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Ball Hockey Tips/Help

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Old
09-03-2008, 08:22 PM
  #1
eraserhead
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Ball Hockey Tips/Help

Alright. I've been a hockey fan since 12 years old. However, I've never played before, and though I love ball hockey, none of my friends do so I never get to play. I'm joining a ball hockey league Friday, and we play twice a week.Just pickup games.

Well, since I've never played, I'm not very skilled. What I'd like are some pointers on what to do and what not to do for forward positions and defense positions. Which would be best for someone with little skill?

I'm really competitive and work my ass off. I'm thinking right winger who crowds the net and just generally looks for garbage goals, or a defensive d-man who stays back a bit and takes away passing lanes.

Any tips at all - attire, shooting, strategy - for ball hockey will be greatly appreciated.


Thanks

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09-03-2008, 08:56 PM
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nullterm
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Work on your cardio. Running up & down is a heck of alot more work than skating.

Drill alot of lateral movement, like dekes and toe drags. Because you're in shoes, not skates, it's alot easier to change direction. Stickwork in general is very important.

Good shoes. I've had shinsplints in the past from other sports, so I know how much it can suck if you don't have decent footwear to cushion your feet.

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09-03-2008, 11:03 PM
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noobman
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Ball hockey requires an insane amount of running.

For attire, I definitely recommend a jock and some volleyball knee pads. You'll sweat a lot, and you'll probably get very hot since the ambient temperature is going to be higher (lack of ice) so you should definitely invest in some Underarmour, or other breathable clothing to wear under your jersey. Soccer-style shin guards are also quite helpful. One thing I had a hard time adjusting to was the weight of the ball. The league I played in uses a featherweight ball, so it's really easy to lose track of it while stickhandling. The ball is also quite prone to flying high.

If you're not used to lots of sprinting (perhaps you're more comfortable as a steady-state runner) you'd probably enjoy playing D.


Oh, offsides in ball hockey (or at least the two leagues I've played in) are a little different. For the ball to be considered "out" of the offensive zone, it has to cross the red line at centre, and not the blueline. To clear the zone (return onside to advance the ball) your players only have to come back to the blueline. If you've got pressure and your opponents dump the ball past the blueline but they don't cross the red line, your team is still onside. If that ball does cross the red line though, your teammates have to come back to the blueline to go onside.

This gave me quite a bit of trouble in my first two games.

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Old
09-03-2008, 11:22 PM
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JiriHrdina
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I don't know if you do this or not, but I find a lot of guys that pride themselves on "hustling" chase the ball all over the floor, with no regard to their position.

The hustle is great but you should learn where you are expected to be - by all means back check and if an opportunity presents itself take advantage of it - but good teams are able to let the ball do a lot of the work because they know where each other are going to be. If you are running all over the place you'll just get in the way.

In terms of crowding the net - I find in ball hockey sometimes being right on top of the net all the time isn't good. The rebounds typically come out a little further - so you want to be out a little higher. Except of course if you are simply trying to screen the goalie than by all means get your arse right in there. But I found I started potting a lot more goals by going to the net, drawin the dman with me, but then taking a few steps back to find a soft spot - you're open for both a quick pass or rebounds. More options than being the guy that's strictly being a garbage man in the crease.

Each league is different though - I've played a lot of high level of ball hockey, and also some real relaxed stuff - and what one does in each is totally different. In some ways I find playing with beginners tougher because they dont' hvae any clue what they are doing, and thus do opposite of what you are expecting.

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09-04-2008, 01:34 AM
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nullterm
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Get a pair of hockey gloves. Or atleast wear some kind of gloves to protect your hands. Sticks will be sliding up yours and smacking you on the knuckles pretty frequently.

Get a stick and ball, just start dribbling the ball back and forth to develop a feel for handling it. Find a concrete/hard wall and practice shooting the ball off the wall, you can practice receiving passes at the same time to work on your reflexes.

Find a game of road hockey and join in. Ultimately, the best way to learn is by doing.

Even though you have an idea of positions you'd like to play, try every position out. Even if you don't like it, atleast you'll develop more depth in other areas and have a more complete understanding of the game.

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09-04-2008, 05:49 PM
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noobman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JiriHrdina View Post
I don't know if you do this or not, but I find a lot of guys that pride themselves on "hustling" chase the ball all over the floor, with no regard to their position.

The hustle is great but you should learn where you are expected to be - by all means back check and if an opportunity presents itself take advantage of it - but good teams are able to let the ball do a lot of the work because they know where each other are going to be. If you are running all over the place you'll just get in the way.

In terms of crowding the net - I find in ball hockey sometimes being right on top of the net all the time isn't good. The rebounds typically come out a little further - so you want to be out a little higher. Except of course if you are simply trying to screen the goalie than by all means get your arse right in there. But I found I started potting a lot more goals by going to the net, drawin the dman with me, but then taking a few steps back to find a soft spot - you're open for both a quick pass or rebounds. More options than being the guy that's strictly being a garbage man in the crease.

Each league is different though - I've played a lot of high level of ball hockey, and also some real relaxed stuff - and what one does in each is totally different. In some ways I find playing with beginners tougher because they dont' hvae any clue what they are doing, and thus do opposite of what you are expecting.
I find that guys scramble a lot more in the lower-tier leagues.

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09-04-2008, 08:10 PM
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RandV
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What kind of stick are you allowed or are planning on using? If you're going in with a wood stick try and find one with a strip of plastic along the bottom. A wooden blade will pick up a lot of wear and tear, especially on the bottom which makes it rougher to stick handle and shoot. A plastic strip alleviates this problem and gives you a solid & cheap stick.

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Old
09-04-2008, 11:37 PM
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JiriHrdina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noobman View Post
I find that guys scramble a lot more in the lower-tier leagues.
No question - and the lower leagues are more dangerous. Guys don't know what they are doing and put themselves in position to get hurt, or hurt others.

In fact I've been out for 2 years from playing in a low tier game - two surgeries and still nowhere near being able to play again.

All because I was subbing as a favor on a team in a lower league - and some idiot who was new to the sport did something incredibly dumb - and in my efforts not to hurt him by basicaly stepping on his head, after he took me out at the knee...hurt myself much worse.

If I play again - I'm sticking to leagues that are advanced enough that the guys know what they are doing.

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09-04-2008, 11:42 PM
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iPunch
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Soccer Shin pads

Good luck out there, our ball hockey season just ended

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Old
09-05-2008, 05:32 PM
  #10
noobman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JiriHrdina View Post
No question - and the lower leagues are more dangerous. Guys don't know what they are doing and put themselves in position to get hurt, or hurt others.

In fact I've been out for 2 years from playing in a low tier game - two surgeries and still nowhere near being able to play again.

All because I was subbing as a favor on a team in a lower league - and some idiot who was new to the sport did something incredibly dumb - and in my efforts not to hurt him by basicaly stepping on his head, after he took me out at the knee...hurt myself much worse.

If I play again - I'm sticking to leagues that are advanced enough that the guys know what they are doing.
I've also had my fair share of injuries from newbs. I'm not skilled enough to play anything higher than D level ball hockey... though I'm generally one of the better guys there. You get some guys that can't even control their sticks, and that's pretty scary. Idiots that don't watch the knees are pretty bad as well.

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Old
09-07-2008, 06:37 PM
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Thanks a lot for the tips, guys. I'll let you know how it goes ( won't be joining until next week when classes get settled, etc...)

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09-07-2008, 06:55 PM
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Not trying to hijack your thread or steal your thunder eraserhead, but I share some similarities with your current situation. I used to play Dek (Ball and Inline) hockey when younger and this past May I finally found a group of people interested in starting pick-ups, so I reconvened with the sport. I'm of moderate skill level and moderate experience, but wanted some ideas on how to take my game to the next level? E.g. drills, pointers etc.?

Figured this was a good place to inquire. Again, sorry if it feels like I'm stealing your thunder eraser.

Thanks...

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Old
09-07-2008, 07:00 PM
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ball hockey sounds intresting since im still learning to skate...... its sad but i cant find any ball hockey info in oklahoma

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03-15-2013, 03:09 PM
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oilfan09
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Bumping this thread back as there were some great tips! I am still curious as to what kind of drills should I run to get better at Ball hockey. Should I be pinching alot and carrying the ball up if I am defense? Should I use the wall more often or look for the long stretch pass?

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03-15-2013, 06:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilfan09 View Post
Bumping this thread back as there were some great tips! I am still curious as to what kind of drills should I run to get better at Ball hockey. Should I be pinching alot and carrying the ball up if I am defense? Should I use the wall more often or look for the long stretch pass?
Just to get the conversation going, there is a reason at the NHL level you rarely see the long stretch pass, but see players use the wall on almost every play.

Stretch passes are risky. Off the wall and out of the zone (hopefully to a sprinting forward) is way less so - it is very hard to stop a ball above your head!

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Old
03-15-2013, 06:29 PM
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SoundwaveIsCharisma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nullterm View Post
Get a pair of hockey gloves. Or atleast wear some kind of gloves to protect your hands. Sticks will be sliding up yours and smacking you on the knuckles pretty frequently.

Get a stick and ball, just start dribbling the ball back and forth to develop a feel for handling it. Find a concrete/hard wall and practice shooting the ball off the wall, you can practice receiving passes at the same time to work on your reflexes.

Find a game of road hockey and join in. Ultimately, the best way to learn is by doing.

Even though you have an idea of positions you'd like to play, try every position out. Even if you don't like it, atleast you'll develop more depth in other areas and have a more complete understanding of the game.
Lacrosse gloves are amazing for ball hockey.

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Old
03-15-2013, 06:37 PM
  #17
Travis093
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If anyone lives near Saskatoon, Sk. There's a ball hockey league. Registration ends on the 25th. It's a 20 game season and it's around 250$.

I find as you continue to play the game, realize your mistakes, you end up a better player.
I've improved my shot, passing, offensive awareness, defensive awareness, and my vision, quite a lot. I've recently started practicing my slapshot, and realized I have a decent one timer.
Anyone have tips for winning faceoffs?

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