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Getting Back Into the Game

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Old
04-17-2007, 10:49 PM
  #1
Z-Z Pop1915
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Getting Back Into the Game

Hey guys, Im 16 years old and live on Long Island, New york. I used to play hockey in a father and son league about 7 years ago but stopped playing. Soon, basketball, baseball, and football became my 3 sports and Hockey was left aside. 7 years later, being the huge hockey fan that I am, I am dieing to get back into the game. I'd say mid february was when I really got the urge to play again. Since then I have brought out the old gloves, shin, and elbow pads and started skating. I bought Bauer Supreme 50s and feel pretty comfortable. I have skated about maybe 7 times since mid february, its tough getting ice time, in the mist of basketball season and now Baseball. My overall goal for this is to, end up ending my basketball career and trying out for my local Hockey team. Hockey isnt very big in my town but we have just enough kids to make a competitive team and next year a school "Varisty" team (which i will be trying out for). Im very athletic, and do feel comfortable out on the ice. I pick up speed well and can turn well. Lately i've worked on my crossover skating but that needs work. My biggest problem is hockeying stopping (lol) and staking backwards, but with some coaching and determination I dont see a problem with it. Once, I get the skating down, Im going to start working my stickhandling. I need a new stick so recomendations would help. Im plaing to go to some of the local shoot arounds and clinics to work on my shooting and overall game, but I dont want to look like a fool not being able to do the drills.

Im just looking for a little confidence boost, cause trying to learn a new sport is not the easiest thing to do, especially hockey. I was wondering if anyone has any stories of somebody picking up the game at this late an age and any recomendations about getting better. Thanks a lot.

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04-18-2007, 06:17 AM
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Gino 14
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If it's any help, I started playing at 41. Don't think too much about what others think of your lack of skill at this time in your developement, worry about ice time and improving. Don't worry about what stick you get, just get one and get to the ice, everything else will fall into place.

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04-18-2007, 10:49 AM
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LilWinger11
 
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I'm a figure skater and I started playing last year at 24. I knew how to skate but I was clueless about pretty much everything else. If it's your skating that needs work right now, I'd ask at your local rink about whether there are any instructors who give private lessons for hockey skills. A lot of rinks have one or two figure skating instructors with some degree of hockey experience who do this. I've known a couple of figure skating coaches who did both sports as kids and teach basic stickhandling and shooting too.

The most important thing is practice. The more you skate, the more comfortable it will become and it will be easier to do other things (like worry about a stick and a puck) while you skate

As far as getting a stick, I'd start with a pretty basic wood one. Once you've done more stickhandling and puck drills you'll have an idea of what you'd want for a flex and a lie and you can upgrade.

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04-18-2007, 11:32 AM
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I suggest you try to get some ice time before/separate from the team ice. First, you will need to practice your skills (mostly skating) and develop your muscles for skating. Second, depending on how much ice time the other players have had, you may feel you have a lot of catching up to do. So I suggest you move forward with an open mind, and if there are cuts don't get discouraged if you don't make it, because ice time and experience mean a lot and you can't really shortcut that in a matter of months. Team practices, if you get on the team, will be a great help but are usually very structured. So I suggest finding a beginners open hockey session to attend on your own or with a teammate so you can practice putting it all together and not have a whistle in your ear as your'e doing it.

Practice your skating, practice keeping your head up and stick down, and practice your stickhandling *without looking at the puck* as much as possible. It takes a long time to learn that skill, but it's vital. Just having your head up when you have the puck makes you more difficult to defend even if your puckhandling skills aren't as sharp that way. Even during skating drills, don't look down. Look around the circle you're skating, look at the goal, just keep your head up.

And if this team plays with body checking allowed, understand that keeping your balance and handling a hit will take practice. Don't allow yourself to get hit just a few feet from the boards (either be against the boards or well clear) and keep your center of gravity low.

You'll have a lot of fun however it works out.

Dave

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Old
04-18-2007, 10:10 PM
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Z-Z Pop1915
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Thanks guys.

Ya the team Ill be trying out for wont have cuts, as they need as many people as they can get. So I not going to need super super skills. I just need to have a strong base of skills.

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Old
04-19-2007, 07:57 PM
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Congrats on having the guts to get back into hockey. My mom and I both just started this year, I'm 30 and she's 48. We did a Hockey 101 program at our local rink and then did a ton of open skates (use small kids as obstacles to dodge) and pick ups before joining the beginner league. Just remember to keep your knees bent, stick on the ice, head up and you'll be fine. Best of luck!

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