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Is the ability to stay healthy a skill?

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Old
01-09-2013, 09:19 PM
  #26
MadLuke
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A skill is the learned capacity to carry out pre-determined results often with the minimum outlay of time, energy, or both. In other words the abilities that one possesses.

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01-09-2013, 10:11 PM
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeBlondeDemon10 View Post
I think it used to be a skill. In today's game everyone hits and everyone is a target, never mind the cheap shots. With no more enforcers in the league, everyone is fair game. Not so many years ago, many players did not train in the off season and would use camp to get into shape. Today's players do much more than just skating to build and maintain their bodies; its almost a given that you show up for camp in top condition and have worked on certain weaknesses in the off-season. Also, a tremendous amount of luck is involved. The shot that Crosby took from Steckel was cheap yet somewhat preventable. But a player cannot always be 100 % ready for every hit. Today's equipment appears to be causing a lot more injuries (if Steckel is wearing an older version of elbow or shoulder pads, isCrosby's injury as serious?) But I do not know what man games missed looked like 30 years ago compared to today. My guess is that its much higher today. However, take Lemieux. His getting cancer was not a hockey related injury, but were his back problems? Was he not taking training seriously enough or was there a more complex problem with his back?
Great post and a couple of comments.

1) not sure if skill is the right word either as Farkas mentions. IMO a skill is something we can see in a young player and can project, at least to a certain degree, to the next level that each young player takes up the development ladder.

All to often the observation of a players ability to stay healthy or not is after the fact, hindsight is 20-20 proposition. If it was a true skill we would be able to predict these things, at least to some degree and with which players before based on observation and scouting before injuries happen.

2) Simple physics apply at some point IMO. With bigger, faster players, faster pace, changes in equipment like hard elbow pads, a significant increase in the number of hits, collisions and the impact of them being harder, more weight ect..

Too often modern players are being called soft, injury prone ect and not tough like in the old days and people are forgetting that the changes in the game that might be more the cause than the "skill" or lack of it, to stay healthy.

Just my 2 cents.

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01-09-2013, 10:16 PM
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
From January, 20, 2000. Trent McCleary's near fatal injury:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMpC0qWKGlg

Note if he uses proper technique when trying to block the shot - head to the boards/skates to the middle of the ice, Trent McCleary does not get hurt.

Basic shot blocking skill learned by Pee Wee at the latest.
Well it looks like he slipped but that's besides the point.

If a player blocks any shot he is putting his body in harms way as he can't control where the shot ends up and can't react quickly enough if it is a high shot to the head for instance.

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01-09-2013, 10:41 PM
  #29
Canadiens1958
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Simple Skill and Physics

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Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Great post and a couple of comments.

1) not sure if skill is the right word either as Farkas mentions. IMO a skill is something we can see in a young player and can project, at least to a certain degree, to the next level that each young player takes up the development ladder.

All to often the observation of a players ability to stay healthy or not is after the fact, hindsight is 20-20 proposition.
If it was a true skill we would be able to predict these things, at least to some degree and with which players before based on observation and scouting before injuries happen.

2) Simple physics apply at some point IMO. With bigger, faster players, faster pace, changes in equipment like hard elbow pads, a significant increase in the number of hits, collisions and the impact of them being harder, more weight ect..

Too often modern players are being called soft, injury prone ect and not tough like in the old days and people are forgetting that the changes in the game that might be more the cause than the "skill" or lack of it, to stay healthy.

Just my 2 cents.
Projections happen all the time at the developmental levels which is why you have AA,BB,CC down to A,B,C levels for age groups further subdivided into minor and major in certain regions. Youngsters are grouped by skill level to avoid injury. This has been part of youth hockey from the start.

Simple physics also covers the skill of rolling with a blow as opposed to fighting thru the blow. Watch how boxers roll or slip and neutralize blows. A learned skill. Likewise football players, some of the great running backs - Brown, Simpson, Payton, Sanders, Smith, short list whose careers were not marked by injuries.

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01-09-2013, 10:46 PM
  #30
Canadiens1958
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Technique

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardyvan123 View Post
Well it looks like he slipped but that's besides the point.

If a player blocks any shot he is putting his body in harms way as he can't control where the shot ends up and can't react quickly enough if it is a high shot to the head for instance.
Plenty of techniques that allow players to safely block shots while getting their head out of the way of danger.

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01-09-2013, 11:12 PM
  #31
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Quote:
Too often modern players are being called soft, injury prone ect and not tough like in the old days and people are forgetting that the changes in the game that might be more the cause than the "skill" or lack of it, to stay healthy.
Yeah, I don't buy that argument. Hockey players will always be hockey players and play through discomfort, pain and even severe injury. More than anything doctors are keeping them from playing because of our increased awareness of injuries. Funny, I was watching the Broadstreet Bullies documentary and watching some of those vicious hits from that era when only a few players wore helmets. For example, when Robinson checked Doernhofer into the boards so hard his head rattled off the glass. How could Doernhofer not have a concussion? How many of those guys played through major concussions because of the attitude back then? How could Schultz even hold a hockey stick with the amount of fights he was in punching helmets, teeth and skulls? So I'd say its relative. The speed and equipment of today is causing just as many injuries as back then, but we are more cautious about letting players play through the injuries. Insurance companies, I'm sure, play a major role in this.

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01-09-2013, 11:12 PM
  #32
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[QUOTE=Canadiens1958;57376233]Projections happen all the time at the developmental levels which is why you have AA,BB,CC down to A,B,C levels for age groups further subdivided into minor and major in certain regions. Youngsters are grouped by skill level to avoid injury. This has been part of youth hockey from the start.[QUOTE]

Avoiding injury might be a small part of it but the main part if for players at similar skills levels to challenge each other to get better is a much more important factor.

Also maybe you missed my point on projecting a player and his skill. I have yet to see anyone project which players will get major injuries and which ones will not, it's always after the fact that is mentioned.

Quote:
Simple physics also covers the skill of rolling with a blow as opposed to fighting thru the blow. Watch how boxers roll or slip and neutralize blows. A learned skill. Likewise football players, some of the great running backs - Brown, Simpson, Payton, Sanders, Smith, short list whose careers were not marked by injuries.
Once again, an after the fact assessment and nowadays all running backs have shorter shelf lives with players in the NFL being bigger faster and more impact on the collisions that every RB takes.

Rolling with the blow or slipping like Lacrosse players do is not physics but rather skills.

Bigger players going faster with more intent and actual outcomes of collisions simply means more injuries, it's not rocket science.

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01-09-2013, 11:17 PM
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeBlondeDemon10 View Post
Yeah, I don't buy that argument. Hockey players will always be hockey players and play through discomfort, pain and even severe injury. More than anything doctors are keeping them from playing because of our increased awareness of injuries. Funny, I was watching the Broadstreet Bullies documentary and watching some of those vicious hits from that era when only a few players wore helmets. For example, when Robinson checked Doernhofer into the boards so hard his head rattled off the glass. How could Doernhofer not have a concussion? How many of those guys played through major concussions because of the attitude back then? How could Schultz even hold a hockey stick with the amount of fights he was in punching helmets, teeth and skulls? So I'd say its relative. The speed and equipment of today is causing just as many injuries as back then, but we are more cautious about letting players play through the injuries. Insurance companies, I'm sure, play a major role in this.
There is no doubt though that there are many more collisions in the NHL now than there ever was.

Recently retired players like ray Ferraro have attested to this and we have film and statistics as well.

some people like to argue that the time and space isn't different but it surely is and there is a lot of evidence supporting it.

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Old
01-10-2013, 12:54 AM
  #34
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Facts

[QUOTE=Hardyvan123;57377667][QUOTE=Canadiens1958;57376233]Projections happen all the time at the developmental levels which is why you have AA,BB,CC down to A,B,C levels for age groups further subdivided into minor and major in certain regions. Youngsters are grouped by skill level to avoid injury. This has been part of youth hockey from the start.
Quote:

Avoiding injury might be a small part of it but the main part if for players at similar skills levels to challenge each other to get better is a much more important factor.

Also maybe you missed my point on projecting a player and his skill. I have yet to see anyone project which players will get major injuries and which ones will not, it's always after the fact that is mentioned.



Once again, an after the fact assessment and nowadays all running backs have shorter shelf lives with players in the NFL being bigger faster and more impact on the collisions that every RB takes.

Rolling with the blow or slipping like Lacrosse players do is not physics but rather skills.

Bigger players going faster with more intent and actual outcomes of collisions simply means more injuries, it's not rocket science.
Exceptional status is rarely granted because of the high risk of injury to youngsters when playing against much older players. Risk of injury trumps any developmental benefits.

People were projecting Eric Lindros' having injury problems early in his first NHL season. Playing with his head down.

Boxing is a counter example to your last paragraph. Boxers are bigger also, with access to a bank of films going back almost a century, yet annual boxing fatalities are down. Skills progressing in step with medical knowledge and technology.

NFL Films dating back to the fifties are used to teach young running backs and project. Also the number of touches a back gets is controlled better. Key point is that football especially at the developmental level recognized that skill and safety go hand in hand. Weight limits in age groups were common three generations ago,. Safety concerns - hitting with the head "Spearing" were addressed two generations ago.

Hockey has failed in this regard. When helmets were introduced rules in minor hockey aimed at proper stick control were ignored or eliminated. Techniques that showed youngsters how to roll with a check or check properly were minimized because the helmet offered protection.

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01-21-2013, 04:41 PM
  #35
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I think it is in a way. We know that Lindros certainly didn't have the skill to stay healthy. Why? He skated miles with his head down and never learned to skate with his head up. Watch Gretzky. He always had his head up. Sakic did too. Mario. Malkin does also. Obviously we know Mario had the back injuries but that isn't here nor there because I am trying to make a point that it is an important skill to learn to skate with the puck on your stick with your head up and being aware of your surroundings.

I think Crosby has done some clumsy things on the ice to get hurt and he has yet to master the fine art of picking his spots. That's all part of a melting pot of being able to stay healthy.

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01-21-2013, 05:04 PM
  #36
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If its really was a ability, guys like Kovalchuk, Iginla, Ovechkin etc are most skilled players in the world bar none. Oh wait they are.

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01-21-2013, 06:26 PM
  #37
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I'd say yes but not in of itself

I think staying healthy is a commitment to a lifestyle so I don't think it's something that you don't have control over.
Of course there will be always be people who do everything right and get hurt on the stupidest things while some should be getting injured left and right and just shrug it off; but staying healthy requires work.

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01-22-2013, 02:21 AM
  #38
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When i came to this thread my mind instantly goes thinking about Sami Salo. The dude had some freak injuries.

But i stand by my words earlier. If player gets injured due to the playing style, it is perfectly OK to think of it as a negative. If player is hurt all the time and gets his career shut short, it is perfectly OK to think of it as a negative.

However, if you get bitten by a snake, it should not count as a negative.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sport...article624990/

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01-22-2013, 03:32 AM
  #39
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Some injuries you just have to put down to pure luck (or lack thereof).

Other guys just naturally get hurt/injured easier than other people.

But I do think there is some element of skill involved too. How you take care of yourself, and your body, and how fit you try and maintain yourself, especially in the off-season, has a lot to do with avoiding the soft tissue/muscle injuries.

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01-22-2013, 01:19 PM
  #40
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It depends on luck and playing-style far too much to be a "skill".

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01-23-2013, 04:05 AM
  #41
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Staying healthy most definitely has a skill component but luck plays a big role in it too.

For example, guys like Patrick Kane are able to survive.

Don't dismiss staying healthy as a skill because of luck - luck is important in all other skills too. For example, there's a lot of luck involved in shooting accuracy: sometimes shooting % is very high and a player has a career year in goals.

The main difference is that luck has a huge impact on health rather than things like shooting %. 1 instance of bad luck with shooting percentage => miss an open net (happens often for players). Bad luck with freak accident on the ice => down possibly forever.

Bad luck shooting % may last 1 shot (1 second) while bad luck with health could last forever, hence luck has a larger negative impact. That being said, that doesn't negate the skill involved in staying healthy (ie: avoiding checks).

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01-23-2013, 04:20 AM
  #42
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It's not a skill, it's more about luck than anything.

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01-23-2013, 01:00 PM
  #43
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It's in the same category as height.... People have stronger bones/muscles that help them not to break (for most injuries) just like people that are taller... not exactly a skill, but useful/an advantage for sure.

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01-23-2013, 01:50 PM
  #44
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It's definitely an "asset", "ability", or "skill" that bridges the intangibles of training/preparation/dedication and skills of vision/anticipation/agility. Combination of too many (subjective) factors to attempt a "ranking" of one player vs a list of others, though.

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01-23-2013, 08:58 PM
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiens1958 View Post
When helmets were introduced rules in minor hockey aimed at proper stick control were ignored or eliminated.
Aint that the truth. Rare to see High Sticking's called by Ref's yet you started seeing it increasing exponentially with
the mandatory helmet & later inclusion of full face-cage "safety" requirements... nonsense.

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01-24-2013, 12:51 AM
  #46
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It's everything.

Avoidance: If only Lindros learned to keep his head up, some guys take a hit better, some are just too shifty

Resilence: some bodies can take it and some can't, some heads are easier to concuss than others

luck: Nobody is tough enough that they can resist getting sliced open by a wild skate

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01-24-2013, 02:27 AM
  #47
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a lot of it's playing style

there's a reason Lidstrom didn't get hurt much and it's not just luck

conversely the opposite could be said about Lindros

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02-13-2014, 08:48 PM
  #48
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I would consider it a combination of skill & intelligence. Take a player like Zac Rinaldo of the flyers for example. He knows that he has to play a certain style to stay in the league, which is a more physical style, hence the chances of getting injured more often. I player like Henrik Sedin knows that His skill level is better then most that play in the league, so He doesn't have to play a physical game to stay in the league, hence the chances of getting hurt is less likely then a player like Rinaldo. Sometimes a player has the skill but still plays a physical game, because He thinks He has to, to be effective. Eric Lindros is one of those players and He got hurt a lot, because He didn't use His eyes and ears enough out on the ice. Mark Messier on the other hand played the same way, but was much more alert to His surroundings on the ice and He was healthy for the majority of His career.

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02-16-2014, 07:21 PM
  #49
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I wouldn't call it a skill. I like how some describe it as an attribute.

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02-16-2014, 10:43 PM
  #50
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Big part skill, part attribute, part luck.

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