Volume 1 Issue 10                                                                       August 28, 2014

Star Panel Closes USAH Coaches Symposium 

Maximize Your Ice Time

Small-Ice Hockey Spurs Competition at Sabres Development Camp

Youth Sports Practice Model Gets Kids Active

VIDEO: A Study on Praise & Mindsets

VIDEO: Talent vs. Potential

Just for Coaches: On- and Off-Ice Practice Plans


Star Panel Closes USA Hockey's National

Coaches Symposium

USA Hockey's National Hockey Coaches Symposium wrapped Sunday with a presentation from 2014 U.S. Men's Olympic Team head coach Dan Bylsma and an all-star coaching panel at the JW Marriott. The panel was moderated by 1984 U.S. Olympic coach Lou Vairo and included Bylsma, Igor Larionov, John Vanbiesbrouck and Tim Watters. A selection of their quotes is below.


What They Said...


Tim Watters - Longtime NHL defenseman


"I thought all my youth coaches gave me little nuggets I could take away ... What I remember most were the coaches that taught me the life lessons. I can't remember the exact skills they taught me, but I remember the values they taught me."


"Find a mentor who can be really honest with you because there are some hard decisions to make with players ... A mentor that has gone through it and you can trust and confide in is probably the best advice I can give to young coaches."


"Growing up I played baseball, rugby in high school and volleyball in high school and of those three I would say volleyball helped the most (with hockey) ... there is no question that multiple sports helped me train for hockey."




The Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois is pleased to announce the continuation of the Cross Ice Grant Program. The Cross Ice Grant Program is designed to aid AHAI Affiliates and their home rinks in promoting the growth of ice hockey through the implementation of a cross-ice/half-ice hockey program. This year, AHAI is offering Hard Divider Grants to interested Associations throughout Illinois. Through USA Hockey and AHAI Grants, half the cost will be covered for those that participate. The Hard Dividers can be used in many configurations; most commonly along the redline if you have one set, or across both bluelines if you have two sets. Additionally the boards can be used to create shooting lanes during practice or an area to work with goalies. Be creative and enhance your ice utilization with hard board dividers. To learn more about Cross-Ice Hard Dividers, click HERE. View the video above to get a peek at what the dividers look like.




Small-Ice Hockey Spurs Competition at Sabres Development Camp


 By USA Hockey  


When the Buffalo Sabres wanted to measure incoming prospects' compete level, they devoted an entire day of their July development camp to playing small-ice hockey.


Buffalo's format of choice was an intense 3-on-3 tournament played within 75 feet of ice, from the attacking blue line to the end boards (one end zone). Time and space was in short supply by design, demanding maximum skill and grit from the Sabres' 40 invitees.





Youth Sport Practice Model Gets Kids Active with More Time Practicing Skills


By USA Hockey


Organized sports can be a mechanism for children to obtain physical activity in an environment where risks of participation can be controlled. However, research connecting youth sport participation and physical activity is both limited and equivocal.


Sport practices tend to overemphasize skill and competition strategies during instructional time, thereby limiting the efficient use of practice facilities and the amount of time children engage in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA).



Carol Dweck: A Study on Praise & Mindsets

Parents often tell their kids to work hard. This is sound advice to help them succeed in hockey and in life. Putting forth "effort" to learn and grow is an important prerequisite for future success. How we as parents, coaches and teachers praise that effort may be even more important than we realize. This short video illustrates the effect we can have on our kids with the proper reinforcement of their effort.

Dr. Stephen Norris: Talent vs. Potential

Dr. Stephen Norris discusses talent and potential and what this means to our youngest athletes. Is a 7-year old truly talented or does he/she have the potential to be talented? How often do we see the "best" mite not become the "best" bantam? This is a small cllip of a larger discussion Dr. Norris had with a group of USA Hockey members here in Chicago a few years ago.


Small-area games are game-like competitive drills that utilize a playing surface that has been reduced in size. A typical small-area game will be played in one end of the ice and can be played cross-ice, between face-off dots, in one corner, below the face-off dots or in any other number of areas, including the neutral zone.


The area of the rink being used is dependent upon the skills being taught. Most games are designed to teach a combination of individual skills and are most easily played in a cross-ice format. However, some games will be moved into a much smaller section of the rink to create a smaller playing surface while other games will take advantage of a much larger area to teach team skills such as breakouts or power plays.



USA Hockey provides an abundance of material to help coaches design efficient and fun dryland training for the 8U age group. We will highlight some of those exercises here each month.


Ask your coaching coordinator or hockey director where you can get the dryland deck of cards, or contact AHAI's Coach- in- Chief. 



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