While the 2019-20 hockey season was forced to an early end due to the
COVID-19 pandemic, there is no reason why the focus cannot begin to shift
to next season.
One positive of social distancing is the opportunity for players of all
ages and abilities to focus on improving away from the rink.
Off-ice training is just as important for hockey development as being on
the ice. It allows for athletes to focus on bio-motor abilities (speed,
power, strength, flexibility, conditioning) that will enhance their on-ice
Let’s break down the ways to improve these specific areas at home to make
sure players are ready to lace up the skates in the fall.
PART 1: SPEED
PART 2: POWER
It is no secret that power is important for hockey. Power allows players to skate faster, shoot harder and win puck battles. It can be trained through the use of plyometrics (a training method which often requires athletes to jump, hop, skip and/or bound). Static jumps (pausing and holding the down position of a jump) are useful for hockey players to increase leg power due to the unique skating position. When skating, leg power needs to be generated from this bent-knee-and-hip position.
Static Squat Jump: With feet shoulder-width apart, squat down and hold this down position for three seconds before exploding in the air as hard as you can. Land softly and athletically, and then reset. Perform five jumps per set. Aim for 3-4 sets per session.
Split Squat Jump with Switch and Stick: Start this jump in a lunge position. Explode into the air, switching your front and back legs while in the air. Stick your landing (and pause), before performing another jump. Perform three jumps per leg (six total jumps) per set. Aim for 3-4 sets per session.