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Is there a potential?

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07-14-2014, 07:12 PM
  #1
jenya56
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Is there a potential?

So I have a question. I have a boy who started hockey last season, one month short of being 8. He tried out for travel team this year but did not make it. He did progress nicely though during this last year. We have in house program that trains twice per week and one weekend game. I am also looking to hire a private coach to train him twice a week. However, these practices with private coach are super early and super expansive. Now, the question....do you think a kid of average abilities would be able to catch up with his peers that started playing at a tender age of 2/3/4 are these private lessons really worth it? I guess the goal would be to eventually get into that traveling team and perhaps play for college. I am just wondering how much money, time and effort should we invest.

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07-14-2014, 07:36 PM
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Wilch
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Starting at 8 isn't late at all. If your son is really into hockey, he should be able to catch up in no time with plenty of ice time and proper guidance.

Get your son on the ice as much as you can, let him work on his hands in the backyard if you live in a house. Set up a shooting & puck handling mat and a goal net.

With kids... You'll see progress by the week.

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07-14-2014, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenya56 View Post
So I have a question. I have a boy who started hockey last season, one month short of being 8. He tried out for travel team this year but did not make it. He did progress nicely though during this last year. We have in house program that trains twice per week and one weekend game. I am also looking to hire a private coach to train him twice a week. However, these practices with private coach are super early and super expansive. Now, the question....do you think a kid of average abilities would be able to catch up with his peers that started playing at a tender age of 2/3/4 are these private lessons really worth it? I guess the goal would be to eventually get into that traveling team and perhaps play for college. I am just wondering how much money, time and effort should we invest.
It is a fun sport to learn at that age. Generally speaking, it is good to start by getting the fundamentals right, best done with friends, or potential friends, at around the same level. They will feel themselves improving quickly at a rate that matches their efforts and possibly more...and no matter where he ends up...if he enjoys the game...it doesn't get any better than that.

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07-15-2014, 12:42 AM
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It all depends on the kids effort level really. If they try hard every practice, are willing to listen and learn, then there is no reason they can't be at the same level as the other kids or even excel. 8 is not nearly too late to learn this stuff. Maybe the extra coaching will be good to help catch up and to do some off season camps are always a good idea too.

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07-15-2014, 08:58 AM
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YES! Private instruction will do more for him in a few weeks than an entire season of house league coaching.

House coaches are generally not coaches, their dads and volunteers and while they may be very good or know the game, they will never be able to actually coach or give your kid the personal attention that he may need like a private and trained instructor can.

A private instructor can actually work on what your child needs to work on. He will be able to know where he is progressing and where he isnt, then target those areas for instruction. Something that cannot be done in house team practices.

If you can afford it, its most definitely worth getting him the private instruction. If you commit to that, he will be surpassing the other kids without the private instruction in no time.

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07-15-2014, 09:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenya56 View Post
So I have a question. I have a boy who started hockey last season, one month short of being 8. He tried out for travel team this year but did not make it. He did progress nicely though during this last year. We have in house program that trains twice per week and one weekend game. I am also looking to hire a private coach to train him twice a week. However, these practices with private coach are super early and super expansive. Now, the question....do you think a kid of average abilities would be able to catch up with his peers that started playing at a tender age of 2/3/4 are these private lessons really worth it? I guess the goal would be to eventually get into that traveling team and perhaps play for college. I am just wondering how much money, time and effort should we invest.
My two cents, although my son is 5 and not 8,

I wouldn't set goals or expectations at playing for college or anything like that. That's too far down the road and too much pressure. And it depends on skill level too.

I would focus on fostering a passion for the game and build hard work, teamwork, and individual skills. If your son is passionate and dedicated (hey it happens for some kids young), investing in some private lessons would be great.

I'd also recommend diversifying his interests if you don't already, so he isn't just playing hockey 12 months a year. I've talked with a lot of coaches and some people who played competitively as kids and they fought burnout when focused exclusively on one sport. My son plays soccer in the summer and does lots of other things, but of course we focus on hockey in the winter.

Bottom line though, if he's having fun and has a good attitude, that's really all that matters to me.

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07-15-2014, 10:57 AM
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one of my sons friends decided to try and play travel hockey. he went from never having skated in the spring, to making a bantam B team the following fall. And that's 13 year olds, and the first year of checking.

Was he the best player on his team? nope, but that kid worked his tail off in private lessons, house league, and public skates, and caught up quick. Towards the end of his first season he was getting consistent PK time because of his endless hustle.

He didn't have any goals like college or whatever, he just wanted to play. He had the advantage of having played travel level in other sports, so he had a good idea of what would be expected of him

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07-15-2014, 01:31 PM
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My son started playing at 11 and he was the Captain of his High School Hockey team this past year. I put him in power skating when he first started and that really helped him to become a really good skater rather quickly.

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07-15-2014, 02:59 PM
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I actually coach kids this age and a little younger. The trick for the older kids who come to hockey new is that (obviously) the skill gap is higher since the older kids have been at it longer. That said, in my experience most kids can close the gap within a season or two (so there is DEFINITELY potential) ... the key is to keep them motivated / make sure they're having fun and not feeling isolated.

Private coaching definitely helps with that.

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07-15-2014, 08:12 PM
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^ is there any power skating for 6 year olds?

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07-16-2014, 10:56 AM
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Tacks92
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I'm not sure about power skating per se, but most rinks will work with coaches who do small group or individual training which can be oriented towards whichever skills need the most attention (skating, for instance).

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07-16-2014, 01:09 PM
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My dad started me out in hockey at 8 despite a love of the game. He wanted me to learn to become a really good skater first so he enrolled me in skating lessons. When I began to play in an organized league at 8, it was clear that I was an above average skater compared to my peers but I lacked the coordination and hockey skills that many of the other kids who had played previously had. I was quick to pick them up due to a love of the game and constant practice (i was just having fun playing with friends) and after 2 years of house league I moved to the A level. Finished my career as a top scorer at the AA level and played high school hockey. So to answer your question, its not a big deal that your son is just starting the game at 8. He will catch up! Ultimately you shouldn't care what level your son plays, the main thing is whether he enjoys the game and has fun while playing. As long as he has fun, he will continue to play and build relationships with others within the game which should make him happy. The number one thing you want to see your child become is happy!

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07-16-2014, 08:33 PM
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I started around that age playing in an atom house league after only learning to skate a year before. Even though I could skate it defiantly wasn't one of my strengths...Only two years after I made the Peewee rep team. Two years after that I got the privilege of having an Assistant Captain position on a rep team so if your son loves the game then I see no reason why he couldn't be playing on a rep team in a few years and If he loves the game go even farther.

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07-17-2014, 01:56 AM
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jenya56
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Thanks guys

Thank you, guys! I agree what matters a lot is a fun factor. But also, there is a potential for each person. I really do not like an american attitude of .....yay! Good job, kiddo! Even if the kid is doing poorly and the coach knows it. I think it is is a waste of time, effort and money. I want the coach to be upfront with me and tell me.....yes, the kid has the potential to succeed in this or that. If not, then it will be up to the kid and his family to decide what and how much they want to invest in that sport. For some, nothing would change , but for others something might. My kiddo does enjoy hockey at this point and at this point we did decide to invest in private lessons. They are expansive and are super early but we will try and take it one season at a time. We live less than a minute a way from a rink so that is a bonus

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07-17-2014, 02:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenya56 View Post
Thank you, guys! I agree what matters a lot is a fun factor. But also, there is a potential for each person. I really do not like an american attitude of .....yay! Good job, kiddo! Even if the kid is doing poorly and the coach knows it. I think it is is a waste of time, effort and money. I want the coach to be upfront with me and tell me.....yes, the kid has the potential to succeed in this or that. If not, then it will be up to the kid and his family to decide what and how much they want to invest in that sport. For some, nothing would change , but for others something might. My kiddo does enjoy hockey at this point and at this point we did decide to invest in private lessons. They are expansive and are super early but we will try and take it one season at a time. We live less than a minute a way from a rink so that is a bonus
In my opinion, at the end of the day, you just want your kid to be happy regardless of his potential.

But living less than a minute away from a rink is not just a bonus, it's a godsend.

Your kid can pretty much just get dressed up at home and walk to the rink with skate guards.

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07-17-2014, 10:58 AM
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I don't think it's so much a "yay for participation" as it is for learning to work hard. If you put in the work, you'll go as far as your talent allows.

Sounds like he enjoys it, and if it's not too much trouble (time and money wise), it's a great investment.

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07-17-2014, 10:53 PM
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Malcolm Sadbad
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There are limits on what the body and brain of a 3-5 year old can learn, so those 5 extra years of hockey that the "born with skates on" kids have is more like a 2 year advantage, if that. It is a gap that can be easily made up.

My son was almost 8 when he started, he's done 1 year of Novice and 1 year of Atom so far. He worked hard through the spring and summer last year, and made phenomenal progress in his first year. He ended up leapfrogging over most of his friends who are in hockey, so I somewhat failed at my original goal of helping him connect better with his friends at school.

I would say you are on the right track with the private lessons, if you can afford it, as I have recently come to believe that the main early success factors in hockey is 1-on-1 coaching, which for most kids is usually their dad and/or brother.

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07-18-2014, 01:40 PM
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There are limits on what the body and brain of a 3-5 year old can learn, so those 5 extra years of hockey that the "born with skates on" kids have is more like a 2 year advantage, if that. It is a gap that can be easily made up.
Put my kids on the ice starting at 4 and I agree there's not a whole lot of benefit to it. A friend of theirs at 5 got caught up in only a couple months. When they are ready, they are ready, physically.

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07-20-2014, 11:59 PM
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YES! Private instruction will do more for him in a few weeks than an entire season of house league coaching.

House coaches are generally not coaches, their dads and volunteers and while they may be very good or know the game, they will never be able to actually coach or give your kid the personal attention that he may need like a private and trained instructor can.

A private instructor can actually work on what your child needs to work on. He will be able to know where he is progressing and where he isnt, then target those areas for instruction. Something that cannot be done in house team practices.

If you can afford it, its most definitely worth getting him the private instruction. If you commit to that, he will be surpassing the other kids without the private instruction in no time.
Agreed. I started at 9 and played competitively up to 18. I could skate well and my stickhandling is but after 9 years of playing I should have been better. Just from watching youtube videos I'm seeing some basic drills I didn't learn back then that could have helped a lot.

Some training camps should help. I never went to one but I can only assume they would.

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07-21-2014, 11:22 PM
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Started when i was 9. Took private lessons with my brother and an instructor for a year. I worked my ass off to catch up to all the other kids going house league>single a>double a>triple a>junior and now ive been offered a scholarship in vancouver next year. I was never coached by ny dad and dealt with a lot of politics but it is possible to overcome a late start.

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07-22-2014, 03:27 AM
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Bowie Horvat
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You need to play with him if you want him to love hockey.

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07-25-2014, 01:21 PM
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My son started playing last year at the age of 8. I thought he was a ok skater and signed him up for private hockey lessons because he constantly lost the puck while skating. The instructor said he was not a good enough skater and should become a stronger skater and he did not need private hockey lessons at this time. As a result, I signed him up for ice skating lessons with a "figure skater". She made him work on is edges and balance which has made a world of difference. He is much more confident and can out skate most to the puck.

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07-26-2014, 12:14 AM
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There is no free ride/full college hockey schlorship.

Play hockey for fun. You want college paid for, spend the hockey money on private tutoring!

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07-27-2014, 03:36 PM
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You need to play with him if you want him to love hockey.
I'd tend to agree with this statement. I first started playing hockey at 6 or 7 because my parents (who dont skate) wanted me to do *something* physical. for 3 seasons I was by far the worst player on the ice on any team I was on, and dropped out of hockey when we moved to another city.

a couple of years later I started to player street hockey and roller hockey with friends (who were also beginners), except this time I put more work into it and had my dad drive me to an outdoor roller rink everyday after he came home from work. there really wasnt much he could help me with drill-wise, but just having him there (and occasionnally telling me we'd go home if I didn't give a good effort) was enough to make me motivated. a year later I started ice hockey again, and went from house league to A to high school varsity in 3 years.

when I think back, that was also the moment in time I started having the inner motivation to put in extra time/effort if I wanted to get better at something. my parents were always pretty demanding and put me in language classes/swim classes/art classes outside of school, but it was that 1 year when I was in middle school that kind of made it a personal attitude.

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07-29-2014, 03:35 PM
  #25
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Some kids can have all the skill in the world but their attitude is in the wrong place.

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