the states in most associations/rinks. Quite often, there is very little continuity between years and levels. In the youth association there may or may not be a "big picture", but from my experience, there isn't. The plans I was referring to come from USAH, which has begun to fill in these types of gaps in the US youth programs.

Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
Quebec has a MAHG program for the 4-6 year olds, half rink. Assuming mini mite is the 4 year olds, perhaps with advanced 3 year olds. Learn to Skate program should be a pre-requisite but easy to work around.
That was a point I was alluding to earlier, about the learn to skate. In the US, mini-mites is 4-7, sometimes 8 if a real beginner. That being said, we have 7 and 8 year olds in Mite who have little if any skating experience prior to Mites. In my view, a learn to skate for a half a year, maybe a year should be requisite before getting into a more structured hockey program. At the Mite level, and above, there are isn't enough time to focus on skating fundamentals and those who are starting behind are left behind. They'll ultimately drop out of the sport, I suspect, because they can't keep up skating wise. At the same time, the competent to good skaters "tune out" while waiting for those who can barely stand up to get from one end of the rink to the other.

Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
First and foremost make it fun for the youngsters. Keep them active and moving. If running drills with stations watch the youngsters in line. If a few start looking around they are getting bored. Not a good sign.

Let the youngster play hockey for about 1/3-1/2 of the practice. Experiment with positions, everyone plays goalie, forward, dmen during the season.

Evaluations, necessary evil. Run them from weakest to strongest otherwise the weaker youngsters tune out and go thru the motions.

Most important, everyone should have fun.
I agree, at the mini mite level, avoid standing around at all cost. Then it ends up like a baseball practice where they look around and kick dirt or each other. If you (the OP) have a bunch of parents pitching in, then a small stations approach should work great.

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