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A Few Slapshot Questions

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Old
01-15-2014, 10:16 AM
  #1
mattw4466
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A Few Slapshot Questions

Hi,

First off I'm not a beginner I'm 25 and have been playing for 20 years, and for all 20 of those years my slapshot has been garbage haha.

I'm 5'8 200 pounds, I use a 77 flex Total One.6 that I cut down to 92 flex, so I use a short stick, with a pm9 blade.

I just have a couple questions:

Are you supposed to keep your bottom elbow locked on the back swing/foreswing? Because currently the best slapshot I can get is when I keep my elbow bent on the back swing and extend it into the ice right before I make contact with the ice.

When people say to snap your wrists forward on the follow through, is that right when you make contact with the puck or after?

I get a better slapper when I put my bottom hand lower on the shaft, past the mid point, does that mean I'm putting my hand past the kick point of the shaft? Or do mid kicks flex at the bottom hand, regardless of placement?

Should most of the force be going through the puck, as in parallel with the ice, or forward and down, sort of split between the ice and the puck?

Lastly, given that I use a pm9 blade, where on the blade should I be striking the puck? It seems that the hardest shots I get are when I strike the puck between the mid point of the blade and the heel.

]Thanks guys.


Last edited by mattw4466: 01-15-2014 at 10:43 AM.
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01-15-2014, 10:54 AM
  #2
Malarowski
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What helped me with that is the following:

1. Hold it pretty wide, wider than shoulders, so likely past mid-point on your stick, although I use low-kick sticks most of the time.

2. Don't think, don't hold back. I am struggling with the wrister because I actively think about all these factors as snapping, blade position etc and then flub it. During slappers I just get angry and hit as hard as possible with very nice results in my opinion.

1 was the biggest factor though.

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01-15-2014, 12:01 PM
  #3
SergeiMakarovStyle
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People are different, just practise your slapshot alot and eventually you will find out what works best for you.

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01-15-2014, 02:30 PM
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rinkrat22
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A few things that I use when working skill camps during the summer.
Everyone has a "sweet spot" in their shot, some people like the puck a little further forward, some a little farther back in their "stance" much like golfers have a preferred ball position. a wider grip on the stick has been mentioned. you have to get a good knee bend, a lot of players don't realize they are bending at the waist and are basically straight legged which throws off a bunch of stuff, usually causing you to catch the puck on the toe of the stick, and flexing the blade rather than the shaft. Also make sure you are getting your top hand away from your body as you wind up, but also as you strike the puck. I tell people as a visual reference to feel like they are pushing that top hand away from their body to start the shot.

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01-15-2014, 05:56 PM
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ORLY
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Honestly mine used to be garbage, now it's great, and now I can even launch a wicked one-timer, (depending on the quality/position of the pass to me).

-Wind up at least so the stick is horizontal in mid air behind you, and follow through quick. Don't hold the windup for a long time, unless gliding into a one-timer. Don't stop the stick when you hit the puck, follow through is important.

-With the follow through, the puck should raise and have velocity. The power depends on your strength, but technique is very important. Maybe use a lesser flex? I went from 85, put in an extension and my slappers have never been better (flex is at 76-78 because of extension).

-Footwork is also important, especially with one-timers. Bend the knees, I shoot left and my right knee is bent so much when I shoot. I used to bend at the waist moreso than kneees. Also, try to glide/coast into to pass and blast it. Go nuts. If you fall, who cares. Practice.

My slapshot used to glide along the ice with some power (not really though), but nothing like what I can do now. I have a great wrist shot so I avoided slapshots like the plague. Then I realized my snap shots were better than my slapshots, so it got me thinking that if I practiced more, I could really start hammering it.

This winter, I've been out at my local rink (outdoors, roof) about 15 times. My problem was consistency. About the 5th time out, I blasted a few and realized damn, I can do it. Every single time out I am getting more an more consistent. Sometimes I mess up, but that first time when you absolutely hammer a one-timer from a perfect pass bar-down on a goalie...it's a beautiful feeling.

You CAN get better at this. For me I felt it hopeless. But I practiced and practiced and whenever I got an amazing shot off, I tried to copy my technique again and again. Consistency will come, and it will be worth it because you will shoot it hard and high once, and then fail 50 more times. But then as you keep practicing, you'll notice you will become more consistent.

Sorry for the long post!

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01-16-2014, 03:35 AM
  #6
American in Paris
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The hard slap-shot is the most overrated skill in hockey.

Think about it from the goalie's point of view. What matters most is the time between when he realizes you're about to shoot and when the puck crosses into the net.

On the shooter's end this translates into the following steps:

1) Position puck and body to take shot
2) Wind up
3) Release
4) Puck transit

Steps 1-3 probably account for 90%+ of the total shot time, and even more for most players' slapshots.

Most guys I know focus entirely on increasing the power of their shot, marginally improving step 4 and making very little difference in the total shot time.

Once you realize that it's the total shot time that counts and not just the puck transit time, it makes sense to work on developing a shot that balances power with a quick set-up and release, and the trade-off here is unavoidable.

If you want to feel like a tough guy, work on that hard slap shot.

If you want to score goals, work on reducing your total shot time.

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01-16-2014, 04:20 AM
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jazzykat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by American in Paris View Post
The hard slap-shot is the most overrated skill in hockey.

Think about it from the goalie's point of view. What matters most is the time between when he realizes you're about to shoot and when the puck crosses into the net.

On the shooter's end this translates into the following steps:

1) Position puck and body to take shot
2) Wind up
3) Release
4) Puck transit

Steps 1-3 probably account for 90%+ of the total shot time, and even more for most players' slapshots.

Most guys I know focus entirely on increasing the power of their shot, marginally improving step 4 and making very little difference in the total shot time.

Once you realize that it's the total shot time that counts and not just the puck transit time, it makes sense to work on developing a shot that balances power with a quick set-up and release, and the trade-off here is unavoidable.

If you want to feel like a tough guy, work on that hard slap shot.

If you want to score goals, work on reducing your total shot time.
I'm a defenseman, and my captain keeps saying I have to get a better slapshot to challenge the goalie. I watch a lot of NHL and 50%+ of the shots from Dmen when even strength are not slapshots.

My snapshot is harder than most of my team mates and reasonably accurate. Maybe I should work on flinging pucks to the net and letting my team mates tip it in or have it bounce around in traffic, instead of shooting this inconsistent almighty slapshot.

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01-16-2014, 05:31 AM
  #8
izzy3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malarowski View Post
2. Don't think, don't hold back. I am struggling with the wrister because I actively think about all these factors as snapping, blade position etc and then flub it. During slappers I just get angry and hit as hard as possible with very nice results in my opinion.
I like this advice as it's pretty much the nature of a slapper. Sure as the goalie says the shot itself is not too probable to score alone, but put in some traffic or some guys in front who know how to deflect a shot and you have a valuable weapon. I love them shots even though I am relatively small guy. I'll fire them all the time, even on the rush, and I wouldn't say they don't work. Even a big fat rebound is a good result in my book.

I btw also grip wide, and know a lot of guys who have a wide grip when shooting them. Also look at Sakic: http://sports-kings.com/wp-content/u...lJoe_Sakic.jpg

I do not think that the kickpoint is really important (I heard this, but I shoot the same with low or mid kick and they fly the same). My only "secret" is a very-very hard grip with the bottom hand, and as mentioned above, punish that puck.

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01-16-2014, 05:53 AM
  #9
Canadiens1958
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Quick Execution

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzykat View Post
I'm a defenseman, and my captain keeps saying I have to get a better slapshot to challenge the goalie. I watch a lot of NHL and 50%+ of the shots from Dmen when even strength are not slapshots.

My snapshot is harder than most of my team mates and reasonably accurate. Maybe I should work on flinging pucks to the net and letting my team mates tip it in or have it bounce around in traffic, instead of shooting this inconsistent almighty slapshot.
The key is quick execution based on quick recognition. To do this you have to recognize the flow in the offensive zone, study your teammateshabits - how and when they cut to the net, their body and blade position.

When executing any shot or pass from the d-man position at ES in the offensive zone you cannot allow the openings to close or the opposition to have time to reset.

Work on the slap pass. Low quick shot < 18" that may be deflected or yields a rebound. Snap shot, wrister are more effective for these purposes.

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01-16-2014, 12:12 PM
  #10
sanityplease
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Slapshot's are effective, especially accurate one-timers. There's no faster or harder release than a one-timer. Goalies also have a harder time controlling rebounds from bullets.

Don't try to kill it when learning. Slow it down (practicing) & develop the 'feel' of weight transfer, blade contact etc.

Keep a wide grip, about double the length from your elbow to the center of your hand. Learn with a wide stance. Close the blade on wind-up, lean into the shot, press down with your lower arm on the down swing & pull with your upper, hit the ice before the puck & follow through with your swing.

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01-16-2014, 01:01 PM
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Coachtdoig
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A lot of good stuff about the slap shot on here. All I would add is work on your weight transfer and follow through (like others have stated). We get a lot of power in all of our shots from our legs and shifting our weight from our back leg to our front as we follow through will help you get more consistency out of not just your slap shot, but all of your shots.

Ciao,
TD

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01-16-2014, 06:26 PM
  #12
soireeculturelle
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one more unusual tip: work on your one-legged balance.

if you tend to fall over when transferring all your weight from the back leg to the front leg, you'll lose some pop and accuracy.

try stickhandling one-legged and doing one-legged squats + deadlifts. it will definitely help you get a good shot off faster in game situations.

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01-16-2014, 09:10 PM
  #13
19Backstrom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattw4466 View Post
Hi,

First off I'm not a beginner I'm 25 and have been playing for 20 years, and for all 20 of those years my slapshot has been garbage haha.

I'm 5'8 200 pounds, I use a 77 flex Total One.6 that I cut down to 92 flex, so I use a short stick, with a pm9 blade.

I just have a couple questions:

Are you supposed to keep your bottom elbow locked on the back swing/foreswing? Because currently the best slapshot I can get is when I keep my elbow bent on the back swing and extend it into the ice right before I make contact with the ice.

When people say to snap your wrists forward on the follow through, is that right when you make contact with the puck or after?

I get a better slapper when I put my bottom hand lower on the shaft, past the mid point, does that mean I'm putting my hand past the kick point of the shaft? Or do mid kicks flex at the bottom hand, regardless of placement?

Should most of the force be going through the puck, as in parallel with the ice, or forward and down, sort of split between the ice and the puck?

Lastly, given that I use a pm9 blade, where on the blade should I be striking the puck? It seems that the hardest shots I get are when I strike the puck between the mid point of the blade and the heel.

]Thanks guys.
Your elbow shouldn't be locked on the wind up. You should lock it when your stick hits the ice in order to flex it and follow through.
The snapping of the wrist comes after you strike the puck, just as it gets airborne, giving it the spin to fly accurately and fast.
Don't worry about your hand being under the kick point, that's because you cut your stick, so now your lower hand is past the mid kick of your stick. It doesn't make any difference.
For the pressure you apply, I can't tell you where it has to go exactly, but everyone winds up in a different manner. Some hit the ice only 3 inches behind the puck, and some others hit the ice a full foot behind it (I do). I'm not as heavy as you are, so I really need to lean in my shot to get a rocket out of it.
The curve doesn't really matter. Generally, the mid-heel portion of the blade is the sweet spot for slap shots. Don't hit it off the toe, you won't get a lot of power and the puck won't fly straight.

Hope it helps.

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Old
01-17-2014, 10:22 AM
  #14
Jarick
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Everything you're saying sounds like you're on the right track.

The only thing you may want to play with is where you contact the ice. Try for about 6" behind the puck and try to keep driving through the puck, not into the ice.

If you really have to give it everything you have to flex the stick, you may want to try dropping to an intermediate stick to see how that works. But if you've been playing a while and are fairly strong, 77 flex isn't a bad option if you are comfortable and it feels like it bends without too much effort.

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01-17-2014, 12:59 PM
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mattw4466
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Wow guys a lot of good advice, thanks a lot.

A couple people have mentioned lowering the flex.

Like I said I use a 92 flex, I'm strong and can bend it really easily even on wrist shots.

I tried a reebok 6k that I cut to like 79 flex and it just felt way too flexy, even on hard passes it would flex a lot.

I cut my stick short, like 55-56 inches, so it's about at my collarbones on skates, maybe I should try a longer stick.....would that help/does it matter?

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01-17-2014, 01:10 PM
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sanityplease
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattw4466 View Post
Wow guys a lot of good advice, thanks a lot...


I cut my stick short, like 55-56 inches, so it's about at my collarbones on skates, maybe I should try a longer stick.....would that help/does it matter?
I use the same length & have no problem ripping it. Just have to lean a bit lower.

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01-17-2014, 01:13 PM
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Malarowski
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattw4466 View Post
Wow guys a lot of good advice, thanks a lot.

A couple people have mentioned lowering the flex.

Like I said I use a 92 flex, I'm strong and can bend it really easily even on wrist shots.

I tried a reebok 6k that I cut to like 79 flex and it just felt way too flexy, even on hard passes it would flex a lot.

I cut my stick short, like 55-56 inches, so it's about at my collarbones on skates, maybe I should try a longer stick.....would that help/does it matter?
Stick length is mostly personal preference. I had them that short, but noticed that having them up to my chin made it easier for me overall.

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01-17-2014, 01:16 PM
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mattw4466
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Haha, ya I know there's no easy solution I just have to work on it, but I was sort of thinking about trying a longer stick any way. I'm a defenseman and the extra reach would be nice in my own zone and for 1 on 1's.

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01-20-2014, 02:20 PM
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hockey17jp
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With slapshots you basically just have to practice a ton and develop it.

Don't think you have to put your stick over your head on your wind up. I only bring my stick to a little above waist level and get off just as good of a shot as any of my teammates.

You also shouldn't worry about being able to lift the puck and go top shelf with your clapper. A good defensemen's slapshot should be low and hard so your teammates can tip it or get a good rebound.

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01-21-2014, 11:35 AM
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Jarick
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A few things I'm thinking about with slappers:

1. I used to take the windup back away from my body, and now I take it straight up in the air almost. I saw Ovechkin doing this, tried it for myself, and my slappers are quicker to get off and seem like they have better zip.

2. I was thinking about this last night, it's probably better to focus on a fast shooting motion than taking a strong/hard shot. I tend to do the latter, but I would think that the speed of the blade/stick has a bigger impact on the shot. Something I plan on working on.

3. Speaking of small windup, I want to really focus on my short windup shots. Only winding up to the knee height or so. And then work from there.

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01-22-2014, 12:25 PM
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mattw4466
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I ended up figuring out how to take a good one, and took some of your advice:

I was hitting the ice way too far behind the puck and smashing the stick blade at too vertical of an angle into the ice, so pretty much all my power was going into the ice. This was the biggest problem, putting my power down into the ice instead of through the puck,that was 99% of the problem.

I was keeping my front hand too close into my body, I extended it out further away from my body.

Bent my knees a little bit more.

I was pulling up on the follow through too quickly, now on the follow through I sort of push my blade towards the net instead of just kind of pulling it up. When I push my blade forward on the follow through instead of just kind of pulling up to complete the arc, I can go high with the shot, which I couldn't do before.

After I learned how to take one with the bauer supreme one.6 in 92 flex, I bought a sherwood true touch t-100 75 flex.....and it's like 100 times easier to take a hard slap shot. Could be the curve too I guess, ryan pp09.....wicked hard to go low with snap/wrist shots though.

After using the true touch I can't believe how crappy the bauer is, wow thing is like a 2x4.

I almost can't get over how crappy that bauer stick is compared to the sherwood....I've never used a high end hockey stick before, the difference is pretty amazing.


Last edited by mattw4466: 01-22-2014 at 12:51 PM.
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01-22-2014, 01:05 PM
  #22
Jarick
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Good to hear!

That's why so many of us harp on a good composite. Yep, you can play hockey with a wood stick or I guess a $60 piece of plastic, but it's just much easier and more effective to play with a quality twig. The only downside is the price, and that really only starts to matter if you break them a lot. Most adults don't break sticks nearly as often as high level competitive hockey players.

For your wrist/snap shots to go low, practice the shot kind of like it was a pass. You know how you described the top hand follow through for slappers? That's how I think of a low wrist shot. Instead of the stick rotating around the top hand in an arc, I want it more parallel, like I'm pushing.

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01-22-2014, 01:08 PM
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mattw4466
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarick View Post
Good to hear!

That's why so many of us harp on a good composite. Yep, you can play hockey with a wood stick or I guess a $60 piece of plastic, but it's just much easier and more effective to play with a quality twig. The only downside is the price, and that really only starts to matter if you break them a lot. Most adults don't break sticks nearly as often as high level competitive hockey players.

For your wrist/snap shots to go low, practice the shot kind of like it was a pass. You know how you described the top hand follow through for slappers? That's how I think of a low wrist shot. Instead of the stick rotating around the top hand in an arc, I want it more parallel, like I'm pushing.
Ya, that's really the only way I can keep snap/wristers low with that blade, at least for now, push the shot instead of snapping it with my hands out in front. The blade pattern is kind of a wedge, although it's not nearly as open as a drury/drury clone.

I've only broken one stick ever, the original gold synergy, that my dad bought used, and the blade just kind of tore, after like, I don't know maybe 8 years of very hard use, practice, games, year round play. Never snapped a shaft.


Last edited by mattw4466: 01-22-2014 at 01:26 PM.
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01-22-2014, 09:06 PM
  #24
rinkrat22
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a good visual is "chest comes up, shot goes up, chest stays down shot stays down"

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01-28-2014, 05:41 AM
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Does anyone have trouble getting slapshots to rise with a Sakic curve? If not are there any tips you can provide. I can raise them with power using a P9, Iglina, and somewhat successfully with a Drury/Nash but mine just suck with Sakic.

They either skitter across the ice very fast or flutter through the air with little power. My stick is right up to my chin on skates and has plenty of flex.


Last edited by jazzykat: 01-28-2014 at 06:11 AM. Reason: Clarity
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