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Has anyone ever used a stick handling ball?

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Old
06-26-2010, 11:19 PM
  #1
SpringfieldSkins
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Has anyone ever used a stick handling ball?

I'm thinking about getting one. I don't have any place to really practice my shooting off ice, but I'd at least like to work on my stick handling.

Something like this: http://www.hockeymonkey.com/smart-hockey-ball.html


I'm an above average skater in my first season of playing hockey but my stick handling skills and shooting are below average. I'd like to work on my stick handling off ice every day so that I can at least move the puck and get much better chances.

Any reviews on these? I've seen the Green Biscuit (or whatever it's called) but I'll likely be practicing my stick handling in a carpeted area.

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06-26-2010, 11:55 PM
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hoonking
 
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I like my golf ball

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06-27-2010, 02:08 AM
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Thepandamancan
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These things are great. I bought something similar from hockey giant. It's just a wooden ball and I realized after the fact I could have just used a golf ball or any small weighted ball to mimic the weight of a puck.

I practice everyday for a few minutes while I watch TV, etc. My stickhandling has come a long way since I started playing a few months ago.

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06-27-2010, 04:05 AM
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Eaglepride*
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For only 11 $ its a can't miss. I use them a lot and they're quickly helping me develop quicker hands. My wristshot improved a lot by it though its still not as good as I want it to be.

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06-27-2010, 08:17 AM
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vivianmb
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my son uses one all the time and is BY FAR the best stickhandler at his age . he's won that portion of "skills competition " at every tournament he goes to. he's 9.

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Old
06-27-2010, 08:19 AM
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nystromshairstylist
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Get a swedish wooden ball, it closely resembles a puck's movements and feel. Spend 15 minutes with it each day moving it around your house/apt furniture, chairs, etc., without looking down.

Soon you'll be able to dangle the noobs - like I did last night for the first time...woooo hooo, 3 months in and I might no longer be America's worst hockey player. ... taking suggestions for a new avatar...

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06-27-2010, 12:02 PM
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SpringfieldSkins
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Sounds like a worthy investment then. Thanks for the advice guys.

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06-27-2010, 12:36 PM
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I have a wooden stickhandling ball. It's good for training your body how to move your arms/wrists/hands, but you still need a puck and ice to learn the motions of a puck.

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Old
06-27-2010, 02:27 PM
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If you haven't ordered it yet, try here-

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?p...71&filter=ball

The 2" diameter is the same as the Sweedish balls, but lots cheaper. Any woodworking supply place should have them also.

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06-27-2010, 03:22 PM
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AIREAYE
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the only downside to this is that its not as high or as wide as a puck, if you practise with this and only this too much, you're stick will end up ON the puck when stickhandling and not beside it

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06-27-2010, 05:05 PM
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Hrad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
the only downside to this is that its not as high or as wide as a puck, if you practise with this and only this too much, you're stick will end up ON the puck when stickhandling and not beside it
+1

As someone who used to use these a lot this definitely becomes a problem. If you can (And I think it's worth it) you should get a skill pad (you can make one yourself) and a green biscuit. It's not exactly like a puck, but it's the next best thing and it's not even close.

Stickhandling was the thing that was really missing from my game, I could skate well, shoot great, making those small moves with the puck really made me worse than I could have been. The smart balls will change your hands from "Stone" to "Not so great", but after using the green biscuit I've gone from "not so great" to "actually pretty good" on the ice.

All in all, go for the green biscuit and don't look back!

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06-27-2010, 06:35 PM
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noobman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vivianmb View Post
my son uses one all the time and is BY FAR the best stickhandler at his age . he's won that portion of "skills competition " at every tournament he goes to. he's 9.
Well you have to ask yourself if that's' because he's using a stickhandling ball, or if it's because he's just practicing his stickhandling more than the other kids.

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06-27-2010, 07:43 PM
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vivianmb
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Originally Posted by noobman View Post
Well you have to ask yourself if that's' because he's using a stickhandling ball, or if it's because he's just practicing his stickhandling more than the other kids.
its probably the ball. but yeah he does practice constantly.

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06-27-2010, 10:05 PM
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LarryO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
the only downside to this is that its not as high or as wide as a puck, if you practise with this and only this too much, you're stick will end up ON the puck when stickhandling and not beside it
+2
I tried warming up with a smarthockey ball once before a game and I was totally screwed up in the way you mentioned when I got on the ice and handled the puck. If you want to practice with a ball off-ice, I think it's better to use a bigger ball than a smarthockey or golf ball.

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06-28-2010, 09:13 AM
  #15
Jarick
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The Smart Hockey ball made me a MUCH better stickhandler. Definitely worth the $10. Works great on any smooth surface. Focus on soft/quiet touches and quick, accurate hands. USA Hockey has a bunch of stickhandling videos that have great drills and exercises.

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06-28-2010, 09:54 AM
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wearethegreek
 
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I thought the design of the smarthockey ball was so that it would make contact on your stick the same "height" off the ground as a puck?

Like exactly 1.25 inches up the blade vertically or whatever

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06-28-2010, 01:48 PM
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Lososaurus
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I'd recommend the smart hockey ball( or training with a ball ) for repetition and muscle memory. I've used a shotpad and flypucks as well and they can simulate ice fairly well and offer heavier weighted pucks for practice, but they only work together. A training ball can be used damn near anywhere. Both help greatly. If you want to add another dynamic, make yourself a weighted stick( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwz43l6WrzM ) and you'll notice an every greater difference in strength.

Anything you do off-ice will never be 100% accurate, but can get close enough for the repetition to be there. Fine tune everything when you get on the ice.

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06-28-2010, 03:01 PM
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Jarick
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No it's the same weight as the hockey puck...the height throws people off, but if you aren't stickhandling with the blade twisted way open (i.e. if you're stickhandling like you should be) you're fine.

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06-28-2010, 03:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoonking View Post
I like my golf ball
That's all I use, Golf ball and no tape on the blade.

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06-28-2010, 03:54 PM
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HowToHockey
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To clear a few things up

Here is the low down on stickhandling balls.

Size - Stickhandling balls are thinner than a puck, and taller than a puck. The contact point is made to be the same height as the top of a puck.

Here is a picture of a stickhandling ball compared to a green biscuit which is the same size as a puck

Weight - Stickhandling balls are lighter than a puck because a puck is used on the ice, while a ball is used off the ice. When using a ball it feels heavier, so they make them lighter to feel more like the weight of a puck on the ice.

I like the stickhandling balls, wooden and smart hockey. My favourite off ice training tool is the Green Biscuit. If you want more info I talk about the Green Biscuit and stickhandling balls and how they compare to a puck in this review of the green biscuit

You can see a bunch of stickhandling stuff here

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Old
06-28-2010, 10:34 PM
  #21
wearethegreek
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beavboyz View Post
To clear a few things up

Here is the low down on stickhandling balls.

Size - Stickhandling balls are thinner than a puck, and taller than a puck. The contact point is made to be the same height as the top of a puck.

Here is a picture of a stickhandling ball compared to a green biscuit which is the same size as a puck

Weight - Stickhandling balls are lighter than a puck because a puck is used on the ice, while a ball is used off the ice. When using a ball it feels heavier, so they make them lighter to feel more like the weight of a puck on the ice.

I like the stickhandling balls, wooden and smart hockey. My favourite off ice training tool is the Green Biscuit. If you want more info I talk about the Green Biscuit and stickhandling balls and how they compare to a puck in this review of the green biscuit

You can see a bunch of stickhandling stuff here
Thanks contact point is what I meant. The roundest part of the ball reaches out at max diameter to contact the stick at the same relative height as the puck.

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Old
06-28-2010, 10:55 PM
  #22
Giroux tha Damaja
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I had a guy shoot one of those things at me in a warm-up before. Slap shot right to the bicep. Hurt so god damn bad, I wanted to kill him.

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Old
06-29-2010, 11:03 PM
  #23
TheUndertow40Six2
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The Smarthockey balls are a great tool for basic stick work, but I prefer the Green Biscuit. This is simply because it behaves more like an actual puck out on the ice. Inversely, the GB is not durable. We usually go through one a month at the shop where I work. Admittedly, we use the GB much more than the average person, but it will become noticably thinner over time and is prone to cracking and chipping if you pass it back and forth.
My two cents: If you can control a golf ball at speed, you can control anything.

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Old
06-30-2010, 11:24 AM
  #24
Jarick
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My big problem with the golf ball is that you barely have to tap it to get it to go really far. So if you stickhandle it back and forth quickly then go on ice with a puck, the puck won't be going anywhere.

Really, it's fun to use the Smart Hockey ball, the wooden ball, and the golf ball to soften up the hands. They each do something different. I don't have a large smooth surface so I can't use the green biscuit.

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