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I want to play hockey (never skated before)

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01-23-2007, 10:52 PM
Little Nilan
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This is a great thread, I've been skating and playing hockey for a few years now, but it's really been just a few games each year. Last year, I didn't skate even once. Anyways, personally, I'd say think about your learning strategy. I've come to realise I don't agree that skating without the puck is the best idea. I've learned to play with the puck, I always take a lot of wrist shots and I keep most of my attention on keeping my knees well bent and my stride long and powerfull. Hey, I'm not a real good player yet, for the time I've played, I look good in practice but in game situations, I'm lost.

That brings me to my next point. The way I got better playing is by trying to be good without the puck. That means trying to keep other guys from scoring or intercepting passes, once you do that, you'll get a good feel for the game. All in the meanwhile, continue on with your practices with the puck and eventually you'll get enough confidence.

Another help, as stupid as it sounds, is watch Kovalev, Malakhov or Fedorov play if you can, and look at them in slow-motion. They have perfect technical skills. Skating is always fluid, back straight, knees bent almost 90 degrees, and such. They stickhandle in front, not in the side, in a straight line all the time.

As for how I started playing, I signed up for hockey in college and got Gérard Gagnon as teacher(for those who don't know him, he was Mario Lemieux's coach in the Q the year he went to the memorial cup). He gave a lot of helpfull tips.

Now, I just go to one of the four rinks that are less then 15 mins from home ( ) and I downright tell the guys there I can't play hockey but I want to join in on the fun. I've never had someone say no and everyone's supportive. Generally, the kids under 14 who're the worst players on their teams are the ones the most annoying. Just remind them of their virginity and they'll quickly shut the hell up . Mostly though, the guys I meet at the rink are guys like the good posters you see on the Habs board(not the bad ones )

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