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The Hockey Noob Chronicles

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10-19-2010, 05:59 PM
  #1
beth
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The Hockey Noob Chronicles

I thought it would be fun to have a thread where noobs like me can come together for encouragement and support as we jump into the world of recreational hockey. Please jump in and share.

So I'm Beth, and I knew nothing of hockey before my 5 (now 6) year old started playing. We thought it would be a good fit for him as he's sort of rough and tumble and has always liked whacking stuff with big sticks. When he started playing, his dad and I started watching the Stanley Cup playoffs, and we would google any call that we didn't understand, learning how the game worked.

It was watching the playoffs that sucked me into hockey. Up until this point, I'd assumed that hockey was a clumsy, brutish game. I seriously had no idea of the amount of skill and finesse that goes into it. The turning point for me was when Marc Savard made that overtime goal - that puck was bouncing on the ice, and he just sends it into a tiny little corner of net through a bunch of people. My reaction was something like, "are you ****ing kidding me??" I was amazed. I hate all forms of televised sports, but I was now totally enraptured by hockey.

In august, the local women's league put on a Try Hockey Free day, where they geared us all up and then ran us noobs through an hour of drills and a scrimmage. I seriously thought I was either going to puke or pass out by the end of that hour, but I was smiling the whole time. I totally want to join these ladies, but I'm taking this night class this quarter that conflicts with their schedule. So I will have to wait until december and then I imagine I will be put on their wait list, but I will be able to practice with them.

In the meantime, I've been practicing on my own twice a week during the day while my kids are in school. It's been almost 3 months now? The cool thing about being an adult when you start is that you can totally see your progress as the nerves hook up and you feel your body fine-tune your balance week to week. Every time I go, it seems a little more natural. Lately I've started doing stick-and-puck and I have the ice to myself for over two hours. Which is great for all the room, but sometimes is a bit lonely! It's going to be weird to start playing with actual people.

Oh, another thing that has happened recently is that my son's coach has encouraged me to join him on the ice. So now I help herd a bunch of Mites at their practice. I've even got my level 1 coaching certification. It's totally fun, and it's more ice time for me, so a total win-win.

Anyhoo, I would like to hear about how other adults came to decide to finally go for it, and how they are progressing. I thought we could cheer each other on.


Last edited by beth: 10-19-2010 at 06:06 PM.
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Old
10-19-2010, 06:12 PM
  #2
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I am 28 years old and just started playing seriously 2 months ago. I played a lot of ball/roller hockey when I was a kid and I have ice skated before but I had never played organized ice hockey before.

Last winter I also played in a ball hockey league and played on outdoor rinks with my buddies every Saturday that it was cold enough.

About 2 months ago I started an Adult Learn to Play Hockey class here in Chicago. It is called Hockey 101 and it is done at Johnny's Ice House right near the United Center. I am having a blast learning to play the game and I am actually doing the same class again and then I will probably move up to Hockey 102. Tonight is our final class and we have a full 40 miunte scrimmage with goalies and I am really excited. The other guys and girls in my class have become friends and we have started renting out a rink in Chicago on Friday Nights to hold a beginner scrimmage that is awesome. I am completely hooked and I am in love with the game of hockey. No other sport comes close to the difficulty or the satisfaction.

I can't believe last year at this time I was asking a buddy how to cut down a stick and now I am playing ice twice a week.

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10-19-2010, 06:30 PM
  #3
DJnet65
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This thread is a great read for anybody beginning hockey, or anyone who plays hockey for that matter.

http://hockey.inlinewarehouse.com/showthread.php?t=7455

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10-19-2010, 06:56 PM
  #4
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ChiTownHawks ~ it's great that you're in a class. I wish there was one happening now that I could go to. The next one at my local rink won't be until spring, and other rinks nearby have classes but they don't work with my schedule. So now I'm just learning via Youtube and that cute Jeremy kid. Like today - I've been trying to figure out wrist shots, so last time I went I tried a bunch but I totally sucked at it, and then I looked at all the videos again to see what I'm doing wrong and today I was much, MUCH better. I managed to get at least 75% of them in the air with some authority. I still need to get all the muscles to coordinate, but that will come with practice.

DJnet65 - it's a great thread! I've read through it all but it seems to have petered out a bit. That's why I thought it would be fun to bring something like that here.

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10-19-2010, 11:00 PM
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I've been a fan of hockey for well over ten years, but did not start playing adult recreational hockey until the Spring of this year.

In February 2009, my brother passed away while playing hockey; he had just scored a goal a few minutes prior and was sitting on the bench. He started to feel ill and collapsed on the bench. He was taken to the hospital but did not make it.

I told myself that I would learn how to skate so that I could at least go out to stick/puck sessions to honor my brother and to also make a wholehearted attempt at learning how to skate which would hopefully lead to playing ice hockey. I went to public skates every week for months and months until I felt I was ready to suit up and go to a stick/puck session. My first stick/puck session was hilarious to say the least. Firstly, I show up and I am using a stick that is not cut down; it's like up to my eyeballs in my skates. Secondly, my skating is still pretty poor at this point, so I'm moving around going like 1mph and sweating buckets. So, I do stick/puck sessions for more than six months; cut down my stick and my skating improving fractionally.

Towards the end of 2009, I start looking into joining a team and contact a couple of teams in my area. Luckily I was able to get a spot on a EEEE team, which had a mix of players that were totally new like me and others that have been playing for a couple of years. Even though my skating is still not as strong as it could be, but I was assigned to be part of the d line and have been happily there ever since.

My goal is to become a better skater, better defensman and maybe even score a goal or two during the season. I'll most likely be with my team for a while to come. When I feel that I'm ready to move up, then I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

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10-19-2010, 11:16 PM
  #6
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SouthpawTRK, how heartbreaking it must be to lose your brother so unexpectedly. I think it's so sweet how you've found a way to connect with him via hockey. And it sounds like you've found a good team to settle into.

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10-19-2010, 11:25 PM
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If I could have just one wish, it would to have my brother back. Being on the ice is definitely a way that I stay connected with him. We had a memorial skate for him in February of this year; some of his team mates and myself had an entire sheet of ice for an hour. I like the team that I'm on since they are all about getting players to improve and hopefully move on to higher divisions. The mentality that they have is a lot like my brother; have a lot of fun and strive to get better.

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10-20-2010, 12:29 AM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SouthpawTRK View Post
I've been a fan of hockey for well over ten years, but did not start playing adult recreational hockey until the Spring of this year.

In February 2009, my brother passed away while playing hockey; he had just scored a goal a few minutes prior and was sitting on the bench. He started to feel ill and collapsed on the bench. He was taken to the hospital but did not make it.

I told myself that I would learn how to skate so that I could at least go out to stick/puck sessions to honor my brother and to also make a wholehearted attempt at learning how to skate which would hopefully lead to playing ice hockey. I went to public skates every week for months and months until I felt I was ready to suit up and go to a stick/puck session. My first stick/puck session was hilarious to say the least. Firstly, I show up and I am using a stick that is not cut down; it's like up to my eyeballs in my skates. Secondly, my skating is still pretty poor at this point, so I'm moving around going like 1mph and sweating buckets. So, I do stick/puck sessions for more than six months; cut down my stick and my skating improving fractionally.

Towards the end of 2009, I start looking into joining a team and contact a couple of teams in my area. Luckily I was able to get a spot on a EEEE team, which had a mix of players that were totally new like me and others that have been playing for a couple of years. Even though my skating is still not as strong as it could be, but I was assigned to be part of the d line and have been happily there ever since.

My goal is to become a better skater, better defensman and maybe even score a goal or two during the season. I'll most likely be with my team for a while to come. When I feel that I'm ready to move up, then I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.
That's a great story man. RIP to your brother. It sounds like he would be very proud of you...

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10-20-2010, 02:57 AM
  #9
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Wow amazing story... I feel somehow as if it's wrong to post after that. Wow.

As for me, I'm 25 and just learning to skate so I can eventually play ice hockey... It seems like it's gonna take a while, but oh well. Such is life, things take time sometimes. As my friend says, Bure didn't skate like Bure his first few months on the ice (of course, Bure had some 20 years on me when he learned, but anyway... lol). I'm currently taking basic skating lessons and going to public skates twice a week.

For now I've managed to find a beginner-ish ball hockey drop-in, so I'm learning how to position myself and play the game in that way. Also seems like it's gonna take a while to get the hang of it

The plan is to be a goalie-- someday --but it's gonna take a loooooot of steps to get there haha.

As for how this "wanting to play hockey" thing started, well... Let's just say the Vancouver Olympics changed my life.

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10-20-2010, 08:35 AM
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SouthpawTRK, what a great way to honor your brother.

I'm Lisa, I've been a Bruins fan all my life--I used to beg my parents to send me to hockey camp, but it just wasn't in the cards for me. I finally got into it this past summer, when I found out that the local rink holds an adult intro to hockey a couple of times a year. My husband, who plays beer league, told me to go for it and helped me get my gear. I think he's regretting it now because all I do is talk hockey.

Right now, I'm playing in a Chix rec league, there's a good mix of beginners like me and experienced skaters. The better skaters are helpful with answering questions and give suggestions for better play; sometimes they'll give you a little room to figure it out when you get the puck, and sometimes they bring it to keep you honest.

I'm addicted. I never ever thought I would get the chance to play hockey.

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10-20-2010, 10:40 AM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beth View Post
ChiTownHawks ~ it's great that you're in a class. I wish there was one happening now that I could go to. The next one at my local rink won't be until spring, and other rinks nearby have classes but they don't work with my schedule. So now I'm just learning via Youtube and that cute Jeremy kid. Like today - I've been trying to figure out wrist shots, so last time I went I tried a bunch but I totally sucked at it, and then I looked at all the videos again to see what I'm doing wrong and today I was much, MUCH better. I managed to get at least 75% of them in the air with some authority. I still need to get all the muscles to coordinate, but that will come with practice.
beth, when that class comes around again take it if you can. I have learned so much from my class and I have enjoyed every minute of it. Last night was our final class and we had a full 40 min scrimmage. It was awesome I had 2 goals and on D I made a couple of good plays. I actually checked this little guy a couple times when he was stickhandling up this ice with his head down. I felt bad about it but one of my coaches told me even though it is non checking that does not mean non contact and if he is skating up the ice with his head down and you are going for the puck then you did nothing wrong. I have to say I really laid him out a couple times, but I did apologize more than a few times.

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10-20-2010, 10:49 AM
  #12
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Copeland ~ oh, how I wish that I'd figured out that I should play hockey at 25! You have so much more time to get awesome.

socktape~ it's nice to see another woman here! I know what you mean about becoming addicted. As soon as I come off the ice, I'm looking forward to skating again - especially if I haven't fallen that day! That's cool that you can share hockey with your husband. I've tried to get my husband to get into it, as he's pretty athletic, but the bug has not bitten him. He's totally supportive of me, though, and has not said anything about all the gear that has mysteriously shown up in our house.

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10-20-2010, 10:58 AM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownHawks View Post
beth, when that class comes around again take it if you can. I have learned so much from my class and I have enjoyed every minute of it. Last night was our final class and we had a full 40 min scrimmage. It was awesome I had 2 goals and on D I made a couple of good plays. I actually checked this little guy a couple times when he was stickhandling up this ice with his head down. I felt bad about it but one of my coaches told me even though it is non checking that does not mean non contact and if he is skating up the ice with his head down and you are going for the puck then you did nothing wrong. I have to say I really laid him out a couple times, but I did apologize more than a few times.
I'm planning on taking it when I can - though I might not need to as the women's league here has actual practices with a coach, which is really nice for those of us who are new. Great job in your scrimmage! Your story reminds me of the scrimmage I was in on the Try Hockey Day - there was this other newbie woman coming down the boards with the puck, and I was determined to get it and we collided. She was like twice my size and I totally laid her out. It's non-checking and I stopped and looked around to see if I was in trouble. One of the women from the league just shrugged and said, "that's hockey!" Meanwhile I'm all excited, thinking, "I got my first hit!!"

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10-20-2010, 11:35 AM
  #14
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I'm planning on taking it when I can - though I might not need to as the women's league here has actual practices with a coach, which is really nice for those of us who are new. Great job in your scrimmage! Your story reminds me of the scrimmage I was in on the Try Hockey Day - there was this other newbie woman coming down the boards with the puck, and I was determined to get it and we collided. She was like twice my size and I totally laid her out. It's non-checking and I stopped and looked around to see if I was in trouble. One of the women from the league just shrugged and said, "that's hockey!" Meanwhile I'm all excited, thinking, "I got my first hit!!"
That's kind of how I felt. At first I felt really bad for hitting him and then I felt really good about getting a couple good hits on a guy that seperated him from the puck. The guy was a cherry picker anyways and everyone was happy he got taken out try to stick handle through everyone. Hey I look at as maybe I taught him a little something about keeping your head up while coming through the middle.

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10-20-2010, 11:48 AM
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Thanks, Beth! I've been lurking here for a while and was glad to be able to jump in when you started this thread. It sounds like you've come a long way since you started! After the intro session, I started taking skating lessons with a coach, and drag my husband to open skates with me--he's good at making me work on my weak side. He'll also work with me on passing and stick handling, whenever I can get him to play some ball hockey with me.

It is pretty cool that he plays and has been supportive; none of my friends skate at all, much less play.

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10-20-2010, 08:22 PM
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That's kind of how I felt. At first I felt really bad for hitting him and then I felt really good about getting a couple good hits on a guy that seperated him from the puck. The guy was a cherry picker anyways and everyone was happy he got taken out try to stick handle through everyone. Hey I look at as maybe I taught him a little something about keeping your head up while coming through the middle.
I seem to do a lot of hitting in my "non checking" league as well. For the most part, it comes when I'm fighting for position in front of the net or behind it, but this week I laid someone out up near my own blue line as he was trying to receive a pass. Head down, stopped short as I was coming up. I just shoved him over and didn't even get called (I thought it might be interference). No apologies, no hard feelings, because it's part of the game and everyone in the league seems to realize that.

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10-21-2010, 10:52 AM
  #17
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It is pretty cool that he plays and has been supportive; none of my friends skate at all, much less play.
Same here - I've been trying to convince my friends to come skate with me, playing up what a great workout it is, but so far no takers!

Last night was mite practice and it was a blast. I've found my confidence in this new role as assistant coach and don't feel quite so lost out there. I've almost got all the kids' names down are we are starting to bond. They are all too cute! I think one advantage I have being new is that I can see where they're having trouble figuring something out as I've just figured it out myself. Then I can say, "here is what helped me do this".

Going to shoot the puck around later today. I need to come up with some new drills for myself.

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10-21-2010, 11:27 AM
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@ChiTownHawks

I'm the exact same person as you, down to the skating experience and age of entry, except it's now 2 years later. I played roller hockey and skated some, but really tried ice at 29, starting with a clinic and some pickup.

The good news is I got a lot better over those two years. I'm one of the best players on two C league teams, and I'm co-captain of one of them. The bad news is I think I've plateaued.

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10-21-2010, 12:37 PM
  #19
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@ChiTownHawks

I'm the exact same person as you, down to the skating experience and age of entry, except it's now 2 years later. I played roller hockey and skated some, but really tried ice at 29, starting with a clinic and some pickup.

The good news is I got a lot better over those two years. I'm one of the best players on two C league teams, and I'm co-captain of one of them. The bad news is I think I've plateaued.
I am glad to hear that you have improved over those 2 years. I hope to do the same. I don't mind if I plateau so long as it is with the basic fundamentals down pat.

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10-21-2010, 03:30 PM
  #20
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congratulations on taking up a great sport . There are other sports I am better at
but I will take the fun of hockey over any athletic endevour.

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10-21-2010, 04:43 PM
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I am glad to hear that you have improved over those 2 years. I hope to do the same. I don't mind if I plateau so long as it is with the basic fundamentals down pat.
Oh, there's one caveat: I played/play a ton. I was on the ice at least twice a week, often three times. Once a week isn't enough for me.

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10-21-2010, 05:51 PM
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So I'm back from playing around by myself again. I'm back to being sucky at wrist shots today, but I'm hoping it was because the ice was totally torn up and snowy. I'm still not sure I'm doing them completely right, and I really have to think about what I'm doing, like making sure my bottom hand is not too high, that my top arm has room to snap, putting some weight into the stick, getting my wrist in it, things like that. Sometimes I will get a puck off really hard and smooth without a lot of effort and I can tell that that one was probably close to the right way of doing it. Also, I'm pretty sure I'm not doing the weight transfer totally right either. And even when I get in a groove of doing decent shots at the boards, when I try to do it while skating, it's kind of hilarious and sad. I need to get someone to watch me.

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10-22-2010, 12:23 AM
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Beth-You've probably already seen this video, but it is by far my favorite video to watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNDqs...ext=1&index=14

Hopefully you will find it helpful

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10-22-2010, 12:59 PM
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Beth-You've probably already seen this video, but it is by far my favorite video to watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNDqs...ext=1&index=14

Hopefully you will find it helpful
That's a good one, I've seen it before, but I think I need to watch it a whole bunch more times. One thing that I can see from it that I'm probably not doing is leaning into the stick. I think I'm trying to do it too upright. Something to think about next time. And the weight transfer.

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10-22-2010, 01:09 PM
  #25
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So I'm back from playing around by myself again. I'm back to being sucky at wrist shots today, but I'm hoping it was because the ice was totally torn up and snowy. I'm still not sure I'm doing them completely right, and I really have to think about what I'm doing, like making sure my bottom hand is not too high, that my top arm has room to snap, putting some weight into the stick, getting my wrist in it, things like that. Sometimes I will get a puck off really hard and smooth without a lot of effort and I can tell that that one was probably close to the right way of doing it. Also, I'm pretty sure I'm not doing the weight transfer totally right either. And even when I get in a groove of doing decent shots at the boards, when I try to do it while skating, it's kind of hilarious and sad. I need to get someone to watch me.
if you ever played baseball hink about the weight transfer in a baseball swing. The important thing to not come out and try to take perfect shots but to use perfect technic the rest will come later.

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