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08-03-2010, 03:27 PM
  #1
Matt4776
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Help a hockey beginner

I am looking to start playing hockey, and I am going to start with Roller before I get into ice. First off, what is the main difference between composite and wood sticks? How tall should they be on my body when I stand it up?

Also, I am a righty in everything I do. Does that mean I shoot righty? I always assumed that but some guy told me that would mean I shot lefty.. which makes sense because there are so many left-handed shots in the NHL. On the website I was on looking at sticks, a lot of them are only available in lefty shots.

All help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks :/

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08-03-2010, 03:33 PM
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The Spicy Shrimp
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As a beginner myself, I can tell you that you'll want to start with a wood stick. You don't want to be spending too much on a stick when you're still learning how to shoot. You don't want to be breaking a 200 dollar stick because your mechanics suck.

Everything about your stick is feel and preference though. The guideline is that it should come to your chin when you're flat-footed, but it's really more up to what you're comfortable with. Same with which side you shoot on. I'm right-handed, and I shoot righty, because it's what I'm comfortable doing. Don't worry about doing it "right" or "wrong," do what feels best for you.

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08-03-2010, 03:44 PM
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LatvianTwist
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For the curve, try and find a flat stick with no curve at all, and use that for a little while until your certain you're either a left or right shot.
Length really dpends on what your comfortable with, most sticks will come to somewhere between your chin and nose on your skates, and you nose to mid-forehead without skates.
The Spicy Shrimp is right about the wood sticks, composite usually break more easily and are alot more expensive, so start with wood until you've gained some control and know what kind of stick you want.
Also, for the most part, start with cheaper gear and don't be afraid to go to a pro shop and try on several different brands, because being comfortable in your gear is almost as important as your skill level. Don't buy your first set of gear online, also, unless you've had everything sized and you know exactly what you want, and that it will fit and you'll be comfortable. Just experiment with gear alot, and another thing is don't be afraid to ask other guys how they like their gear and where they got it, because that usually ends up being the way I learn about some great deals on equipment.

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08-03-2010, 03:45 PM
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jacko23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt4776 View Post
I am looking to start playing hockey, and I am going to start with Roller before I get into ice. First off, what is the main difference between composite and wood sticks? How tall should they be on my body when I stand it up?

Also, I am a righty in everything I do. Does that mean I shoot righty? I always assumed that but some guy told me that would mean I shot lefty.. which makes sense because there are so many left-handed shots in the NHL. On the website I was on looking at sticks, a lot of them are only available in lefty shots.

All help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks :/

196 posts on a HOCKEY website, but you never played? strange, but whatever. :-)

anyway, good choice, first off. ive been playing for about 15 years and i loved every shift ive ever played. im no expert when it comes to sticks. alot of what you will hear as far as equipment goes is "guidelines". alot of it is preference too. some people say you can "feel" the puck on a wood stick better than composite. composites tend to be lighter, but are more expensive and depending on the model, they are less durable.

as far as stick height goes, i was always told that when you stand the stick up in front of you, it should come to your mouth with your skates on. again...preference, because i prefer my stick to be a tad longer as a forward instead of "D".

the curve of your stick is all about your technique. dont alter your technique to accommodate a curve, rather, find one that works for your technique. with you being a beginner, i say find a decent wood stick or two (gotta have a backup) and see what works for you.

if you are right handed, i would say its a safe bet that you will play hockey righty as well. find a broom and pretend it is a hockey stick. try holding it on both sides of your body like you are playing hockey and see which is more comfortable. look at different models from different manufacturers. im sure righty sticks are out there. im right handed and have no trouble finding right handed sticks.

whatever you do, whichever hand ends up being your top hand, NEVER take it off the end of the stick!! i see kids beginners playing hockey and they look like ninja turtles skating around with their bow staff in their hands. haha.

i hope that helps. im sure other posters will have other inputs, but remember, thats their PREFERENCE. you need to be comfortable out there, and you need to find what works for YOU.

enjoy!

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08-03-2010, 03:54 PM
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SouthpawTRK
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Welcome to the world of hockey

When it comes to sticks the choice inevitably is going to be up to you on what you want; wood or composite. You can get wood sticks for a lot cheaper than some composites. But at the same time, you can get some really good deals on close out composite sticks. I bought some Nike-Bauer Vapor XXV's from Hockey Giant for about $60 per stick and are holding up fairly well. Some like the feel of wood over composite and vice versa. One other option is to get a composite shaft and a wood blade. The two piece set up allows you to try different curves and if you happen to break a blade then you can change blades.

Stick length is also going to be personal preference; the rule of thumb is to have the end of the stick up to your upper lip/bottom of your nose in bare feet (about chin height on skates). However, there are plenty of players; both past and present; that did not go with the rule of thumb. Some players at times dependent upon whether they are playing offense or defense sometimes prefer different length sticks (offense a bit shorter and defense a bit longer).

Traditionally, you want to have your stronger hand on top for more control (that's why some right handed players shoot left). But, traditions are meant to be broken and many players will adopt whichever feels more comfortable. Generally you will see more left handed sticks than right handed sticks.

Hopefully this helps and good luck

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08-03-2010, 04:35 PM
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Matt4776
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Thanks guys. Just one more question. I tried both a right-handed and a left-handed shot. I felt more comfortable with general stick skills and puck control with a left-handed shot, but I felt much more comfortable shooting with a right-handed shot. What should I do?

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08-03-2010, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt4776 View Post
Thanks guys. Just one more question. I tried both a right-handed and a left-handed shot. I felt more comfortable with general stick skills and puck control with a left-handed shot, but I felt much more comfortable shooting with a right-handed shot. What should I do?

if you want to be a sniper, there would be a lot more work involved, but teaching your RIGHT side to catch up to your LEFT side can do (puck control/stick skills), but if you are more of a playmaker/dangler/power forward, teach your left side to shoot. i think learning how to shoot effectively is harder than everything else. thats just me.

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08-03-2010, 04:45 PM
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Jarick
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Here are a couple links that I have written on the subject:

Hockey sticks (reverse order)

Equipment

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08-03-2010, 05:03 PM
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Find a cheap woodie with a low flex, so you should be able to flex it without much effort. Will make shooting alot easier and you'll be able to get the most out of it. Even if it means buying an "intermediate" stick.

Also, buy cheap at first. The more you play, you might change your mind about trying a different length, curve, flex, etc.

I'm also gonna contradict some advice above, a stick with more of a curve in the blade will make for easier puck handling and carrying it. It will also help your wristshot, which will probably be 90%+ of your goals if you most likely play the wing.

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08-03-2010, 07:04 PM
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Cool that your trying hockey!!
Ok so first off, get a wood stick, I wouldnt recoment a new player or a roller player get a composite. Especialy if your a new roller player.
The stick should come between the middle of your neck, and your nose when your on skates. A short stick is better for puck handeling, but harder to poke check and shoot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nullterm View Post
I'm also gonna contradict some advice above, a stick with more of a curve in the blade will make for easier puck handling and carrying it. It will also help your wristshot, which will probably be 90%+ of your goals if you most likely play the wing.
This is wrong. A stick with a smaller curve (Such as a malkin) is EASYER to handle and carry with. It also shoots harder, but less accurate. A smaller curve also makes it harder to shoot high, and slap shots are harder also.

Pros of Big curve:
Accurate
Slap shot
Shoot high (easyer)

Pros of small:
Stick handeling
hard shot.

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08-03-2010, 07:51 PM
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nullterm
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Can't speak for the general population, but in my own experience when I switched from a Forsberg curve to a deeper Coffey I found it easier to handle the puck. The more curvature of the blade made it easier to keep the puck on the blade for me.

A quick google looks like I'm the oddball maybe. But that's how it played out for me.

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08-05-2010, 09:12 AM
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Blueland89
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I just started playing about 3 months ago but have benn a fan my whole life the way i read to find out whether you are right handed or left handed is to grab a broom and start sweeping the first way you grab the broom is the way you should hold your stick the bottom hand is what hand you are. I'm a right handed shot and I can't tell you this it's a hell of a lot harder to buy right handed sticks.

Stick length from what Sean Skinner says it should go somewhere from you chest to your chin but really it's what ever you feel comfortable with Most european players use much longer sticks but most hockey sites will have a section to help you find your sizes.

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08-05-2010, 10:54 PM
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The Spicy Shrimp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nullterm View Post
Can't speak for the general population, but in my own experience when I switched from a Forsberg curve to a deeper Coffey I found it easier to handle the puck. The more curvature of the blade made it easier to keep the puck on the blade for me.

A quick google looks like I'm the oddball maybe. But that's how it played out for me.
I just picked up a Stastny Sherwood, which has a sick toe curve, and I feel like it's going easier to keep the puck on my blade. I messed around with a green biscuit, and it definitely felt better than my old Crosby curve.

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08-05-2010, 11:02 PM
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Razzmatazz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt4776 View Post
I am looking to start playing hockey, and I am going to start with Roller before I get into ice. First off, what is the main difference between composite and wood sticks? How tall should they be on my body when I stand it up?

Also, I am a righty in everything I do. Does that mean I shoot righty? I always assumed that but some guy told me that would mean I shot lefty.. which makes sense because there are so many left-handed shots in the NHL. On the website I was on looking at sticks, a lot of them are only available in lefty shots.

All help/advice would be appreciated. Thanks :/
Someone once told me, the top hand should be the same hand you would hold your sword with .

The reasoning is, that's the hand that has control on the stick, and never leaves it.

I'm right handed, and started shooting right handed at a young age, so I'm never changing it, although retrospectively it may have helped a little. I convinced my friend using that logic to go lefty, and I think he's had a lot of success with it.

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08-06-2010, 12:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt4776 View Post
Thanks guys. Just one more question. I tried both a right-handed and a left-handed shot. I felt more comfortable with general stick skills and puck control with a left-handed shot, but I felt much more comfortable shooting with a right-handed shot. What should I do?
Go lefty, it's a lot easier to learn how to shoot rather than learn how to be comfortable puck handling the wrong way(for you).

I can shoot left handed or right handed but I'm not very good puck handling lefty so I play right handed. You're going to puck handle a lot more than you shoot/pass also.

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08-06-2010, 01:53 AM
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Go lefty, it's a lot easier to learn how to shoot rather than learn how to be comfortable puck handling the wrong way(for you).

I can shoot left handed or right handed but I'm not very good puck handling lefty so I play right handed. You're going to puck handle a lot more than you shoot/pass also.
that's cool enough!

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08-07-2010, 02:22 PM
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vivianmb
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Originally Posted by PhXcoyotes View Post
Cool that your trying hockey!!
Ok so first off, get a wood stick, I wouldnt recoment a new player or a roller player get a composite. Especialy if your a new roller player.
The stick should come between the middle of your neck, and your nose when your on skates. A short stick is better for puck handeling, but harder to poke check and shoot.



This is wrong. A stick with a smaller curve (Such as a malkin) is EASYER to handle and carry with. It also shoots harder, but less accurate. A smaller curve also makes it harder to shoot high, and slap shots are harder also.

Pros of Big curve:
Accurate
Slap shot
Shoot high (easyer)

Pros of small:
Stick handeling
hard shot.
i beg to differ. the bigger curve will help with controlling the puck which includes carrying it and stickhandling.

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08-07-2010, 03:59 PM
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nullterm
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i beg to differ. the bigger curve will help with controlling the puck which includes carrying it and stickhandling.
That was my experience, based on the advice of my power skating instructor.

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08-10-2010, 03:14 PM
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I also started with roller. Here's my input. Will get flamed by some, but this has worked for me.

Your stick should feel comfortable when your holding it. I've tried cutting sticks shorter and also left them long. Buy the stick you want, put your skates on and hold your stick. The blade should lay flat on the ground when you stand in a "pass recieving position". The lie of each stick will have an impact, but in general cut the stick to what feels comfortable.

As far as wood vs. composite. Buy what you want. I am fortunate enough to be able to afford composite. The feel and technology is amazing. I'm not knocking wood sticks, they just aren't for me. If you are in the position to buy a $200.00 stick, and that's is what you like, get it. I would make sure you know whether your going to shoot left or right and what curve you want first though. As others have stated buying wood and trying different things will help you decide.

I shoot left and am right handed. Again there are many thoughts on how to determine this. I was a kid and bought the coolest stick Target had in the store. I had no clue. I would go to the store and play with both. Alot of Sports stores will have balls and pucks in that section. Grab one and stick handle a little bit. WHich ever feels natural is the one you should buy.

As far as curves go, I would go with a blade as straight as possible. The old Bure and Modano curves are what I would recommend. Not sure what model those would be now. (someone else will know, or you can ask the retailer.)

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08-11-2010, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by goalscorer View Post
I also started with roller. Here's my input. Will get flamed by some, but this has worked for me.

Your stick should feel comfortable when your holding it. I've tried cutting sticks shorter and also left them long. Buy the stick you want, put your skates on and hold your stick. The blade should lay flat on the ground when you stand in a "pass recieving position". The lie of each stick will have an impact, but in general cut the stick to what feels comfortable.

As far as wood vs. composite. Buy what you want. I am fortunate enough to be able to afford composite. The feel and technology is amazing. I'm not knocking wood sticks, they just aren't for me. If you are in the position to buy a $200.00 stick, and that's is what you like, get it. I would make sure you know whether your going to shoot left or right and what curve you want first though. As others have stated buying wood and trying different things will help you decide.

I shoot left and am right handed. Again there are many thoughts on how to determine this. I was a kid and bought the coolest stick Target had in the store. I had no clue. I would go to the store and play with both. Alot of Sports stores will have balls and pucks in that section. Grab one and stick handle a little bit. WHich ever feels natural is the one you should buy.

As far as curves go, I would go with a blade as straight as possible. The old Bure and Modano curves are what I would recommend. Not sure what model those would be now. (someone else will know, or you can ask the retailer.)
Wood is really tough to use and at $25, I'd just start with a cheap, $40-$60 composite until you figure out what curve/flex/kickpoint you'd like. Plus, even with a cheap composite, you'll start learning how to properly flex your stick on shots. Then, if you can afford it, there really is a big improvement by getting the $200 sticks. For a simple beginner curve, get something flat or closed (example: Iginla). I made the mistake of starting with a Sakic which helped elevate my shots, but the open face really started to annoy me when making stretch passes.

Of course, this is all ice info. hope it helps.

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08-11-2010, 05:53 PM
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nullterm
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Wood is really tough to use and at $25, I'd just start with a cheap, $40-$60 composite until you figure out what curve/flex/kickpoint you'd like. Plus, even with a cheap composite, you'll start learning how to properly flex your stick on shots. Then, if you can afford it, there really is a big improvement by getting the $200 sticks. For a simple beginner curve, get something flat or closed (example: Iginla). I made the mistake of starting with a Sakic which helped elevate my shots, but the open face really started to annoy me when making stretch passes.

Of course, this is all ice info. hope it helps.
Wood is better for getting a feel for the puck. Composite just doesn't have the same touch, though more durable in the long term.

They also flex fine if you find the right one. I got an intermediate woodie that has a 70 flex and I love it. Much more forgiving and consistent for my slapshots than any of my 85+ flex composites.

And if a $20 woodie snaps in your hands you don't care at all, just grab your backup.

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08-11-2010, 06:26 PM
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i would go with comp shaft and wood blades. at your level i don't think you'll break any sticks from slashes and definitely not from shots, however blades will wear fast depending on surface for roller. from experience, cheap up front cost will usually cost you more in the end. actually just go to your local rinks and look for broken ops in the trash, if you're lucky, you'll find something highend.

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08-13-2010, 12:58 AM
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i would go with comp shaft and wood blades. at your level i don't think you'll break any sticks from slashes and definitely not from shots, however blades will wear fast depending on surface for roller. from experience, cheap up front cost will usually cost you more in the end. actually just go to your local rinks and look for broken ops in the trash, if you're lucky, you'll find something highend.
that's right.

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08-13-2010, 01:07 AM
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Chairman Maouth
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Here are a couple links that I have written on the subject:

Hockey sticks (reverse order)

Equipment
Very impressive.

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